The Greenbrier River Fly Fishing Classic is set to kick off its 9thannual catch and release smallmouth bass tournament this weekend (7am-7pm on May 20) as anglers get together to vie for the chance at bragging rights as the top smallmouth fly angler on the Greenbrier.
Participants will compete for trophies and prizes for the largestbass and most total inches caught. The tournament, a one-day event, run as a non-profit organization has been held for the past 9 years along the Greenbrier River from Cass to Hinton, with anglers heading to the Greenbrier County Youth Camp that same evening for dinner, entertainment, and awards.
It’s not all about the awards however, the tournament serves as an effort to generate interest in the sport of fly-fishing and to engage the community on supporting local conservation efforts. Proceeds from the event are directed to groups that provideoutdoor opportunities for youth and veterans and groups who are actively involved in local conservation efforts. This year’s tournament proceeds will go towards Project Healing Watersveterans, The Greenbrier County Youth Camp, The Paul William Hughes Conservation Fund and The Greenbrier River Watershed Association. Over the past 9 years, the tournament has raised nearly $30,000 for various outdoor organizations and conservation efforts.
Over the years, the organization has provided guides and volunteers to float our nations wounded and disabled veterans for the tournament and has acquired canoes, kayaks, and fly-fishing gear that the Greenbrier County Youth Camp is able to use to provide campers with opportunities to access and enjoy all the resources the Greenbrier River has to offer.
“This event wouldn’t be possible without the tremendous support from our local community,” said George Simms, one of the founders and President of the non-profit organization. “We have a lot of businesses and individuals throughout the region that have generously supported our efforts year after year through donations and dedicating time and resources to ensure that we can operate successfully. This event serves as a catalyst for local conservation efforts and making sure that we can engage new participants in the outdoors and see that our wounded and disabled veterans can reconnect while at the same time creating a fun atmosphere to showcase the abundant natural resources our region has to offer.”
The banquet following this year’s event will be held at the Greenbrier County Youth Camp on Saturday, May 20th at 7pm and will be open to the public. The evening will feature live music by Greenbrier County native and Nashville recording Artist Jeffery Russell, a cash bar sponsored by Hawk Knob Cidery and Big Draft Brewing, dinner prepared by the Greenbrier County Youth Camp, raffle prizes and more. For those interested in getting involved in the tournament or attending the banquet, more information can be found on the organizations Facebook page under Greenbrier River Fly Fishing Classic.