FLY ROD STRIPED BASS
CATCH & RELEASE TOURNAMENT
2023 Martha’s Vineyard Rod & Gun Club Fly Rod Striped Bass Catch and Release Tournament
May 20th & 21st, 2023
Saturday May 20th, registration, Noon - 3 pm: at MV Rod & Gun Club: 265 The Blvd., Edgartown.
Saturday May 20th, 7 pm - May 22nd, 2 am: Tournament fishing begins at 7 pm and ends at 2 am.
Sunday May 21st, 8 am – 9:30 am: Grab bag breakfast treats with coffee and/or juice at MV Rod & Gun Club: 265 The Blvd., Edgartown.
Results must be turned in by 9 am.
Sunday May 21st, awards ceremony, 9:30 am: Awards ceremony at MV Rod & Gun Club: 265 The Blvd., Edgartown.
Fishermen must be registered and present to win prizes.
Dear Fly Fisherman:
For 31 years, the Martha’s Vineyard Rod and Gun Club Striped Bass Fly Rod Catch and Release Tournament rules stated: wind, rain, or moonshine — we do not cancel. Of course, we did not anticipate a COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
Amid the rollout of several vaccines and dropping infection rates, the new year brings good news. The 31st Striped Bass Fly Rod Catch and Release Tournament is scheduled for the evening of Saturday, May 21st. The caveat is that should the public health situation warrant, the contest will be canceled.
For thirty years, honesty, camaraderie, and conservation have underpinned the tournament. Recognizing concerns over catch-and-release mortality, we have modified the rules and changed the focus from high fish tallies to a fish quota — the first team to fill its quota wins.
The fish quota is four fish per angler for teams of three members or less. Three fish per angler for teams of four or more fishermen. The twist is that each member of a team must catch his or her own quota for the team to qualify.
For example, if you’re on fire, you can continue to fish after you've filled your quota but those fish don't satisfy your team member’s quota — he or she has to carry his own weight. We think this will add to the rooting (or harassing) of fellow team members.
Plaques will be awarded based on each qualifying team’s team finish time.
The biggest fish category is a combination of length and girth. Fishing in that category may continue even after a member of a team meets his or her quota.
Hooks must be barbless or the barbs must be crushed down.
We think you will agree that these changes, which emphasize quality over numbers, demonstrate continued conservation leadership and set a good example for others to follow.
One of the unique aspects of this event is that every participant who is present at the awards ceremony has an opportunity to win one of the many great prizes our generous supporters contribute each year in an open lottery.
The entry fee is $45. The money raised helps to support club youth activities.
We strongly suggest that you make ferry reservations as soon as possible by calling the SSA at 508-477-8600 (steamshipauthority.com).
If you can donate a prize it would be much appreciated. Contributions can be shipped to Catch & Release Tournament, Coop's Bait & Tackle, 147 West Tisbury Road, Edgartown, MA 02539, or dropped off on Saturday. If you have any questions please call tournament committee member Cooper Gilkes at 508-627-3909, or e-mail Nelson Sigelman at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Catch and Release Committee
Please be aware we have changed the rules for 2023.
Rules are available online and at local tackle shops prior to the tournament date. Please read the rules carefully. Plaques will be awarded in one of three categories:
Roberto Germani Trophy
The team that reaches its fish quota with the earliest time. Roberto Germani, an island "character," believed strongly in the philosophy of catch and release. For Roberto, watching a fish was often as enjoyable as catching it.
Sonny and Joey Beaulieu Trophy
The largest fish (total measurement of length and girth) released by a team member. Sonny and Joey Beaulieu, father and son, died in a tragic boating accident along with Fred Loud and his son Adam. Sonny helped to begin this tournament.
Arnold Spofford Trophy
The team, members of which use one style fly (lose a fly and you must use an exact duplicate), that reaches their fish quota with the earliest time. Arnold Spofford was a gentleman and accomplished fly tier
The awards ceremony begins at 9:30 am, Sunday morning at MV Rod & Gun Club: 265 The Blvd., Edgartown and a to-go breakfast treats will be provided. One of the unique aspects of this event is that we do not award prizes based on catching fish. Instead, everyone who fishes the tournament, and is present at the Sunday morning awards ceremony has an opportunity to win one of many great prizes contributed by our generous supporters.
Prize donations are greatly appreciated.
Contributions can be shipped to:
Catch & Release Tournament
Coop's Bait & Tackle
147 West Tisbury Road, Edgartown, MA 02539
Or dropped off on Saturday or early Sunday.
The money raised by the tournament benefits a number of club programs. These include the spring Kids Trout Derby, open to any youngster, and a day of fishing for kids with cerebral palsy who attend Camp Jabberwocky.
We strongly suggest that you make ferry reservations as soon as possible.
Vineyard Gazette, June 6, 2017:
At Catch and Release, a Fish Tale for the Ages
MV Times, June 7, 2017:
Surprises aplenty at 26th annual catch and release tourney
MV Times, June 8, 2011:
Catch and release tournament celebrates 20 years