Striped Bass Conservation

12th Annual Cheeky Schoolie Tournament - 2023

(photo by Keith Marlor / Fly Fisherman Magazine)
The 12th Cheeky Schoolie Tournament presented by Simms concluded on Saturday May 21st with a record score sheet and record donations to striped bass conservation. Schoolie, as it is called by many, is the world’s largest fly fishing tournament. Team P Rex consisting of Rex Messing and Peter Markano, took first place with a record length of 119.5 inches. Second went to the Flailing Fly Fisherman (Seth Gilroy & Steve Schaeffer) with 119 inches while third was claimed by Team Schoolie (Marc Savaria and Chuck Scott) at 114 inches. Schoolie is a catch-photo and release tournament for fly anglers on Cape Cod. Teams of two anglers combine the inches of their 4 longest striped bass to get their score. The tournament is focused on conservation with all proceeds going to conservation groups Keep Fish Wet, Stripers Forever and the American Saltwater Guide Association. This year they will split $30,756.
“We love this event and love how the angling community comes together to celebrate the fish and work together to make the fishery better,” said Ted Upton, Cheeky CEO. “We think this was the best Schoolie yet.”
The Cheeky Schoolie Tournament, held each spring on Cape Cod, is the largest fly-fishing tournament in the world and is adamantly catch and release. With all the proceeds going to conservation, last year the tournament donated more than $27,000.

During this year’s Cheeky Schoolie Tournament, scientists from UMass Amherst will be working side-by-side with some tournament teams to collect data on how striped bass respond to capture, handling, and release. Their efforts during the Cheeky Schoolie Tournament are a part of a larger study to determine how different angling techniques impact striped bass and what anglers can do to ensure that each striped bass released swims away healthy and strong. With funding from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Sea Grant, data collected by the UMass Amherst team will help refine best practices for the striped bass recreational fishery, inform grassroots efforts by Keep Fish Wet, and guide management decisions.

11th Annual Cheeky Schoolie Tournament - 2022

The Cheeky Schoolie Tournament is about fun and about the fish. All of the proceeds from the tournament go to our selected conservation partners. We love these fish and do everything we can to bring light to their declining population. With the help of our conservation partners we are constantly adapting the rules for less impact on the fish and the best fish handling. 
For one this is an all Catch, photo and release tournament. We have also worked closely with Keep Fish Wet to adapt our rules. 
In 2021 we donated nearly $21,000 to striped bass 2022 we donated EVEN more, with $27,380 being donated to our conservation partners.

This was split between our 3 conservation partners

 Keep Fish Wet, American Saltwater Guides Association, and Stripers Forever

Head over to the Cheeky Blitz Blog for an update on Striper Conservation, Keep Fish Wet best practices, and more.