The Waterman Fly Fishing Tournament 2021

The Waterman Fly Fishing Tournament is a two-day redfish on fly tackle tournament direct benefiting Tampa Bay Waterkeeper. We have an amazing raffle lined up with several high-/high-value products to give away at the Awards Ceremony and Dinner. Proceeds raised will be used to fund our ongoing mission objectives here at Tampa Bay Waterkeeper.

Please see the tournament details below and when you are ready Click on "Open Registration Form" below to be directed to the tournament registration form. After filling out this short form you will check out via PayPal to complete the registration.

Please contact us with any questions: thewaterman@tampawaterkeeper.org

Open Registration Form (Step 1 of 2)

Summary and Quick Info: The Waterman Fly Fishing Tournament is a two-day fly fishing-only, catch & release redfish tournament with an optional Snook Calcutta with a 50/50 cash payout. The proceeds from entry fees , 50% of the Snook Calcutta and raffle tickets purchases directly benefit Tampa Bay Waterkeeper, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. There is no in-person captain's meeting and the weigh-in will be conducted by photo and email. We are limiting the tournament to 50 teams or 100 anglers total. There will be prizes, an award ceremony, dinner (sponsored by Hells Bay Boatworks) and a raffle with several high-end/high-value products!

Please see the rules and details below. These rules and details can also be downloaded as a PDF.

Format

General Format

  • Fly only Redfish Tournament, Catch & Release, Photo Weigh-In by Email.

  • Two Fishing Days. Two Longest Redfish Tournament with Snook Calcutta.

  • Limited to 50 teams or 100 anglers total. There may be additional teams representing tournament sponsors.

  • Tournament will proceed rain or shine. However, if conditions across the west coast of Florida present unsafe conditions the Tournament may be postponed and rescheduled at the tournament committee's discretion.

Prizes

  • First Place/Grand Champion: Original Artwork + Cash (amount to be determined based upon # of tournament entries)

  • Second Place: Prize (tbd) + Cash (amount to be determined based upon # of tournament entries)

  • Third Place: Prize (tbd) + Cash (amount to be determined based upon # of tournament entries)

Schedule

Friday, March 12, 2021
8:00 pm: Mandatory Virtual Captains Meeting via Google Meet. Only one member of each team must attend. Format and Rules will be discussed and questions answered. The link to the Google Meet will be provided by email.

Saturday, March 13, 2021 – Tournament Day #1
7:00 am Lines In!
4:00 pm Lines Out!

4:15pm Deadline to Email Weigh-In Photos

Sunday, March 14, 2021 – Tournament Day #2
8:00 am Lines In!
3:00 pm Lines Out!

3:15pm Deadline to Email Weigh-In Photos
6:00 pm Awards Ceremony, Dinner and Raffle @ Bradenton Yacht Club, 4307 13th Street West, Palmetto, Florida.

6:30pm Deadline to Check-in at Awards Ceremony to be Eligible for 1st, 2nd, or 3rd Place

NOTE: Daylight Savings Time takes effect at 2:00 am on March 14, 2021. The later “lines in” time is intended to exclude dock light fishing. The earlier “lines out” time is intended to accommodate travel time to the Awards Ceremony. Anglers must check in by 6:30 pm to be eligible for awards.

Entry Fee and Registration

Two-Angler team - $250.00 (per team)
Includes two (2) long sleeve microfiber tournament shirts, two (2) Tampa Bay Waterkeeper hats, dinner for two anglers at Awards Ceremony, one (1) raffle ticket for each angler.

Solo-Angler team - $125.00
Includes one (1) long sleeve microfiber tournament shirt, one (1) Tampa Bay Waterkeeper hat, dinner for one angler at Awards Ceremony, one (1) raffle ticket.

Raffle Tickets

  • Additional Raffle Tickets may be purchased at the Awards Ceremony by cash or card.

  • Raffle Tickets may only be purchased by Tournament Anglers

  • Raffle tickets will be $20.00 each or 6 tickets for $100.00

Note: Tournament Fees and Raffle Ticket Purchases are direct contributions to Tampa Bay Waterkeeper, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.

Boundaries

  • West Coast of Florida only

  • Southern Tip of Sanibel Island to the Southern Edge of the Crystal River Power Plant Main Channel.

  • Anglers may launch at any ramp, but must fish within the stated boundaries.

General Rules

  • Maximum of two anglers per each team.

  • USCG Licensed Captains/Fly Fishing Guides are welcome to fish the tournament, however, only one USCG Captain/Fly Fishing Guide will be permitted on each team.

