The new Oceans East (Nags Head) building, previously known as Whalebone Tackle, was refaced and expanded to accommodate all of the needs of local fisherman. The store is stocked with tackle and apparel to best accommodate beach, inshore, and offshore fisherman of the Outer Banks. Starting in May of 2019, Oceans East will be introducing a series of fishing tournaments beginning with a two day cobia tournament as well as a three day tuna tournament. Through these tournaments Oceans East has developed a nonprofit organization known as the “Oceans East Fishermans Fund.” The Oceans East Fishermen’s Fund is a nonprofit organization working together to unite the local Outer Banks fishermen within their own community.
Initially established in the 1980’s, the Oregon Inlet Fishermen’s Fund was created to support the captains and mates of our charter fleet when they found themselves in times of need. Over the years the fund helped to repair motors, replace tackle and keep medical bills current; most times the recipients replaced the funds when they were back on their feet. Countless donations at parking lot BBQs and pot luck dinners funded the OIFF in days gone by; unfortunately, the fund was closed a decade ago.
In 2019 Oceans East Tackle established a new non profit to unite our local fishermen with their community. The Ocean’s East Fishermen’s Fund is designed in the same spirit as the original - to support our local fleet and their families by assisting in funding their costs for unexpected medical expenses, mechanical issues or additional incidental expenses that hinder their operations.
Today funding comes directly from the generous donations of local businesses, our fishermen, residents of our community and the proceeds from the Oceans East Fishing Tournaments. 100% of the proceeds will be given back to our fishermen to get them back on the water. Board member and long time charter captain, Dickie Harris has agreed to serve as an administrator of the fund just as he did in the past.
Fishing from Oregon Inlet is still the primary source of income for many Outer Banks families. Although there have been many environmental changes and regulatory pressures over the years, our fishermen have shown a remarkable ability to adapt through these tough times. Most think of our fishermen as the heart and soul of the Outer Banks and fishing remains an important business component of the economic foundation of Dare County. Still, fishing, while exciting and sometimes honorable, is simply a hard earned living. The Oceans East Fishermen’s Fund was created by the Board Members of the Oceans East Fishing Tournaments, composed of volunteers and local business owners on the Outer Banks.
Bradley Wachowiak – Owner, Oceans East OBX
Justin Wilson – Owner, Oceans East OBX
James Hillsman - Owner, Oceans East OBX
Paul Spencer – Owner, Spencer Yachts
Heather Maxwell – Director, Pirate’s Cove Billfish Tournament
Dickie Harris – Captain “Fintastic”
Billy Maxwell – Captain “Tuna Fever”
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