Striped bass fingerlings implanted in the Colorado River less than 10 years ago have achieved extraordinary growth in the Bullhead City, Ariz. area south of Davis Dam.
The first 10-pounder caught was considered to be sensational, but increases have ranged up to five pounds a season, and this year sponsors of the Bullhead City Merchants' Striped Bass Derby were expecting a 50-pounder. Ron Weaver, a Bullhead City businessman, thinks he had one—for a while.
With his 11-year-old son along for their first striper quest together, Weaver baited up with a frozen anchovy and soon latched onto a fish that took 45 exciting minutes to bring aboard the boat. A borrowed scale registered it at 51 pounds and, even allowing for some scale error, the fish easily beat the existing state record of 47 pounds.
As Weaver was turning the key to start his boat and get the fish as quickly as possible to an official weighing station to be certified for the $1,000 top prize, his son asked, "Can I hold him, Dad?" Then there was a splash as son and fish went overboard.
Weaver rescued his son—there are priorities in these matters—but the striper disappeared.
The craggy, rock-shaped bottle has a boxing glove as a stopper and on its front there is a cameo reproduction of none other than Rocky Marciano. Inside is a fifth of Kentucky whiskey, a product of the James B. Beam Distilling Co. It is Jim Beam's 351st trophy bottle in 20 years and, like many another in the series, it is expected to become a collector's item—and quite a valuable one. One such bottle, a facsimile of the First National Bank of Chicago in commemoration of its 100th anniversary, has attained a value of $2,800 since it was introduced in 1964. The trophy bottles initially sell for from $10 to $25.
The idea for Rocky's bottle came from Louis Marciano, the boxer's brother, and proceeds will go to the Rocky Marciano Foundation in San Jose, Calif.
So now the late great and undefeated Rocky has what he never had in his ring career: a glass jaw.