October Meeting at Fat Jacks'

A nice turnout for our first meeting of the new year held at Fat Jacks'. Those in attendance shared in the discussion of whats new for 2019 so far. A few new sponsors getting on board and plans for holding a Kids Contest along with adding Women's bonus prizes were in the talks. All of this in an effort to get more women and kids to participate and experience the joy of shad fishing. Berkley/Abu Garcia is sponsoring the Kid's Contest with the hope that other sponsors get on board. More details to come.

It is anticipated that the 2019 contest will exceed the numbers of last year. It can be done with everyone getting on board and helping with/and for its success. Those wishing to get involved to carry it forward can contact Eric Fistler to offer your help. Volunteers experienced in fundraising and grant writing would be of great assistance.

Plans for the banquet to be held on March 9, 2019 were also discussed. There will be some very nice prizes for those lucky enough to win along with more auction items to bid for. Rob Orchulli will be the chef once again this year presenting his "rated best"  banquet menu.

Bob Mayberry of Mayberry Sales and Service announced that anyone who spends $1000 worth of goods at his shop will receive free entry to the contest. Mayberry's is the Official Marine Dealer for the contest.

photos: Mike Hinkel

Eric  holding the session to an attentive audience       Once again, Fat Jacks' did not disappoint with their awesome servings

New Sponsors for 2018




We proudly support




 The Phillipsburg Volunteer Fire Department

To say the 8th Annual Bi State Shad Fishing Contest was a success would be a monumental understatement. Despite the fickle weather and high flows there were plenty of fish brought to the scale. 170 shad were weighed in over 4 days looking for part of the record $38,350 in prize money. There were 889 contestants vying for the prizes and a chance to win a 16 foot 2018 G3 boat, fitted with a 30hp Yamaha Jet Motor sitting on a Bear Manufacturing Trailer.

The contest paid 10 places with a top prize of $20,000 which was won by Jake Kocsis of Carpentersville, NJ with a shad weighing 5.942 lbs. Here is the list of top 10 winners:


Daily Prizes paid $350 for the heaviest fish, $300 for 2nd $250 for 3rd  and $200 for 4th . The 5th place fish took home a wonderful bucket of fishing gear worth $200 plus sponsored by Abu Garcia, Fenwick, Spider Wire and Berkley. There were also $100 bonus prizes in 5 categories.

The winner of the Boat Package sponsored by Mayberry Marine of Port Murray,  NJ was Philip Dale of Dallas, PA.

Mayberry Marine is the Official Marine Dealership of the Bi State Shad Fishing Contest

Daily and Bonus Prize Winners

Congratulations to all of the winners!

Perhaps the biggest success was the number of youth and young adults who participated in the event right alongside those older persons giving it a try and those who have been shad fishing for years

Age groups were: 19 and under 59 contestants, 20 to 29 =123 contestants, 30 to 39 = 140 contestants, 40 to 49 = 143 contestants, 50 to 59 = 208 contestants, 60 to 69 = 134 contestants, 70 to 79 = 64 contestants, 80 + = 9 contestants.


Fantastic turnout at Fat Jack's to send us off to the contest. Quite the night with a drawing for the generator donated by Mayberry Marine and great news of more fishing related sponsors such as St Croix rods and others. There was also word from Abu Garcia, Berkley, Fenwick, Spiderwire, and their sales group that there will be a cash sponsorship and a kids competition next year. All of the details will follow, but for now the excitement for the fishing getting underway was in the air. Between bites of the fine fare and sips of the good drinks, it was all shad talk.

People were coming and going putting in their applications and buying some last minutes tackle and anchors. In attendance was Tom Sutter, the 87 year old father of contestant and friend to the contest, Tim Sutter. Tom was quite the shad fisherman himself taking a second and a third along with many daily prizes in the Forks of the Delaware Tournament. He truly had a good time smiling all the while sharing in the buzz.

We wish all a safe and enjoyable experience on the river. Please be courteous to your fellow fisherman both on and off the water.

Good Luck!

The winner of the Honda Generator is Tim Hoadley who held the lucky ticket #36. Congratulations to Tim and thanks to all for trying their luck in the raffle

photos by Dave Perruso




Great turnout at the Riverside with great news for the contest. Thanks to everyone who showed up at the meeting last night, for those who couldn't make it, the $15,000 grand prize has been reached. Remember our new sponsors Abu Garcia, Fenwick, Berkley, Pfluegler, and Spider Wire when purchasing your fishing gear. We will hold one last meeting at Fat Jacks' the beginning of next week. We will post date as soon as we get it. Good Luck to everyone this season, and remember safety first.

