Our club meets on the first Friday of each month 7:30PM at the American Legion located at 200 Columbia Turnpike in East Greenbush. Prospective members are voted on after attending 5 club functions which include monthly meetings, club events, and non-points tournaments. Prospective members are allowed to participate in tournaments while earning their five functions, but for points tournaments can only be in the optional lunker pool.
The Club meets twelve months of the year. Members are required to attend at least half of the monthly meetings, but encouraged to attend every meeting. It is not unusual for members to bring spouses/significant others to the meetings. We discuss Club business during the off-season: schedules, rule changes, issues affecting our sport, and try to have a methods focused fishing discussion during each meeting. We feel strongly that the meetings provide an opportunity for socialization and relationship development that have kept us a strong cohesive group. We also try to do some kind of a service project during the year and usually do a holiday collection for a worthy charity.
Our season consists of six points tournaments, a partners pike tournament, a partners bass tournament, a couples tournament and a kids tournament. Members are required to fish at least half of the points tournaments to maintain their membership. The six points tournaments usually consist of two or three two-day tournaments and the rest are one day tournaments.
Our schedule generally includes events on Lake Champlain at Rouses Points and Ticonderoga. We sometimes travel as far west as Oneida Lake. In a typical season we complete the season with tournaments at more local venues that may include Saratoga Lake, Sacandaga Reservoir, the Mohawk River, or Lake Bomoseen in Vermont. The schedule varies some year to year. There is travel and overnight lodging on occasion. Our annual tournament schedule is usually announced in January to give members the opportunity to plan for our tournaments and to make motel reservations for travel tournaments. A Vermont non-resident fishing license is required when we schedule a points tournament on Lake Bomoseen or Northern Lake Champlain (Rouses Pt/Plattsburgh).
The points tournaments are draw tournaments where boaters are randomly paired with a non-boater (co-angler). If there are not enough non-boaters to provide each boater with a co-angler, the boaters are sent out alone. It is not necessary to own a boat or possess boating experience to become a member of the club. At this time we have more boaters than non-boaters so there is no worry that an active member will not have a ride for a tournament. Most boaters are also willing to take non-boaters along when they pre-fish tournament waters, but there is an expectation that such riders would help share the daily fuel oil and launch expenses. Entering the club as a non-boater gives an angler the opportunity to fish with many different anglers and thus is a great opportunity to learn different techniques used on our tournament waters to find and catch fish.
Members are expected to provide their own pfd (life preserver) and fishing tackle. Coast Guard approved life vests (pfd) must be worn at all times when the gas engine on the boat is running.
The club is very safety conscious and safe boating practices are used at all times. We are also conscious of our image as we are very visible on the water and at launch sites and we expect all members to act courteously toward other anglers and
members of the public while on the water and at launch sites.
Entry fees for the points tournaments are $25 per day of fishing. The optional partner's tournaments are usually $60 per team. Non-boaters are expected to share in the daily fuel and launch fee costs for the boat during tournament days.
We award plaques to the top three finishers in each event and cash to the top five finishers. Both are awarded at our Awards Event in November. Cash awards for the non-points tournaments are awarded at the weigh-in on the day of the tournament. Club ranking for the season is based on accumulated points earned in the points tournaments. The top six members of the club who are also members of the NYS Bass Federation are eligible to represent the cub in the following year's NYS Bass Federation Club Team Event. (For 2014 the team will go to Waddington NY on the St. Lawrence River
Club Dues and other activities
Club dues are $70 per year, due at the December meeting. There is a $20.00 initiation fee upon election into the club and the new member is given a club hat. We encourage membership in the New York State Bass Club Federation which is an additional $20 due at the December meeting. Individuals are required to be current members of the Bass Anglers Sportsman Society (BASS.)
The club is also active in lobbying for conservation or regulatory issues affecting the sport of fishing through our own group and the New York State Bass Federation. This type of activity can include letter-writing or appearances before hearings on issues affecting our sport.
Albany Area Bassmasters
The Albany Area Bassmasters (AAB) was founded in March of 1975 with seven Charter members. None of these guys were die-hard fishermen at the time; the club was envisioned more as a social group with a fishing focal point. The competitiveness of the fishing has grown over the years and the Albany Area Bassmasters today are a very competitive Club that places great value on the camaraderie among our members. Along with the competitive spirit, the friendship and good will shared among our members has allowed the club to grow and flourish over the past 35 years. Members have come and gone, but you will find that anyone who has belonged to our club for more than a couple of seasons takes great pride in their membership and the accomplishments of their fellow club members. We have some members with adult sons in the club having been introduced to the sport through fishing as a youth. The Albany Area Bassmasters remain an active supporter of the New York State Bass Chapter Federation.