  • Following registration and payment of the tournament fee, a team member must pick up a laminated Tournament Card at designated locations. Designated locations will be provided on our website and social media once determined.

  • Each team is responsible for providing its own measuring device which will be a standard carpentry/construction measuring tape. Any other measuring device will not be permitted.

  • Each team is responsible for providing its own black permanent marker.

  • Upon registration and payment of the tournament fee, each team will be assigned a team number. The team number must be prominently displayed in black permanent marker on the Tournament Card.

  • To differentiate fish caught on Day 1 vs. Day 2, a daily code word will be posted on the Tampa Bay Waterkeeper Instagram and Facebook page at 7:00 am on Tournament Day #1 and 8:00am on Tournament Day #2. The daily code word must be clearly and legibly written on the Tournament Card in black permanent marker.

  • Teams must provide a photo of measured fish on top of or immediately adjacent to the measuring tape so that the length of the fish can be clearly determined. The nose of fish on the 0’’ mark must be visible in the photograph.

  • Tail of the measured fish may be pinched.

  • Fish will be measured rounded up to the closest quarter inch.

  • Fly only

  • No scent may be applied to the fly

  • No chumming with live or dead bait

  • Tournament anglers may not fish within 100 yards of any person or vessel that is chumming or fishing with live or dead bait.

  • Tournament anglers may not fish an area which has been chummed with live or dead bait within one (1) hour of the person or vessel vacating the chummed area.

  • Wade fishing is permitted. However, if wade fishing from a skiff/boat/paddle craft, both anglers must exit the skiff/boat/paddle craft. One angler is permitted to wade back to the skiff/boat, release anchor and drive the skiff/boat angler/fishing area. For example, teams are not permitted to drop an angler off atone of a fishing area and then drive a distance away and anchor(i.e. leap frogging) nor drop an angler off to wade fish and then drift or pole a flat by himself/herself.

  • Respect and courtesy to all tournament and recreational anglers/boaters is mandatory.

  • Approximately 200 yards distance must be given to all tournament anglers. If a skiff is poling a shoreline/flat, the second arriving team must approach the shoreline/flat from the stern of the skiff present upon arrival. Otherwise teams are expected to use the best judgment given the conditions (sun, wind and tide) to avoid cutting off another team.

  • Violation of rules may result in disqualification at the tournament committee’s discretion.

Calcutta Snook

  • $25 per team with 50% of the proceeds donated to Tampa Bay Water Keeper.

  • The team participating in the Calcutta with the longest single Snook of the Tournament caught on fly tackle wins the Calcutta.

  • The winner of the Calcutta takes the remaining pot after 50% donation to Tampa Bay Water Keeper.

  • Participants in the Calcutta may submit one Snook photo per day.

Weigh-In Procedure

Redfish photos (with measuring tape, tournament placard, team number and daily code word visible) and Calcutta Snook photos (with tournament placard, team number and daily code word visible) must be sent by email to thewaterman@tampawaterkeeper.org within 15 minutes of lines out on each tournament day (4:15 pm on Day 1 and 3:15 pm on Day 2).

  • The weigh-in email should have a subject line as follows:

    • “Waterman Weigh In – Team Name and Team Number – Day 1”

  • The weigh-in email should follow the following format in the body of the email:

    • Team Name and Team Number, Day 1

    • Redfish #1: (length in inches)

    • Redfish #2: (length in inches)

    • Calcutta Snook: (length in inches)

  • Emails received after 4:15 pm on Day 1 will be disqualified.

  • Emails received after 3:15 pm on Day 2 will be disqualified.

  • Each team will receive a response email indicating that their weigh-in was received timely with the length of each fish weighed in as determined by tournament officials.

  • If a weigh in email is disqualified, but the team indicates that the weigh in email was sent before the deadline, the tournament committee will review the team member’s email “sent” folder and that “sent” time will control.

  • Tournament anglers are encouraged to not wait until the last minute to send weigh in emails. Tournament anglers are also encouraged to consider and plan for the risk of not having sufficient cellular reception to send weigh-in emails based upon their location.

  • Only two weigh-in Redfish photos and one Snook may be submitted by email per tournament day. If more than two redfish photos are sent, tournament officials will only score the first two photos received. Please do not send more than two Redfish photos and one Snook photo per day.

  • Anglers are required to have their weigh in photos available for inspection at the Awards Ceremony/Dinner, if necessary.

