How do I join?
The way to join our organization is by joining one of our local clubs or forming a club of your own, it just takes six members to form a club or click here to see the list of our clubs, and contact the member listed. You may want to contact several clubs in your area to compare, because each club is run a little differently. The best time to join a club is usually between December and March; however you can join many clubs any time during the year. If you have questions about starting a new club please contact the President at firstname.lastname@example.org or for starting a Junior club email@example.com
Who are we?
We are the official statewide organization for TBF (The Bass Federation) and FLW Outdoors affiliated clubs. We are a non-profit membership organization. Our purpose is to take a leadership role among our members, the general public and youth in education and development of: fishing and boating safety, strategy and ethics; respect and protection of the environment; and an appreciation of basic rules of sportsmanship.
What do we do?
We currently hold eight State run adult tournaments, plus our Junior State Championship annually in Wisconsin, including qualifying the top 12 finishers from our Adult State Championship. This is known as our State Team. Wisconsin’s State Team every year then competes in the TBF Northern Divisional Tournament against other Midwest states, then sending the top two anglers from each state to compete in the TBF Federation National Championship tournament. We hold a State Convention each winter, and have Club Representatives meetings two times per year. We fund and qualify two youths from our Junior State Championship to go on to the National Guard Junior World Championships. We also participate in lobbyist and educational efforts to support conservation issues. With additional funding, we would like to conduct more statewide youth and conservation projects. At the local level, each of our clubs also conducts their own tournaments, as well as their own youth, conservation, and community service projects. Some of our clubs have even won national awards for their projects.
How are we different from other tournament organizations?
Although catch and release bass tournaments are a part of our Federation, they are not the only aspect. This is a grass roots organization designed for beginner anglers, as well as the advanced. One of the most important aspects of our clubs is that the experienced members fish with new members teaching them the sport of bass fishing while they compete. Even the most experienced bass fishermen learn new ideas each year by fishing with other anglers during competition. All our members compete as individuals, not pairs, so that our anglers fish with quite a variety of other people throughout the year.
Our tournament locations change every year, moving all around the state, so that our members learn new waters and new techniques. Participating in our Federation is much more affordable for the average angler than the big money circuits. Although money prizes may be involved at various levels, the money is not the primary focus of competition, and generally is of smaller value than other competitive circuits. However, there is still the opportunity for some members to do very well monetarily in the upper levels of competition. Our Federation is also about promoting the sport of bass fishing among the youth. Each of our clubs are required to do at least one hands-on youth project each year, and we participate in state and national youth projects as well.
Another main focus of our Federation is preserving the bass environment, and promoting conservation issues within our state. We participate in political awareness, work with our state DNR, and try to have influence on state legislature. In general, we are about teaching, fun, conservation, youth, sportsmanship, and competition; many other circuits are just about tournaments and money.
How does our tournament system work?
There are 6 levels of tournament competition in the Federation system in Wisconsin:
1. Competition begins by fishing tournaments in a local club. The number of tournaments varies per club. The top 100% (have to catch at least one fish) of each club goes on to the next level the following year.
2. Wisconsin is divided into four zones. Each zone holds a two-day qualifying tournament in the spring or early summer. With the top 50% from each zone tournament goes on to the next level.
3. Wisconsin holds our State Tournament each summer. This is a two-day event, featuring the best anglers in the state. The top 12 finishers at this tournament comprise our State Team, going on to the next level.
4. The Wisconsin State Team competes against five other States in the TBF Northern Divisional Tournament the following fall. The location of this tournament rotates between the states each year. The Wisconsin members compete together as a team to win prize money, however, the top two finishers from Wisconsin will go on to the next level the following year.
5. Two Federation members from each state team compete in the TBF Federation National Championship each spring. The country is divided into seven divisions, and the two best finishers from each Division will go on to the next level.