Sixty specially tagged redfish are the STAR attraction of the 22nd annual 2011 CCA Texas State of Texas Anglers’ Rodeo (STAR) sponsored by the Texas Ford Dealers and Tilson Home Corporation. CCA Texas/STAR officials released 60 redfish ranging from 20-1/2 to 25-1/2 inches in length.
These tagged redfish were released the week of May 23, throughout 600 miles of Texas coastal waters, from Port Arthur to South Padre Island.
“Since redfish can grow up to one inch per month, we must release fish that meet all the state regulations,” said Bill Kinney, tournament director.
The STAR fishing tournament draws approximately 40,000 participants, making it one of the world’s largest saltwater fishing tournaments. This year’s event kicked off at sunrise on Saturday, May 28 and will end on Labor Day, September 5 at 5p.m.
Keeper-sized prizes can be claimed by STAR anglers who bring in the first 10 tagged redfish. The first five winners will drive home in a 2011 loaded Ford F-150 “Texas Edition” XLT SuperCab, pulling a brand new 23′ Haynie BigFoot boat rigged with a Mercury 150L OptiMax motor and Coastline trailer. The next five tagged redfish winners will each claim a 23′ Haynie BigFoot boat with a Mercury 150L OptiMax motor and Coastline trailers
Last year 13 tagged redfish were caught, but only six anglers claimed prizes. The others, unfortunately, were not registered for the CCA Texas/STAR.
Other fish can net big rewards in the tournament. STAR contestants who catch the largest speckled trout in the north, central and southern regions of the Texas Coast will each take home the Shoalwater 22′ Legend, powered with a Mercury 150L OptiMax and McClain trailer. STAR blue water anglers who land the heaviest kingfish, dorado and ling (cobia) in the Offshore Division will each win the awesome Explorer by Dargel 216 Blue Water Series boat prize to cruise the big waters along with a Mercury 150XL OptiMax outboard and McClain trailer. In the Inshore Division the Blue Wave 180 V Bay boat rigged with a Mercury 90ELPT OptiMax outboard and McClain trailer will also be given to the anglers for netting the biggest flounder, gafftop and sheepshead.
In hopes of luring more youth to the sport of fishing, the STAR Scholarship Divisions offer a total of ten college scholarships in $20,000 and $50,000 increments. STAR participants, ages 6-10, who catch the largest flounder, sheepshead or gafftop will each be awarded a $50,000 college scholarship. Participants, 11-17 years of age, who catch the largest flounder, sheepshead or gafftop, as well as, the largest speckled trout in each of the three Texas Coast regions (north, central and south) will each be awarded a $20,000 college scholarship. In addition to these nine scholarship offerings participants, ages 6-17 years old in 2011, are eligible for a bonus drawing that will net one lucky youth a $20,000 college scholarship even if the participant never wets a line or enters a single fish during the entire tournament!
As a reminder, anglers under 18 years are eligible to win the scholarships and all other prizes (truck/boat packages and boat packages) offered by the CCA Texas/STAR Tournament.
Major sponsors for the 22nd annual CCA Texas/STAR Tournament include the Texas Ford Dealers, Tilson Home Corporation, Mercury Marine, Academy Sports & Outdoors, NRG Energy, Whataburger, Ozarka, Houston Community Newspapers, Fox Sports Houston, Fox Sports Southwest, Time Warner Cable Media, Comcast, Haynie Boats, Shoalwater Boats, Explorer by Dargel Boats, Blue Wave Boats, Easterly, Texas Fish & Game Magazine, Costa Sunglasses, Texas Oilman’s Invitational Charity Fishing Tournament, Coastline Trailers, McClain Trailers, Chris’s Marine, Mt. Houston Marine and Coastal Backwater Marine.
For more information, including a list of weigh-in stations, instant-entry registration locations in your area and weekly leader board updates, go to http://www.startournament.org.
CCA Texas is a nonprofit organization of sportfishing enthusiasts and conservationist working to save the natural resources of Texas coastal waters. CCA Texas’ Web page can be found at http://www.ccatexas.org.