Feb. 11, 2019, 6:10 p.m.
With a rich, 37 year history, the Ngāi Takoto 90 Mile Beach Snapper Bonanza is ramping up for another big year of competition. With a diverse, dynamic group of competitors, the Snapper Bonanza brings great people and big money to the area.
Competion co-owner, Dave Collard, doesn't believe it has changed much from the time it was run by the Brijevich family under the 'Snapper Classic' name with only minor tweaks to the week long competition.
Collard is excited about the opportunity to work with local iwi Ngāi Takoto as the naming rights sponsor for the next three years. Working with the iwi has seen the use of the Te Oneroa-ā-Tōhē name used for the first time by the organisers adding to the richness of the event.
Believed to be the biggest surfcasting, snapper competition in the world, the Snapper Bonanza is "maxed out" at 1000 tickets sold with 'fish-crazy' competitors from all ages and socio-economic backgrounds.
There is a focus on sustainability, with fishermen only allowed to weigh in three fish per day. While they are able to fish the legal catch, it is rare that competitors do. With such a huge boost to the local economy, protecting the catchment is vitally important.