Reelin’ from a win

Published 11:59 pm Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Aidan Vines, an 8-year-old third grader at Andalusia Elementary, couldn’t help but rub it in his father’s face when he reeled in the 24.2-pound blackfish tuna that won him a first place prize in the Destin Fishing Rodeo.

When asked how he got aboard the deep sea fishing vessel, Swoop II, he was quick to say, “With $107.”



In actuality, Vines, and his father Danny, made the trip as part of a corporate retreat on Oct. 20, and didn’t realize the rodeo was going on when they boarded the boat.

“It was my second time deep sea fishing,” Vines said. “And it wasn’t even the biggest fish I’ve ever hooked. That gar I lost down at the river looked bigger than that one.”

Mr. Vines said it took a fishing mate and 25 minutes to get the fish on deck. Using an open-faced reel, the younger Vines was nearly giddy with the delight at the end of the fight.

“I was so tired,” he said. “The mate Adam hooked him and handed the reel off to me. It went up one side of the boat and over the other fisher people. Adam had to do that ‘cause I wasn’t tall enough.”

Vines brought home a first place win in the 65th annual event in the, brining home not only the a first place win the blackfish tuna division, but also a $200 gift card to Half Hitch Bait and Tackle.

And lest we forget the best part – bragging rights, he said.

So, what happened to the winning fish? It’s in the freezer, the two said.

“The funny thing is that Aidan doesn’t even eat fish,” his dad said. “But I sure do.”