Last week, it was the big one: the Texas International Fishing Tournament.

This weekend, it’s the big one for the women: the Ladies Kingfish Tournament.

And there’s no way the rain and surf Thursday will dampen what is expected to be a great day on the water Saturday.

It’s been 10 months in the making, and all that work will culminate with about 100 boats, and 250 to 350 women anglers and their captains, crews and families descending on the area.

It is the 36th year of the event, which was the first all-women tournament on the Texas coast. Now, according to South Padre Island Chamber of Commerce President Roxanne Harris, there are many more.

That could be attributed to the success of the LKT event.

It’s all about the women, Harris said. That’s not just the competitors — most of the folks running, volunteering and organizing the event also are women.

“We try to make it an all-women’s event,” she said.

Harris is one of those, as she leads all aspects of the event as the Chamber’s fundraiser.

“I work the entire weekend, and oversee all the operations and make sure it runs smoothly,” she said.

Harris also has a favorite time.

“The weigh-in is the most exciting,” she said. “Everything is so much fun. It is just exciting to see the fish come in and how enthusiastic they are. Then, when the leaderboard changes, you see the reactions.”

Although the crowds aren’t as big as they are for TIFT, Harris expects between 200 and 300 people to come out and watch as the fish are brought in.

By LISA SEISER Staff Writer