HARWICH ─ While the serious anglers in the annual Big 3 Fishing Tournament took to the waters off Harwich in the wee hours of July 14, another vessel left Allen Harbor a little later with a smaller crew that also had its sights set on some serious angling, all the while celebrating the special relationships formed through Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Cape and Islands.
The day involved two outings, one the Big 3, a fishing tournament held to raise funds for BBBSCCI, and the Little 3, an event solely for Big Brothers and Sisters and their charges in which they were treated to a few hours of fishing courtesy of John Doherty, an artist and fisherman out of Harwich.
Joining Doherty on the morning run were Hedeman Hercules of Hyannis and his Big Brother Dave Knauer, and Sarah Taylor of Bourne and her Big Sister Kathy McGuire. Both Knauer and McGuire have been involved with BBBS for years, with McGuire first working with an older sister of Taylor's, while Knauer has been a longtime mentor of Hercules'. Both described the experience as rewarding.
“I think [the best thing is] the connection that I make with my little sister and the enjoyment that we both have together visiting places, doing outdoor activities, going to the movies,” said McGuire. “It's just a wonderful feeling to enjoy Cape Cod with them throughout the year.”
Taylor, who will be a freshman at Upper Cape Tech in the fall, has appreciated visiting new places on the Cape.
“I really have fun,” she said.
Knauer has been by Hercules' side for some time, cheering him on at Barnstable High School football games and recently celebrated his graduation from BHS. The best thing, said Knauer, is just being a part of Hercules' life.
“I think it's watching Hedeman, my Little, develop doing things together from sleigh riding to fishing to tracking deer in the winter, and then watching him play football and learn to drive a car,” Knauer said. “It's just amazing. It's been a wonderful experience.”
For Hercules, being with Knauer has been an enriching experience.
“I like having somebody to talk to and hang out with,” he said.
After catching small catch-and-release black sea bass, the group headed for the rip off Monomoy Island where both Taylor and Hercules reeled in beautiful striped bass to take home.
Meanwhile, in the Big 3, a total of 43 boats took part, with Harwich Port's Jeff Feuerman recording the day's biggest catch with a 203-pound tuna. Feuerman is on the board of overseers for BBBS of Massachusetts Bay and was aboard the No Mercy.
The 2017 event raised more than $365,000 in support of BBBSCCI and its programs.