Guy Harvey-Sponsored All-Release Tournaments Partnering to Cross-Promote, Spread Message

March 25, 2012

Creators of the Guy Harvey Ultimate Shark Challenge Tournament and Festival and Organizers of the World’s Richest Tarpon Tournament have announced plans to strengthen and share their commitment to conservation by cross-promoting their common missions and messages to the general public, press and media. The Ultimate Shark Challenge Tournament and Festival takes place in Punta Gorda’s downtown waterfront at Laishley Crab House at Laishley Park May 4 th – 6 th followed by the World’s Richest Tarpon Tournament in Boca Grande May 17th and 18th and the Downtown Tarpon Festival May 19th and 20th.

Both all-release tournaments feature exciting and innovative high-stakes competitions that also place an emphasis on best practices when it comes to the post-release welfare of their respective target species; sharks and tarpon. The common ground between the two events is clear when looking at the USC’s established mission to, “Combine the Goals of Sport, Science and Conservation” alongside the WRTT’s new message of, “Conservation, Education and Sportsmanship”. Strategic alliances include Mote Marine Laboratory and Mote Center for Shark Research, Guy Harvey Enterprises and the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation. The event’s respective festivals are free to the public and offer a host of family-friendly fun, excitement, entertainment and education.

Without a doubt, the main attraction at both events are the fishing tournaments, which also share boundaries within the same storied fishing grounds of Boca Grande Pass, Charlotte Harbor and the Gulf of Mexico. While their marquis species are indeed very different, event organizers are quick to point out that, “Sharks and tarpon have been coexisting here for millions of years and that their symbiotic relationship is a matter of essential mutual benefit to a healthy marine and coastal environment. In many ways, that relationship is a great metaphor for why we’re collaborating with our events.”

USC Creators, Sean & Brooks Paxton add that, “We’re extremely fortunate to have this uniquely diverse environmental playground right here in our backyard. The area offers so many choices for not only boaters and recreational anglers, but anyone interested in an endless list of eco and adventure-based activities on land and sea. There really is something for everyone. We’re proud of that and feel a responsibility to protect and conserve these natural assets while promoting the region, the people and the businesses that rely upon and support them. We do that by leveraging purposeful entertainment that also educates and inspires people.”

Lew Hastings, Executive Director at the Boca Grande Area Chamber of Commerce and Tournament Director of the WRTT explains, “My goal is to strengthen and promote the financial growth and well being of the local businesses in order to sustain a healthy community. We see the constant threat of damage and destruction to the natural beauty and wildlife habitats that surround us and recognize that they can not and should not be looked upon as a cost of doing business. Exploitation of natural resources in the name of progress and financial gain leaves us all a great deal poorer in the end. The significant economic and environmental impact recreational fishing has on our communities, make conservation for a sustainable fishery not only preferable but necessary. Education and conservation of the fishery combined with sport fishing will be the primary focus. Safe boating, sportsmanship and responsible angling will be promoted in order to encourage a safe, successful family friendly atmosphere that will inspire everyone to engage in the protection and proper stewardship of our natural resources so that they may be enjoyed for generations to come.”

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Guy Harvey and Florida Lottery Announce New Guy Harvey Scratch-Off Game and Second Chance Promo

March 22, 2012

Additional second chance promotion offers players the chance to win the fishing trip of a lifetime!

WEST PALM BEACH (March 22, 2012)—The Palm Beach International Boat Show got off to a lucky start Thursday with the announcement of a brand new Florida Lottery GUY HARVEY® Scratch-Off game.  Fishing and boating enthusiasts in Florida regularly wear Guy Harvey sportswear and starting on April 3, they can try their luck with this new game.

Capturing the colorful wildlife illustrations created by Dr. Guy Harvey, the $2 Scratch-Off game will feature six scenes of original Guy Harvey® Collector’s Series artwork.

“Today was a fun day to launch this new product that Floridians and visitors can really feel good about purchasing,” said Florida Lottery Secretary Cynthia O’Connell. “Not only do we expect this ticket to generate about $3.5 million for Florida’s education system, Dr. Harvey is also donating his licensing fee to the Guy Harvey Ocean Fund, a non-profit organization that directly benefits Florida’s coastlines.”

The $2 GUY HARVEY® Scratch-Off game offers cash prizes of up to $30,000 and overall odds to win of one-in-4.37. Additionally, non-winning GUY HARVEY® tickets may be entered in the Guy Harvey® Sportsman’s Paradise Second Chance Promotion on the Lottery’s website.

Four drawings will be held between April 25 and June 27 with 12 winners selected in each drawing.

  • Grand prize winners will receive a Sportsman’s Paradise fishing trip for two to one of several fantastic fishing destinations including St. Petersburg Beach, Duck Key, the Bahamas, or Grand Cayman Island, where one lucky winner and a guest will get the opportunity of a lifetime – to go fishing with Guy Harvey himself!
  • Second prize winners in the drawing will receive an original Guy Harvey® framed watercolor painting and the third prize winners will receive a $200 gift certificate to GuyHarveySportswear.com.

