The Mid-Atlantic $500,000 fishing tournament returns for its 21st season when it begins today in Cape May.

The tournament attracts big-game fishermen from along the East Coast. The field consists of 125 boats that will fish for marlin, tuna, dolphin and wahoo over the next five days.

Each boat can choose three of the five tournament days to fish.

Fishing begins at 8:30 a.m. and ends at 3:30 p.m. each day. Weigh-ins must be done at the Canyon Club Resrt Marina in Cape May or at the Mid-Atlantic 500’s satellite port at Sunset Marina in Ocean City, Md.

The boats that catch the three heaviest white and blue marlin will win $100,000, $50,000 and $25,000, respectively. The three heaviest tuna will be worth $75,000, $35,000 and $20,000. The heaviest dolphin and wahoo will each bring $10,000.

Organizers said in a statement Sunday night that minimum weights are 65 pounds for white marlin, 400 pounds for blue marlin, and 50 pounds for all tuna, including big-eye, yellowfin or longfin.

The total purse, including side bets, could exceed $1.5 million, organizers said.

The daily weigh-in sessions are not open to the public, but live updates and more information can be found at the tournament’s website: www.ma500.com.

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