12 Expert tips for winning big prizes in West Marine CCA Florida STAR 2022 presented by Yamaha

Leiza Expert

 

The 2022 West Marine CCA Florida STAR presented by Yamaha boasts amazing prizes, is the largest family-friendly saltwater fishing competition in Florida and begins Memorial Day weekend. Anglers across Florida have been participating and winning in CCA Florida STAR for the past 7 years. To date, STAR has awarded over 2.1 million dollars in prizes with $700,000 of that being in college scholarships and non-angling participants have gathered over 7,600 five-gallon buckets of garbage.

2022 STAR over 100-day, family-friendly angling competition offers $500,000 in prizes in 17 divisions, including non-tagged, inshore, and offshore species and runs from May 28th to September 5th.

Here are some expert tips that can help you and your family win big prizes this summer.

1. Register for West Marine CCA Florida STAR 2022 

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Only members in good standing of Coastal Conservation Association, its youth organization, New Tide, who are registered for the 2022 State-wide Tournament Anglers Rodeo, are eligible to participate.

This is important because every year we get calls from anglers who caught a Tagged fish for the West Marine STAR Tagged Redfish division but had not registered for STAR competition. Rather than winning a boat, they get a T-Shirt. 

Don't be that angler. 

When the prizes are drawn, your CCA Membership is verified to be valid and current.

Click here to Register for STAR

2. Be aware of the divisions, species and size requirements

Be aware of the divisions, species and size requirements

West Marine CCA Florida STAR 2022 has over 17 divisions including tagged, non-tagged, inshore and offshore, Ladies and Youth with species like - Redfish, Trout, Snook, Tarpon, Grouper, Kingfish, Mahi-Mahi and Lionfish. Each division has its own set of sponsors, prizes, eligibility criteria as well as species. 

Here are all the divisions you can fish in. Click on each division for details.

Some fish may or may not have a minimum size requirement depending on the species and division.

Click here to view eligible species

3. Familiarize yourself with the rules

 Familiarize yourself with the rules

The Competition will begin at the posted sunrise on Saturday, May 28, 2022, and end at posted sunset on Monday, September 5, 2022. Like all fishing competitions, CCA Florida STAR also has rules that need to be followed by anglers while catching and logging fish.

For example, Fish entered into the competition for prizes must have been caught and landed by the registered participant. Another one is that All fish that are entered into the competition for prizes must have been hooked and caught by the contestant on rod, reel, hook, and line (except for in the Lionfish Division). 

Another important one is that each entry can be submitted in only one competition division or category. Except for Lionfish & trash.

Some rules are specific to the age. For Example, A New Tide member must be at least 6 years old the day before making an entry in the tournament and must be no more than seventeen (17) years old as of May 28, 2022 in order to be eligible to win in the STAR Scholarship Youth Division

Make sure you are familiar with all the rules for the division and species you are fishing in. 

Click here to view all Rules

4. Know where the tagged fish are released

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All coastal counties of Florida have on average four (4) tagged redfish that have been released in areas where anglers are known to catch redfish. A total of 160 Tagged Redfish will be released.

The Florida Keys will have 20 dolphin/Mahi Mahi tagged and released during May in order for those fish to migrate up the east and the west coast of Florida.

This year’s STAR tag is White. Printed on the tag is the year and a special number beginning with FL followed by CCA Florida STAR and the phone number 844-387-STAR (7827).

Where can you have the best opportunity to catch one of these prize-winning tagged redfish? Try Brevard, Citrus and Charlotte Counties they are STAR Destination Counties with double the tagged reds with 8 in each county!. 

Remember, To be eligible to win, each STAR-tagged redfish and the first STAR-Tigress tagged dolphin with the tag still attached to the fish, must be digitally photographed on the 2022 Official STAR measuring device, and electronically submitted.

learn more about Tagged fish

5. Get the Official measuring tape

Get the Official measuring tape

Each entry must include a digital photograph of the fish on or with the Official 2022 STAR measuring device, except for the Lionfish Division and any entries in the Trash Division.

Measuring devices are not purchased for the competition. Simply walk into any of your local participating stores and they will give you one complimentary. All measuring devices will be in the stores after May 13th.

To know where you can find the measuring device in your area, click on the button below:

Find measuring device near you

6. Register your Family members

Register your Family members

West Marine CCA Florida STAR is Florida's largest family-friendly (all ages and experience levels) fishing competition with over 100 days of fishing! It has divisions for Youth (6-17) as well as a dedicated division for Ladies.

No other fishing tournament in Florida has the ability to engage anglers of all ages and experience levels and includes non-anglers who can participate and win simply by collecting trash and debris.

Most divisions have 6 winning places and are determined by a random drawing of all photo entries of fish on the West Marine Official STAR measuring device, it is not the biggest fish that wins, a format that encourages participants of all ages to protect and conserve Florida’s fisheries for future generations.

