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Near Bethany Beach in Sussex County, Delaware — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Catching Waves

Delaware Seashore State Park

 
 
Catching Waves Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Devry Becker Jones (CC0), September 16, 2022
1. Catching Waves Marker
Inscription.  
Surf fishing is a Delaware tradition older than the beach parks themselves.
Decades of cooperation between surf anglers, DNREC Division of Parks and Recreation, elected officials, and other concerned citizens have created perfect conditions for visitors to reel one in.

[Timeline:]
1945
Following the end of WWII, surf fishing in Delaware gains popularity.

Clarence Aiken shows off a beach-ready 1934 Pontiac Model A in 1954.

1958
"These were beach buggies, not dune buggies.... Even during that early time period, we knew that to save the beach we had to save the dunes."
—Longtime surf fisherman, Harry Aiken, 2021

Local fishermen form the Delaware Beach Buggy Association (later named Delaware Mobile Surf Fishermen, Inc.).

1966
Delaware Parks Commission (later known as DNREC Division of Parks & Recreation) takes over management of state beaches — including surf fishing — from Delaware Highway Commission

In a 1967 surfcasting contest, women and men competed for
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casting accuracy, aiming for targets at varying distances.

Georgetown native and Surfcasting Champion, Harry Aiken practices with his son, Harry Jr. in 1968.

1969
The first Delaware State Parks surf fishing tags are registered.

There have been many surf fishing license plate designs, including this one from 1973. The first were individually numbered steel plates, costing $2 each.

A visitor shows off their catch at the Indian River Inlet in 1977

2015
New legislation directs the Division of Parks and Recreation to auction low digit surf fishing tags, raising money for State Parks.

Today, visitors can learn the basics of surf fishing at Delaware Seashore State Park programs.

Visitors surf fish at Cape Henlopen State Park. Surf fishing can be enjoyed at multiple Delaware State Parks, including here at Delaware Seashore.

 
Erected by Delaware State Parks.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: AnimalsParks & Recreational AreasSportsWaterways & Vessels. In addition, it is included in the Delaware State Parks series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1945.
 
Location. 38° 36.446′ N, 75° 3.716′ 
Catching Waves Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Devry Becker Jones (CC0), September 16, 2022
2. Catching Waves Marker
W. Marker is near Bethany Beach, Delaware, in Sussex County. Marker can be reached from Access Road A, 0.2 miles north of Coastal Highway (Delaware Route 1) when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 27070 Coastal Hwy, Bethany Beach DE 19930, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Sand Bypass System (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); United States Life-Saving Service (about 700 feet away); a different marker also named Sand Bypass System (about 700 feet away); Indian River Inlet and Bridge (approx. 0.2 miles away); Charles W. Cullen Bridge (approx. 0.2 miles away); a different marker also named Indian River Inlet and Bridge (approx. 0.2 miles away); Shipwreck of the Faithful Steward (approx. 1.4 miles away); Veterans Memorial (approx. 1.6 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Bethany Beach.
 
Additional keywords. sport fishing
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on September 18, 2022. It was originally submitted on September 18, 2022, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 75 times since then and 22 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on September 18, 2022, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.

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Apr. 21, 2024