“This partnership with the Florida Lottery is unique and I am happy to be here in Florida to launch a product that will help Florida’s schools as well as the state’s precious natural resources,” said Dr. Guy Harvey. “I am especially looking forward to fishing with the winner of the Grand Cayman trip. We will have a great time!”

The Florida Lottery is working closely with the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission to promote the game to Florida’s licensed anglers and to help underscore the importance of conservation to Florida.

“Acknowledged as the ‘Fishing Capital of the World,’ Florida has vast natural resources we are duty-bound to protect,” said Chuck Collins, Regional Director of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.  “Every effort to highlight the beauty of our waters, the abundance of species and our need to respect and conserve them for residents, visitors and our future generations is a worthwhile effort.”


Dead Sharks Distort Reality

March 21, 2012

The following commentary was written by Doug Olander, Editor-in-Chief of Sport Fishing magazine. The article appeared as Doug’s editorial column in SF’s April 2012 issue. 

Let me cut to the chase:

1. If I never see another billfish or shark hanging dead for bragging rights and glory photos, it will be too soon.

2. I absolutely, unequivocally see nothing wrong with keeping a shark to eat — preferably a shark of modest size, taken aboard a boat to be shared among anglers and crew.

Too many anglers want to jump to the conclusion that a statement like No. 1 must come from a PC fish hugger who thinks no angler should ever keep any fish. Far from it.

But that sort of thinking seems to be the basis of comments left by an angry fisherman both on SF’s Facebook Page and web site after reading a Quick Bites news item in February on the Shark Free Marina Initiative.

The reader is upset that the item cites as good news four species of sharks added to Florida’s prohibited-species list. Then he asks, “Why do you feel that the prevention of offloading a legally caught species is a good thing?”

I would ask a different question: Why does anyone need to kill sharks such as hammerheads and tigers, whether legal or not? They’re not food fish, so what’s the point of killing them?

Beyond that, even if killing a big shark for the glory of a snapshot in your smartphone is legal, does that make it right?

news item about Rosie O’Donnell, shark slayer, resurfaced recently, proudly posted on the website of her skipper. Based in Miami Beach, he’s made a reputation for killing sharks (and as long as he could get away with it, anything else including sailfish). Included was a photo of a dead hammerhead (killed long before it was illegal to do so), swinging from a crane as Rosie and her small children smiled for the cameras.

I think hanging up dead sharks in a marina is wrong, but more important, I think doing so is just plain stupid. It’s a point I’ve made before and sadly, probably will have to again: Anglers and captains like Rosie’s do nothing but damage the image of our sport, and hurt you, me and all real sport fishermen. A nonfishing public, seeing dead sharks gathering flies at a dock, more easily accepts a distorted reality where sport fishermen are pigs with no respect for the resource.

And this comes at the very time more and more green groups would be happy to see all recreational fishing banned. Do we need to help their cause? If the purpose of those who agree with Rosie and her skipper is to put further restrictions on our sport, they’re doing a bang-up job.

That doesn’t mean I think no shark should ever be killed (see No. 2 above). A smaller mako or common thresher, neither of which is considered overfished, can be shared by anglers and crew for meals (with no need to leave ’em hanging dead at the dock). A blacktip can offer inshore anglers some fair filets. I’ve even sampled the common bonnethead and found it pretty tasty.

And yes, even across the board, the recreational take of sharks has to be a small fraction of those killed commercially. But the public seldom sees that carnage, versus one shark left to hang at the sport docks. No wonder many of the powerful environmental groups clamoring to close off the ocean no longer try to make any distinction between commercial and sport fishing.

It’s because of skippers like Rosie’s that I join Guy Harvey in supporting the Shark Free Marinas Initiative — to avoid just such repulsive photo-op scenes.

The fact that the Humane Society and Pew support the initiative doesn’t automatically make it bad for recreational fishing. That said, I’ve come to the point where it makes me uncomfortable to be on the same side of any issue with Pew.

But in this case, the mind-set and actions of Rosie and her captain just don’t leave me much choice.


Guy Harvey Talks Sharks on 1290 WJNO Radio

March 20, 2012

Guy recently spoke to south Florida’s 1290 WJNO radio in advance of the gala screening of the shark documentary, “This is Your Ocean: Sharks”. The film, starring Guy, fellow marine artist Wyland and shark expert Jim Abernethy will be showing Wednesday, March 21st at the Cobb Theatres, Downtown at the Gardens in Palm Beach Gardens, FL. Guy, Jim and producer/director George Schellenger will be in attendance. Tickets are still available, and all proceeds from this special screening will benefit the Bahamas National Trust.

