A Central New York family competes in a decades-long hunting competition for the trophy and bragging rights (PHOTOS)
Every July, the Ruffrage family gathers on the St. Lawrence River for a few days to compete in the Fast Eddy Memorial Tournament, named in honor of their family patriarch and 11-time winner, Ed Ruffrage, who passed away in 2017.
The beautiful trophy pictured above dates back to 1983, and gives the winner sole bragging rights during the holidays, as well as the ability to troll other family members in group chats about their lack of hunting skills.
This year’s winner is Steve Ruffrage, of Whitesboro, who successfully landed a 20.5-inch, 5.5-pound board using a worm off Cherry Island outside Alexandria Bay.
Advice to the Ruffrage family: Don’t sit next to Steve this Thanksgiving, you’ll never hear the end of it.
As if you couldn’t tell by the smile on her face, nine-year-old Joanna Vermilia, of Baldwinsville, loves to fish. Here she holds a largemouth bass from the Seneca River recently landed from her family’s dock using a nightcrawler under the float. Joanna had success all summer long with the same set-up, releasing channel cats, drumsticks, minis and bulls.
Everett Price, 9, of Manlius was fishing with his family one evening on Big Moose Lake when they saw a large fish cruising in the shallow water. Using a sea bass as bait, his father threw a hand line into the water, hooked it, and Everett pulled it in for the win.
While trolling a six-inch spoon 65 feet deep on Lake Ontario, Charlie Schneider, of Scott, landed this impressive 13-pound salmon near Chimney Bluffs, his first ever. Congratulations Charlie!
Ryan Scalera, 12, of Hilton, recently caught these beauties — a largemouth bass (left) and a sheepshead (right) — back-to-back in Irondequoit Bay.
Zane Williamson of Fulton recently captured his personal best spear from a pier on the Oswego River. The impressive fish weighed six pounds and was 33 inches long.
Brian Davis of Skaneateles fishes his hometown lake three days a week. He recently caught a chrome trout on a Dixie spinner while trolling near the country club in about 40 feet.
Paul Coeur fishes in the barge canal in his hometown of Rome year-round. His most recent catches include a 36-inch tiger muskie (above), which he hung from the dock in Bellamy Harbor and kept on the line while the good Samaritan ran back to his car to get his net; a 27-inch, six-pound walleye (bottom left); and 4.2 lbs of Bucket Mouth from Delta Lake.
Tim Nolan of Baldwinsville caught a 22-inch brown trout on Nine Mile Creek in a heavily fished hole off Rt. 174 near Marcellus using an old-fashioned worm.
Send us photos of your fish!
We want to see your catch: bass, walleye, double-headed goby, whatever. Just be sure to provide (1) the names of anyone in the photo (2) their hometown (3) the type of fish (4) where it was caught (5) length and weight if applicable (6) the bait used. Add some colorful details; We all love a good fish story. Tight lines, yes.
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Steve Featherstone covers the outdoors for The Post-Standard, syracuse.com And NYUP.com. Call him on email@example.com Or on Twitter @featheroutdoors. You can also follow all our external content on newyorkupstate.com/outdoors/ Or follow us on Facebook at facebook.com/upstatenewdoors.