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I am curious to see if you have any advice on how to start a local bass club. After doing multiple searches I have not  been able to locate many open tournaments or clubs in my area for the non boater. I plan on purchasing a boat in the future but it just isn't in the budget at the moment but I would like to have the ability to compete. Since I have been unsuccessful in finding a club to join in or around Shelbyville Ky I thought that I may just start one. Any advise or direction would be much appreciated.

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First thing is you will need to ask around to those you know that fish if a club is something they would be interested in doing.

Second thing is to set a few rules and regulations up for the club. Maybe the cost of each tournament, how much will it pay out to the winner, second place. What about an extra cost for big fish. Weigh scales for weighing the fish,

Third, do you plan to elect a president, secretary, treasurer and so on? Any plans to to fish other lakes? Meeting time for the club to meet and where.

This will take time to begin the process of setting up a club where everyone knows and understands the rules set forth. It does take some time to do this but once you have the ground floor setup it will go pretty smooth...hopefully.

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What about memberships with B.A.S.S? Would it be wise to contact an established club like B.A.S.S and start a new chapter? My buddy did that with Ducks Unlimited,a little different scenario I know but non the less he can use the name of the organization to help lure new members. Ultimately it would be a goal to participate in larger tournaments and possibly seek attention of sponsors.

As far as species, it is something that could be discussed as a real possibility but I would say it should be a special event. 

Do you happen to have an example of a set of rules. I would assume they would pertain to boat type, engine size, pole limit, etc. But what other rules would be a good idea?  

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Rules such as;

1- fish limit, ours is a 5 fish limit

2- What type of fish count, ours are largemouth, spotted, smallmouth bass.

3- How many anglers per boat, ours is 2 max.

4- Cost of yearly membership, Ours is $100

5- Cost of tournament fee, Ours is $25

6- What lakes, or waters to be fished, Ours are voted on each month for the next month.

7- Pay out for winnings, Ours pay out the top three boats (team)

8- Team or angler competition - Ours is a team (per boat) competition.

9-  Winning for year end angler of the year, Our pays out the top three anglers for that year.

10- Elect directors, Our is we voted for President, Vice-president, Secretary, tournament director. Each January we vote for the upcoming year as to who holds that position.

11- Club meeting, Our is we meet every month, the Thursday before our upcoming tournament. To pay tournament fees, to set non boaters with boaters if we have any openings. Go over any new rules and concerns. Accepts new members.

These are just the beginning of how to arrange a good club. The main thing is everyone understands and agrees for the most part on things. This will make everything run smoother as at weigh in everyone is not looking at everyone asking questions. This is what the club meeting are for. The day of the tournament should be fun and having a great time fishing with your buddies.

We have been very lucky to bring on sponsors that have purchased us all club fishing jerseys and a radio show that talks about us each week. The main objective is we all love to fish and have fun. Yes, the winning of money are just an added bonus but all in all every member we have now it's more about us just having bragging rights until the next month and laughing and joking with one another. All in all we all hope at years end with our banquet we all have won some tournaments, some money and learned a lot from fishing with everyone to be ready to hit the lakes for the upcoming season.

At years end all the money the club has brought in via membership fees and tournament fee are paid back out to its members by winning tournaments, big fish, and the angler of the year points standing. We are a non-profit club, it's our members club, no big "I" in this  club. Just worm throwing, crankbait cranking, jig jiggling, shaky head shaking people who love those bass on the end of our lines.


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