No record fish hit the scales so far in the 73rd Martha’s Vineyard Bass and Bluefish Derby, but there has been one record of note.

As of Wednesday morning, a record number of fishermen, 3,508, had signed up to try their skill and their luck fishing the derby. Last year a total of 3,382 anglers signed up for the entire length of the tournament.

“There has been a lot of new people registering for the first time, which is interesting,” said derby chairman Joe El-Deiry. “The fishing has not been phenomenal, but the camaraderie, the humor, and all of that stuff which really is what makes the derby the derby is in full swing. It’s not always about the fishing but it definitely is about everybody coming together, and that part has been phenomenal. It’s been a very good derby in a lot of ways.”

Going into the final weekend, these are the people who occupy the grand leader board as of Thursday morning, destined to sweat out a few more days before the awards ceremony: boat bluefish, David Kadison, 18.49 pounds; shore bluefish, Paul Hoffman, 13.08 pounds; boat striped bass, Stephen Pietruska, 39.20 pounds; shore striped bass, Ollie Becker, 37.69; pounds; boat bonito, Raymond Cabot, 11.75 pounds; shore bonito, Stephen Swayer Jr., 6.76 pounds; boat false albacore, Gary Look, 15.75 pounds; and shore false albacore, Ken Zaiatz, 12.85 pounds.

The top four grand leaders from shore and the top four grand leaders from a boat will each get a chance to win one of the two grand prizes, a center console fishing boat from Cape Codder boats, or a Subaru Forrester SUV from Clay Suburu.

The derby committee has been busy for the past few days planning the award ceremony, scheduled for 1 p.m., Sunday Oct. 14, at the Farm Neck Golf Club. Doors open at noon for the festivities, and the public is invited to the awards ceremony.

There are certain to be some sad moments mixed in with the joy and the drama, following the death of derby president Ed Jerome during the second week of the tournament.

“John Custer, myself, and Chris Scott will be doing the key ceremony,” said Mr. El-Deiry, referring to the dramatic padlock opening that determines who wins the grand prizes. For as long as most can remember, that has been organized and executed flawlessly by Mr. Jerome.

“It will be bittersweet,” Mr. El-Deiry said. “Even though there will be tributes and discussions about Ed, the overall focus will be to let people enjoy the good fishing that they had, and all the derby participants getting together to wrap up the 73rd derby, which we all have agreed 100 per cent, that’s what Ed would want us to do.”