Guy Harvey Talks “This is Your Ocean: Sharks” on 1290 WJNO Radio


Guy Harvey Magazine Wins Addy Awards

March 12, 2012

For the second year in its two-year history, Guy Harvey Magazine has won some prestigious Addy Awards, presented by the American Advertising Federation for magazine layout and design. This year, Guy Harvey Magazine took home coveted Gold and Silver awards. The Gold was for the 2011 series of four covers featuring various renditions of Guy Harvey art from a bull dolphin to a blue marlin. The Silver Award was given for the overall design of the Fall 2011 issue, which included a 10-page article entitled, The Art of the T-Shirt. While Guy Harvey is well known for his ubiquitous t-shirts, it should be noted that he is also, Dr. Guy Harvey, noted marine biologist, philanthropist and conservationist.

The Addy Awards are held each year honoring the best and brightest design work in each chapter.


Undercover Investigation Exposes Secrets of the Overseas Shark Fin Markets

March 7, 2012

At a fishery in Kesennuma, Japan, hundreds of salmon sharks are lined up, weighed and then their fins are sliced off.

Shawn Heinrichs, one of today’s premiere underwater photographers/cinematographers, was recently featured in one of HDNet‘s Dan Rather Reports segments titled, “All for a Bowl of Soup”. Shawn’s investigative report has produced one of the most disturbing, yet insightful looks yet into the Asian shark fin markets. The evidence captured on film gives viewers a perspective on the death and destruction of shark populations in a way that has likely never been seen before:

* hundreds of bags labeled as “Anchovies from Mexico” overflowing with shark fins

* 6,000-7,000 fins – one day’s haul in just one shop – being sorted, washed and dried

* sharks being finned alive on fishing vessels, then dumped back into the ocean to drown

* a “tuna fishery” that processed less than 100 tuna, yet thousands of sharks – which were caught “accidentally” as by-catch

* a finned nurse shark, still alive, slowly dying on a reef – within a marine sanctuary off Indonesia

If you wish to gain a new perspective on the horrors of shark finning and develop an understanding of the unsustainable destruction that shark populations are experiencing on a global level, then please watch the 7-minute video below (the full 30-minute segment can be downloaded from iTunes, search “Dan Rather: For a Bowl of soup”.


Last Live Showings of “This is Your Oceans: Sharks”

March 6, 2012

Documentary to Show at Two Cobb Theatres in Palm Beach County

PALM BEACH GARDENS, FL—March 6, 2012— The award-winning nature documentary, This is Your Oceans: Sharks, completes its national tour with a series of final live showings in Palm Beach County starting March 21st with a gala evening event at Cobb Theatres 16 at Downtown at the Gardens in Palm Beach Gardens.

The film’s stars—celebrated marine artists and conservationists Dr. Guy Harvey and Wyland along with shark expert and diver Jim Abernethy and Emmy award winning director George C. Schellenger— are scheduled to attend the first showing, which will also feature a live auction of the artists’ original art. Tickets for the gala evening, which include light hors d’oeuvres and wine, are priced at $22.

All of the net proceeds from the gala opening and subsequent showings of the film at both Cobb Theatres 16 at Downtown at the Gardens and Cobb Theaters 18 in Jupiter are being donated to the Bahamas National Trust which recently headed a campaign resulting in the Government of the Bahamas prohibiting all commercial shark fishing in its more than 240,000 square miles of territorial waters. The Bahamas is the fourth country to ban shark fishing after Honduras, the Maldives and Palau.

One of the premier shark-watching destinations for divers, reeling in $800 million over the past 20 years for the Bahamian national economy, sharks, according to Dr. Harvey, are worth much more alive than dead.

“Many countries have seen their populations of sharks annihilated by commercial over-exploitation,” said Dr. Harvey.  “Research has shown that shark populations do not recover.  Other countries will take encouragement from the Bahamas’ very bold move.  They are realizing very quickly the value of the living shark in maintaining the health of reef ecosystems.  In addition, the economic value of a living shark to ecotourism is now widely accepted as a sustainable and non-consumptive use of a marine resource with many additional benefits to respective island nations.”

Instrumental in bringing the shark documentary to Palm Beach is Jeffrey Berman, whose company, Berman Enterprises LP, owns and manages Downtown at the Gardens.

“This documentary certainly changed the way I looked at these magnificent animals and gave me a new understanding of why it’s so important to be caretakers for our oceans and the creatures that inhabit them,” said Berman.  “I have to especially thank the folks from Cobb Theatres for donating the theaters for these showings, it was a very generous commitment.”

Joining Cobb as sponsors are Whole Foods Market and the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation.

This is Your Ocean: Sharks, which premiered last year at the prestigious Newport Beach Film Festival, reveals up close the misconceptions and myths surrounding these misunderstood predators of the sea and promotes global shark conservation.  Millions of sharks are killed each year in the shark-fin trade to stratify the global appetite for shark-fin soup.

The film’s director, George Schellenger, said following the Palm Beach County live showings the documentary will be available to home audiences via Blu Ray, DVD and downloads.