Nearly 600 Imposters, $25,000 Diamond Jim Still on
Annapolis, Md. (July 28, 2011) – The first
Diamond Jim imposter of the 2011 Maryland Fishing challenge has
been caught by David Huffman of Jersey Shore, Pa. Huffman was
fishing off of Rock Hall, Md. on July 20, when he hooked the
22-inch striped bass. The Diamond Jim imposter, worth $500, was one
of nearly 600 rockfish tagged so far this summer. If no one catches
the authentic Diamond Jim─ worth $25,000─ the money will be split
among those who caught the imposters.
“I want to congratulate Mr. Huffman as a winner in the 2011
Maryland Fishing Challenge,” said Governor Martin O’Malley. “This
annual tournament is a local tradition and showcases the wonderful
fishing opportunities we are afforded in Maryland.”
Over the summer, three batches of specially tagged striped bass
– one authentic Diamond Jim and the rest imposters – have been
released into the waters of the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.
The current Diamond Jim is worth $25,000. Also still on the loose
are as many as 599 imposters worth $500 each. Zachary’s Jewelers is
adding to the prize pool, giving away a set of diamond stud
earrings valued at approximately $4,000 to the angler who catches
the authentic Diamond Jim released today.
“We are pleased to be able to support this excellent event. The
Chesapeake Bay is one of the best places on earth for weddings,
proposals, anniversaries, birthdays, and of course, fishing,” said
Zachary’s Jewelers owner Steve Samaras. “It just seems appropriate
that the quest for a rockfish named Diamond Jim should have
diamonds as a prize. All of us at Zachary’s are happy to provide
these jewels with sincere hope that on September 10, we will have a
The Maryland Fishing Challenge Citation Award program runs all
year long, starting the day after Labor Day and ending the
following Labor Day. There are 71 qualifying species in the
program. Every angler who catches an award-qualifying fish or a
Diamond Jim tagged striped bass and enters the challenge becomes
eligible to participate in the grand prize random drawing, to be
held during the 43rd annual Seafood Festival on September 10, 2011
at Sandy Point State Park.
This year’s citation prizes include a boat and trailer package
from Bass Pro Shops and Tracker Boats, thousands of dollars in
fishing gear and trips from Bill’s Outdoor Center, a tropical
vacation from World Fishing Network and merchandise from Under
Diamond Jim was originally created during a short-lived fishing
contest during the 1950s, when a single specially tagged striped
bass was worth $25,000 to the lucky angler who caught him. DNR
revived this fun family event in 2005 to promote recreational
fishing, highlight Maryland’s State fish, recognize angler efforts
and inspire natural resources stewardship.
To see the complete citation award species list go to
To be eligible for the contest, all fish must caught
recreationally by rod and reel. Complete rules are available online
For information on the Maryland Seafood Festival, go to
“Catch a fish” is included in the Maryland Children’s Outdoor
Bill of Rights, issued by Governor Martin O’Malley in April 2009.
The Bill is part of the Maryland Partnership for Children in
Nature, an initiative to ensure all Maryland young people have the
opportunity to connect with their natural world and grow to become
informed and responsible stewards.
Note to anglers: If you catch a tagged fish, do not remove the
tag. Put the fish in your freezer and call the number printed on
the tag. A DNR representative will follow up to examine and certify
the tag. The Diamond Jim component of this year’s challenge ends at
midnight on September 5.