The group surrounding the boat to be given to one lucky entrant.  Contest Manager, Eric Fistler and Boat Sponsor, Bob Mayberry addressing those in attendance


Photos by Dave Perruso...Boat photo by Joy

Two weeks and a day away from the start of the contest and the good crowd at IL Gaetano's were both chomping on the fine fare, as well as the bit to get to the contest. Shad stories never get old. If anyone wants to learn a thing or two about catching these fish one of these meetings is the place to learn. While shad fishing is not rocket science it comes in a close second, or so it seems at times. Anyway, it is getting close and everything is ahead of and on par with last year's record number of entries. Our next and last meeting before the contest will be held at the Riverside Barr and Grill on Monday, April 16 at 6:30pm. This meeting is like the pep rally before the big game. A great gathering of shad fisherman, a lot of stories and a toast to this year's event.  We certainly hope to see you all there.

photos, by Dave Perruso

A very informative meeting at Fat Jack's revealed that the $15,000 first prize is within reach and that a major fishing manufacturer sales group will be sponsoring and adding packages to the daily prize list. Things are right on schedule for this year's contest and if the weather cooperates here in the next couple of weeks it should be the best yet. The number of applications and sponsorship are ahead of last year. If past events are any indication, these weeks leading up to the contest will see a big jump in applicants. We encourage getting the applications in as early as possible. The next meeting will be held at IL Gaetano's in Phillipsburg on Tuesday, April 10 @ 6:30pm.


photos by Dave Perruso


A big thanks to all who turned out for our annual Buy, Sell, Show, and Tell at the Huntington Volunteer Fire Station 75. A great night with a gang of sign ups for the contest and a lot of goods being bought and sold. Our apologies for those who came looking for the Po' Boy Shrimp Sandwiches and Gumbo Soup....Don't know what happened there...Thanks again for coming out.


Great turnout to welcome Steve's Pizzeria and Italian Family Restaurant to the long list of sponsors to the contest. Steve's offered a great menu of good Italian dishes and the American favorites as well. A bunch more sign ups for the contest and a few more for the Honda generator raffle took place, but the discussion was on shad and the stories of fishing past. A good night every way you look at it.

Thanks to everyone who came out last night to show their support, We had 25 people attend. Thanks also to Steve's Pizza and staff for sponsoring our contest. An update for those not able to attend our meetings, The 2018 contest is well on track for our goal of a $15,000 grand prize. The banquet was a major success, the 254 entries so far, are ahead of last year, and the sponsorship money is also right on track.....Eric

                    photos by Dave Perruso







A good night at Dubs on 5th. Nice crowd and a great announcement of two corporate sponsors coming on board. C.T. Matarazzo Excavating and Masonry along with World Cup Cheerleading. Its great to have them. It was also announced that our Buy, Sell, Show and Tell Swap Meet will be held on Thursday, March 29 at the Huntington Station 75 Firehouse.

On another note applications are ahead of last year as well as the sponsorship's. Everything is shaping up to make 2018's event the best ever.

photos by DavePerruso



It was a great night at the 2nd Annual Spring Banquet. In attendance was Yamaha representative, Ron Zostocki, whose talk gathered a big round of applause as he expressed Yamaha's commitment to the contest going forward. Yamaha is all things marine and is dedicated to the education of the public to the resources we all share  The exceptional menu served up by Rob Orchulli and his fiance Joanne Frezza Saydek was once again above and beyond. Bob Mayberry played auctioneer and raffled off a top end Stihl chainsaw. The bidding was fast and steady until it topped out at $210. Not too shabby, to say the least, for both Bob's inaugural effort. More fun followed as it was time for the tricky tray drawings and as usual some were luckier than others in winning some very nice prizes. A great night indeed!



Great turnout at Il Gaetano

photos by Dave Perruso

A lot of great food to go along with great discussion on everything from what's happening with the contest in the days and weeks ahead to what is the best color of spoons and darts. Our good sponsors Devlen and Holly Mackey of Mackey's Orchards were in attendance.  It was great to have them witness and participate in the discussions to see first hand the dedication of all involved with putting on the contest. Rich Staagard, once again, stepped up as a Fisherman Sponsor. The sponsorships are greatly appreciated and go a long way to the success of the event.

Once again this year, StackFish.com will be sponsoring the contest. The website is one of the most comprehensive and story filled fishing websites on the internet covering every state and every species that fishermen pursue. There is a forum to share in methods and ideas as well as catch reports to see who is catching what and where. Thank you, Jim Brazil, fellow fisherman and founder of StackFish for being aboard. We encourage all to check out and join this fine website.

It was obvious that the coming shad run was on the minds of all. Entries and sponsorship's are ahead of last year's numbers and the request for banquet tickets is moving along smoothly. By all indications the banquet should be as good, if not better, than last year. There will be bingo for the ladies and the kids, as well as the silent auctions and tricky trays. Once again, we are asking all for item contributions, sporting related or not, that all would enjoy. The banquet will be held on Saturday, March 10 at he Alpha Firehouse at 1109 Lee Ave in Alpha NJ from 6 to 9 PM. There will be tickets at the door.

