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How do fishing tournaments boost Lake Greenwood’s economy?

Three sports fishermen on a power boat, proudly show their catch of fish near Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.

The waters of South Carolina are known for being great fishing spots. It’s no wonder that fishing is a popular recreational activity here. Fishing tournaments happen on a regular basis here for the more competitive anglers. Lake Greenwood, in particular, plays host to several fishing tournaments each year.

Read on to know more about fishing in Lake Greenwood and its impact on the community.

Fishing in Lake Greenwood

A wide variety of freshwater fish abound in South Carolina’s Lake Greenwood, including crappie, bass, bream, perch, catfish, and stripers. You can check other fishes endemic to Lake Greenwood here. But the most common catches in this lake are channel and flathead catfish.

In its effort to keep its marine population abundant and healthy, the Palmetto State requires a fishing license from those who want to take to South Carolina’s waters for recreational or competitive fishing.

Top fishing tournaments in Lake Greenwood

Lake Greenwood is no stranger to hosting fishing tournaments. The region has organized several big and small fishing competitions that draw in residents and visitors of all ages. And they are usually supported by various fishing organizations, tournament planners, and local anglers.

During the fishing season, several major fishing tournaments are held every month. Among the most popular ones are:

  • Crappie Masters –A two-day fishing competition held every March. Also known as the Crappie Masters’ South Carolina State Championship, this is one of the largest fishing tournaments hosted by Lake Greenwood, with more than 30 participating boats.
  • Anglers for Athletes Spring Classic – A bass fishing tournament fundraiser for the Special Olympics of South Carolina. Held every April, teams are required to catch largemouth and spotted bass for a grand total prize of $2,000.
  • Ram American Fishing Tour – Presented by American Bass Anglers, participants who win this qualifier tournament advance to the year-end championships.
  • American Fishing Tour Division 96 Bring-A-Youth Tournament – An annual fishing competition that invites young anglers to try their hand at casting a line.
  • Bass Pro Shops Fishing Tour D96 Tournament – Participants are invited to fish for the most and best bass. Prizes include cash, gift certificates, and discount coupons.

Lake Greenwood also has smaller, unofficial fishing tournaments each weekend. At times, the lake community would host various benefit fishing tournaments to raise funds for its less fortunate residents.

Impact on local economy

Fishing tournaments in Lake Greenwood have contributed greatly to the area’s local economy. The influx of visitors to communities surrounding the lake has given a boost to the hotels, restaurants, shops, and gas stations situated there. Thus, it is safe to say that the fishing scene there is literally what keeps it afloat.

Kelly McWhorter, executive director of Greenwood Regional Visitors Tourism, noted that these Lake Greenwood tournaments manage to bring in around $500,000 to $600,000 each year. The recent Crappie Masters tournament alone has brought in $269,500.

It is also common for South Carolinians themselves to be engaged in recreational fishing. A report by the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources discloses that 1/3 of the local population has fishing as their favorite outdoor activity.

Plans for future fishing tournaments

McWhorter sees the potential of having more fishing tournaments in Lake Greenwood in the future. She continues to attend various trade shows to meet with tournament planners.

However, the challenge is that the community still doesn’t have enough space to accommodate a higher number of boats. To address this, the county is in the initial stages of increasing the number of Lake Greenwood boat ramps and parking spaces. Once the project is complete, communities in the area will be able to host tournaments to be participated in by around 100 to 200 boats.

About Lake Greenwood

Lake Greenwood is a beautiful natural landmark in South Carolina. The Lake Greenwood State Park, located on 302 State Park Road 96 near the towns of Greenwood and Ninety Six, can be found along the banks of this magnificent lake. The lake itself has an estimated 11,000 acres of water and 212 miles of shoreline, making it the perfect spot for outdoor recreational activities such as fishing, boating, hiking, swimming, camping, and many more.

Lake Greenwood and its namesake state park are managed by the Greenwood County Lake Management Department and the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources, which protect the fishery resources.

If you’re looking for year-round fishing, beautiful lakefront homes, and a laid-back lifestyle, then living in Lake Greenwood is a great option for you. Learn more about Lake Greenwood and its stunning properties by getting in touch with The Wiley Team. Call us today at 864.993.8153 or send us an email here.