The KWLA, sponsored by Alexseal Yacht Coatings, is a one-day billfish release tournament with lines dropping in at 8 a.m. on Saturday, June 10, 2017, and fishing ending at 2 p.m. The lady angler reception hosted on Friday, June 9, 2016 is sponsored by Linda Rike Real Estate, and serves as the official kick-off of the Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament, which will begin its 59th year on Monday, June 12, 2017.
The KWLA tournament, celebrating it's 20th annual event, is named in honor of the late wife of Big Rock board member, Casey Wagner. Keli Wagner lost her battle with cancer in 2008. Keli was enthusiastic about the success of this tournament and she played a vital role in having the tournament proceeds donated to the cancer clinic. To date, KWLA has donated a total of $228,916 to the Carteret Health Care Cancer Center.
KWLA 2017 Art
The Big Rock KWLA Tournament is thrilled to name Brian Flanagan, of Cape Carteret, as the artist for the 20th Annual event! Originally from outside of Annapolis Maryland, Brian Flanagan is one of 13 children. Early on he learned how to draw, paint, and build things with wood from his older brothers and sisters. His intricate designs are first hand-drawn and cut to make a stencil and then painted on to reclaimed wood using vibrant colors. These unique paintings are inspired by his love for the coast of North Carolina, where he now lives with his wife and two children.
The 2017 art features a dark marlin outline filled with bright colors on a reclaimed wood framework. The wood material brings a new & unique quality to the original piece. The original art will be auctioned off at the Awards Banquet on Saturday, June 17, 2017.
**Stay tuned for the release of our 20th Annual KWLA T-Shirts & merchandise, featuring Brian Flanagan's art, coming this Spring!