The 11th annual Oak Bluffs Monster Shark Tournament starts this Thursday with a captain's meeting at the Wesley Hotel. Fishing takes place on Friday and Saturday.  Bob Jackson, the organizer of the event and the president of the Boston Big Game Fishing Club, said he is expecting at least 55 boats.

For the public, the scene in the Oak Bluffs harbor is impressive. Expensive powerboats from as far north as Maine and as far south as South Carolina come for long weekend of fishing and fun. Mr. Jackson said the tournament is the largest in the Northeast. Last year 62 boats took part, catching and releasing 780 sharks. Out of the whole tournament only 15 sharks were big enough to bring ashore for weighing in. The club has set a 300-pound minimum, in response to conservation initiatives to protect these increasingly rare creatures.

"Last year we had a world record blue shark weighing 454 pounds," Mr. Jackson said.

The best time to see some of these huge fish is after 4 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, when the vessels return with their catch. The weigh-in station is on the water, located next to Shark's Landing Bait and Tackle Shop, in the Our Market. The Wesley Hotel is the tournament's weekend headquarters.

Fishing boats leave the dock at around sunrise. It takes hours for the fishing boats to get far enough south to where the sharks are. Lines go into the water at 8 a.m. and come out of the water at 3 p.m.

An awards ceremony is scheduled for Saturday night at Lola's.

Trigger Fish

On Thursday morning, Bill Ashak of Edgartown caught himself two memorable fish from the south. He caught two trigger fish. "I was fishing the Lobsterville jetty for fluke and got hitched up with two fish. The biggest was 14 inches. The smallest, we ate the smallest one," he said.

Trigger fish are known to come as far north as Massachusetts but they are definitely unusual. "When they come out of the water they have this rich blue color. But it fades after awhile," he said. After he caught the second he tried and almost caught a third trigger fish. He said the fish got away.

Mr. Ashak said the fish tastes a lot like a large yellow perch. "It was excellent breaded and fried. I wish I had more."

Floating Tribute to QE II

There may be a new buoy, marking a controversial spot in Vineyard Sound where the 963-foot Queen Elizabeth II ran aground five years ago. The buoy was recently spotted by Jerry Coe, of the 40-foot sloop Indian Summer. Mr. Coe was out sailing the Sound when he spotted the new red buoy with the number 32. It even has a horn.

Many Vineyarders will remember the tragic day on Friday, August 7 when the large cruise ship sped down Vineyard Sound, headed for home, and hit an uncharted rock in the Sound, 2 1/2 miles south of Cuttyhunk. While the passengers and the vessel were never in danger, the ship was under repairs for months. The incident resulted in an extensive investigation and the recharting of the bottom of Vineyard Sound.

And the Queen Elizabeth II has not been back since.

There are conflicting reports over what new buoys have been placed in the Sound. "The Woods Hole buoy tender Bittersweet is redoing a lot of buoys in the area to try and make it a little safer for deep draft vessels going through," said Jay Lipinsky, a spokesman for the Coast Guard out of District One in Boston.

"I was told we did not put a buoy in that spot where the Queen Elizabeth II grounded. But we are in process of redoing and updating the buoy system for that entire area," he said.