The issue of parking at the Phillipsburg launch came up once again, and once again the answers are with the Phillipsburg town council whose next meeting will be March 6th at 7:00pm. There is much discussion on the matter as they try to sort it out to the satisfaction of all parties. We have been assured in the past that some type of permit system will be in place. We'll see. All are invited to attend this public meeting to support the fishermen using the lot or to voice their concerns. To be clear the parking fees for the days of the tournament are waived. We will update all of the details once they are finalized.

Our next meeting will be at Dubs on 5th on Thursday, March 15th at 6:30 PM while our annual Buy, Sell, Show and Tell, Swap Meet will be held on March 29th at 6:30pm in the Huntington Station 75 Fire Hall in Pohatcong.


A good crowd on an iffy winter night showed up at the Riverside Barr and Grill for an informative, productive meeting. Two in that crowd were Ron Zastocki, the District Service Manager and Darryl Mosher, the District Marketing Manager of Yamaha Marine. Ron and Darryl spoke to the commitment of Yamaha and G3 to the boating and fishing community and to their support of the Bi State Shad Fishing Contest. They discussed what Yamaha is doing as a company in its efforts to promote the conservation of our resources while reaching out to youth and education in the marine field. Ron also spoke to the overall involvement of many groups through one to keep the checks and balance that is needed to keep our fisheries intact. The Jersey Coast Anglers Association is one such organization as is the The New Jersey Outdoor Alliance. Their mission is critical for the proliferation and protection of all species in freshwater and salt.

The discussion on getting youth involved in fishing and the outdoors resulted in forming plans for a youth fishing day. Stay close for more on this effort to get kids on the water. There was also talk of trying, once again, to get a competition fishing day between the mayors of Easton and Phillipsburg and/or other community leaders.

Contest Manager, Eric Fistler, brought it to the attention of all that our great sponsor Tees by Bees, Screen Printing and Embroidery will be promoting the contest with radio spots on three local radio stations for 3 weeks ahead of the event. This is a big deal and we can not thank Eddie and Tina enough! He also announced and thanked Barney Dailey for reaching out to Pennsylvania Outdoor News and getting advertising space that was included in 7000 copies of their news magazine to be handed out at the Great American Outdoor Show currently running in Harrisburg, PA.

Duke Frinzi announced that he will not be holding his one day shad tourney due to the recent loss of his love and companion LeeAnn Ivins. He invited all who took part to a gathering at the Riverside Barr and Grill for a Celebration of Life in memory of LeeAnn in its place. The celebration is Saturday, April 14 at 2:00 pm.

The parking issue of the Phillipsburg launch lot is to be rewritten to accommodate in favor of the fishermen to what looks like the same amendments written in July, but never read. The ordinance was just repealed and will be replaced by early spring. There is a work session for the issue of all town parking to take place at the Fisher House at 535 Fisher Ave. Phillipsburg, on February 13 at 7 pm.


      photos by Dave Perruso                                        

Another nice turnout at Fat Jacks to roll into the new year. Of all of the news, the best was the announcement that the Yamaha Outboard Jet, the G3 Boat, and Bear trailers have been secured and will once again be offered as a prize to one lucky entrant of the contest. Applications are starting to come in and sponsors are coming on board.

Our 2nd Annual Banquet is scheduled for March the 10th which will be held at the Alpha Firehouse once again. Stay tuned for ticket information.

photos by Dave Perruso

The Bi State Shad Fishing Contest supports our friends in the salt.

The  Jersey Coast Anglers Association


The seven year moratorium of fracking in the Delaware River Basin has come to an end. Please follow the links to be informed of the new proposals and take steps to either attend the public hearings or to send in your comments. It is an issue all shad fishermen should be aware of and concerned with. It should require our undivided attention to keep our river clean for future generations. Thank you.



Delaware River Basin Commission|Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Public Hearing

Public Comment/Input Form

Scholarship Offered by the Delaware River Shad Fishermen's Association

Best Numbers of Returning Shad Fry in Many Years



Great attendance for the November meeting at Dub's on 5th. A lot of discussion on the upcoming season and of course news of the contest. The best news was that Yamaha Outboards will once again be sponsoring a brand new Jet outboard for the 2018 event while the boat and trailer are in the works through Mayberry Marine. A list of sponsors both business and individual have already stepped up to the plate. Things are off to a good start.

John Berry of the DRSFA announced that there will be a public meeting and hearing on the removal of the Columbia Dam on the Paulinskill River. The meeting is to be held on Monday, November 20th from 6:00 to 9:00pm at the North Warren Regional High School Auditorium at 10 Noe Road in Blairstown, NJ 07825. The public at large is invited to attend to voice their support in the effort to remove the dam.  

John also expressed the importance of the shad restoration projects and the need for all to be involved in the effort either in support or hands on.

Eric Fistler announced that the entry fee will increase to $40 for adults and $30 for kids 15 and under. $5 of the fee will go toward membership of all entrants into the Delaware River Shad Fishermens Association to help in their continuing conservation efforts.



Mark your calendar for Saturday, March 10 for the 2nd Annual Bi State Shad Fishing Contest Banquet

Join us for a great night of great food, great fun, and some great prizes!

In Memory