To date, STAR has awarded over 2.1 million dollars in prizes with $700,000 of that being in college scholarships and non-angling participants have gathered over 7,600 five-gallon buckets of garbage.

Click here to learn about the Scholarships

7. Log more fish - Log every fish

Log more fish - Log every fish

Since Most divisions are determined by a random drawing of all catch photo entries of fish on the Official STAR measuring device, it is NOT the biggest fish that wins.

The more fish you log, the more you compete for the awards. Many anglers log all the fish they catch during the summer. 

In past years, anglers have won great prizes in CCA Florida STAR Competition with just one fish! Sooo.... make sure you are logging every fish - no matter how big or small it is.

Remember, each entry can be submitted in only one competition division or category. One entry per day per division except for the Conservation, Trash & Lionfish division.  The Conservation division , you should log the additional fish (or fish that does not meet the length requirements) in the Conservation division.

Click here to Register for STAR

8. Use the right equipment

Use the right equipment

You should familiarize yourself with what equipment to use for which division. Using the wrong equipment could get your catch disqualified.

For example, All fish entered into the competition for prizes must have been hooked and caught by the contestant on rod, reel, hook, and line (except for in the Lionfish Division). Fish caught on artificial, live baits, or dead natural baits are eligible (except for the Fly Division). There are no line test restrictions in the tournament (except for the Fly Division).

Another example is that Only one-handed rods and single-action reels designed specifically for fly fishing may be used in the fly division.

Make sure you are familiar with all the rules for the division and species you are fishing in. 

Click here to view all Rules

9. Click the picture the right way

Click the picture the right way

Each entry must include a digital photograph of the fish on or with the Official 2022 STAR measuring device, except for the Lionfish Division and any entries in the Trash Division

The entire fish must be clearly seen with its nose on the zero line, providing visibility of total length, except for Tarpon and fish being submitted in the Power Pole Conservation Division. More than one Lionfish may be photographed together with the 2022 STAR measuring device in one photo with each fish clearly displayed in order to confirm the catch number entered.

For the Costa Kick Plastic Trash Division, there must be at least a full five gallon bucket of trash with the Official 2022 STAR measuring device in the photo and there may be more than one bucket in the photo and more than one submission per day. 

Electronic submission of all competition entries must also include the competition division, species, length, time, date, name of angler, and Guide/Captain (if applicable). Each entry can be submitted in only one competition division or category

Make sure you are familiar with all the rules for the division and species you are fishing in. 

Click here to view all Rules

10. Conservation counts

Conservation counts

The Power-Pole Conservation Division is an important aspect of STAR. This Division plays a vital role in helping FWC and other fisheries management groups gather recreational catch data.

All species of fish caught by STAR entrants are eligible for entry in the Conservation Division. The winners of the Conservation Division will be determined by a random drawing of all entries in the division.

The STAR Committee emphasizes the importance of following all FWC regulations regarding the handling of all species. Undersized trout, redfish and snook must also be photographed with STAR measuring device in the water NOT with the fish on the device. In addition, please try and capture the photo in the water using the official STAR measuring device. 

All fish entries in the Conservation Division are required to be photographed on or with the 2022 official STAR Measuring Device.

In the Power Pole Conservation Division anglers may submit more than one entry per competition day, use this division to win more prizes. 

Click here to learn about Conservation division

11. Even Trash can win your prizes

Even Trash can win your prizes

To date, non-angling participants have gathered over 7,600 five-gallon buckets of garbage. 2022 STAR Participants who gather trash while on the water and submit a photo entry of a full 5-gallon bucket full of trash with the West Marine Official 2022 STAR measuring device in their entry are eligible.

For the Trash Division there may be more than one submission per day - so log your trash entries and win prizes.

Click here to learn about Trash division

12. Know about community service hours

Trash

 

Do you know every 5-gallon buckets equates to 30 mins of community service hours for the youth?

Encourage youth around you to participate in Trash division to receive 30 minutes of community service hours for each five-gallon bucket of garbage they collect.

 

 

Florida's largest family-friendly (all ages and experience levels) fishing competition with over 100 days of fishing!
May 28 to September 5, 2022!

 

Fish one day, some days or every day - win awesome prizes with a single catch!

17

Divisions

including tagged, non-tagged, inshore and offshore, Ladies and Youth with species like - Redfish, Trout, Snook, Tarpon, Grouper, Kingfish, Mahi-Mahi and Lionfish.

$500,000

in Prizes 

Boats, motor and trailer packages, cash, marine electronics, Yamaha motors, tackle, scholarships, Gift certificates and much more

Over 100

Days of Fishing

family friendly angling competition - for anglers of all ages and experience levels - most winning places and are determined by a random drawing.

 

Register for STAR
 
$40 for current CCA Florida Members | $75 for 18+
(includes one-year CCA Florida membership)

 

FREE for current, youth CCA Florida Members | $10 for youth, ages 6 to 17
(includes New Tide Membership)

 

[Registration process involves creation of a profile at CCA National and registering for STAR]