After sending the weigh in email, we ask that each Team post their weigh-in photos and individual photos of the angler holding the fish on their social media accounts with hashtags #tampabaywaterkeeper and #thewaterman prior to the Awards Banquet.

Scoring

Redfish - Two longest redfish caught between Day 1 and Day 2.

  • Example A: Team X weighs in a 25” redfish and a 20” redfish on Day #1. On Day #2, Team X weighs in a 30” redfish and a 21” redfish on Day #2. Team X’s total score is the combination of its two biggest redfish = 55”

  • Example B: Team X weighs in no fish on Day #1. On Day #2, Team X weighs in a 30” redfish and a 28” redfish. Team X’s total score is = 58”

Calcutta Snook - Longest Snook Submitted by team participating in the Snook Calcutta.

Winners and Prizes

First Place / Grand Champion
Highest combination of two longest redfish between Day #1 and Day #2

  • Prize - Original Artwork + Cash (amount to be determined based upon # of tournament entries)

Second Place
Second highest combination of two longest redfish between Day #1 and Day #2

  • Prize + Cash (amount to be determined based upon # of tournament entries)

Third Place
Third highest combination of two longest redfish between Day #1 and Day #2

  • Prize + Cash (amount to be determined based upon # of tournament entries)

Tie Breaker:

  • In the event of a tie for 1st, 2nd or 3rd place the tie breaker will be a casting completion of distance and accuracy.

  • Each team will select on angler from the team who will perform one (1) distance cast and one (1) accuracy cast. One (1) point will be awarded for each foot of distance. One (1) point will be deducted from the distance score for every inch between the fly and the target on the accuracy cast (distance 60ft). Each angler will have one practice cast for distance and one practice cast for accuracy. The first cast taken is the practice cast. The practice cast does not count toward the score. Highest score wins the tie breaker. Each angler will use the same rod, reel and line for the tie breaker which will be supplied by the tournament officials.

Current Donations from our Sponsors for Raffle and Prizes

  • Hells Bay Boatworks- Dinner Sponsor

  • Carbon Marine - Donating up to 24ft G3LR Push Pole

  • 3 Daughters Brewing - Beverage sponsor for Awards Dinner

  • RED Medical Legal, LLC - Monetary donation

  • Powerpole - Donating a gift certificate for up to an 8 foot Powerpole (winner may use the certificate to choose a shorter/smaller Powerpole)

  • LIVE Watersports - Donating a paddleboard

  • Rhodan - Donating a 12 volt trolling motor (price can be applied to purchase of a 24volt trolling motor)

  • Fishpond USA - donating a $150.00 gift card

  • Orvis - Donating an 8wt Helios 3 fly rod

  • Cortland - Donating Six Fly Lines and Six Spools of Leader

  • Scott Fly Rods - Donating a fly rod

  • Chico Fernandez - Donating a signed copy of "Fly Fishing For Bonefish" and signed copy of "Fly Fishing for Redfish"

  • Monte Burke - Donating four signed copies of "Lords of the Fly"

  • Artist Yusniel Santos - Donating three original fish paintings

  • Artist Cody Richardson - Donating two original Florida license plate fish sculptures for the raffle

  • Compound Board Shop (Fly Shop) - Product package valued at $250.00

  • Smith Action Optics - Donating multiple pairs of sunglasses.

  • Tampa Fishing Outfitters - Donating a $250.00 gift card

  • RCI Optics - Donating sunglasses

  • Safety Harbor Outfitters - Donating a gift certificate for apparel

  • Fresh Catch Coffee - Donating a prize basket with coffee and other items

  • Florida Fantasy Fishing Camp - Donating one day at the Florida Fantasy Fishing Camp for child to participate in the camp with guided fishing trip.

































Chico Fernandez


Monte Burke, Author of Lords of the Fly




Artist Cody Richardson


Artist Yusniel Santos




PLATINUM SPONSOR

Hess Spinal & Medical Centers has specialized in treating the victims of auto accidents since 2001. Hess has several medical centers located throughout the Tampa Bay area including Bradenton, Brandon, Clearwater, Lakeland, Lutz/Wesley Chapel, New Port Richey, Palm Harbor, Pinellas Park, Plant City, Riverview, Spring Hill, St. Petersburg, Carrollwood, Town & Country, South Tampa, Temple Terrace, and Winter Haven. Tampa Bay Waterkeeper thanks Hess Spinal & Medical Center for their support of our conservation efforts!!! Contact Hess Spinal & Medical Centers at 800-618-4377 or through their website at https://hessspinalandmedicalcenters.com/