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Weekly Creel : Angling & Conservation News

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Welcome to the Weekly Creel, a compilation of regional news and announcements for anglers and outdoor enthusiasts of the Chesapeake Bay region. Please email us directly at to have your organization’s news item or event listing considered for next week’s column. Per usual, here are direct links to the lastest, local fishing reports from Reel Chesapeake, On The Water, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Anglers Sports Center, and FishTalk Magazine. The leading photograph (above): Happy fall fishing! Photo taken at Annapolis Waterworks Park in November ’22 by yours truly.

Atlantic States Schedule Striped Bass Hearings

The Atlantic coastal states of Maine through Virginia have scheduled hearings to gather public input on Draft Addendum II to Amendment 7 to the Interstate Fishery Management Plan for Atlantic Striped Bass, which considers management measures designed to support stock rebuilding by reducing fishing mortality to the target in 2024.

Maryland’s is scheduled for December 6th, 6–8 p.m., at Calvary United Methodist Church in Annapolis. Virginia’s is December 7th, 6–8 p.m., at VMRC offices in Fort Monroe. For a complete list of all hearings and how to participate, click here.

Oyster Stew Winners Announced

Photo by Sharon Thorpe, courtesy Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum.

Some fun culinary news with a Chesapeake twist. At last Saturday’s OysterFest in St. Michaels, the culinary team from Blue Heron Catering took first place honors at the Oyster Stew Competition, as part of the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum’s annual event dedicated to everything oysters. A grand total of 329 people lent their voices to determine the winner amongst five different cooks. Blue Heron Catering’s “Stew A” arose victorious. Ruse at Wildset’s “Stew B” caught the attention of tasters, taking second place. Theo’s Steakhouse’s “Stew C” came in third. CBMM’s new Welcome Center greeted roughly 3,500 guests at this year’s OysterFest. The new building is now the point of admission to campus, and CBMM will celebrate its grand opening on December 2nd. Learn more about the new center at

Delaware Wetlands Conference Announced

Photograph courtesy DNREC.

Registration is now open for the 10th Delaware Wetlands Conference to be held February 6th and 7th, 2024 at the Chase Center on the Riverfront in Wilmington. The biennial conference is presented by the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control and organized by the DNREC Wetland Monitoring and Assessment Program. 

The two-day event showcases the importance of wetlands in Delaware and across the Mid-Atlantic region. The conference brings together scientists, educators, natural resource managers, planners, county, state and federal representatives, and community leaders. As has been the conference’s calling card since it was initially held in 2001, attendees will gain insight into current research on tidal and non-tidal wetlands, the value of the region’s wetlands, and the impact that managing them for environmental benefits has on the community. More than 400 experts and enthusiasts from the region and beyond are expected to gather at the biennial conference.

Online registration and information about the event, including sponsorships and the preliminary agenda is available at

New James River Education Center Opens

Rendering courtesy James River Association.

This week, the James River Association (JRA) celebrated the grand opening of their Upper James River Education Center located in Amherst County’s Riveredge Park. Through generous funding from local foundations and donors, including a Century Fund Grant from the Greater Lynchburg Community Foundation, JRA was able to create a dynamic campus of facilities including renovated indoor teaching space and offices, multiple outdoor classrooms, a new river access trail and landing, and a historic batteau.  

“The new Upper James River Center will strengthen the Lynchburg region’s connection to the James River and help it leverage all of the benefits that the river can provide,” said Bill Street, President and CEO of JRA. “We are incredibly grateful for all of the community support to make this project a reality.”

The Upper James River Education Center is the first of three JRA River Education Centers to be opened across the watershed as part of its James Changer Campaign. The organization plans to finish the James A. Buzzard River Education Center in Richmond during the summer of 2024 and hopes to begin enhancements to its Lower James River Education Center in Williamsburg in the coming months. Through the James Changer Campaign, JRA also added the Longview, a 50-foot floating classroom, to its fleet of education vessels. To find out more, visit

And that’s a wrap for this week’s Creel. If you have news to share, please send an email to