35th Annual Thad Wester Fishing School

October 9th - 11th, 2020

Here is your chance to catch HUGE Red Drum.  

* 2020 Fishing School will be limited to 10 individuals/adult-child pairs due to safety precautions in place as a result of COVID-19*

Weekend Preview

Friday: Fishing School begins at 1:00 PM on the Bald Head Island Conservancy campus with instruction by Professors of the Piscatorial Arts and Fishing School Alumni. All classroom time will be held outdoors. Lessons will include the following topics:

Fishing Identification    Where to Fish on BHI    Hooks, Baits & Bait Rigging    Knots, Knot Tying & Leaders    Surf Rods & Reels    Weights, Lines & Casting    Releasing & Conservation    Fishing with Kids    Fishing Safety

Saturday: Fishing will begin at 7:45AM on the beach.  Lunch will be provided.   Saturday night will include a Seafood Gumbo take-out meal for all participants. Each participant may order up to one additional take-out meal for a non fishing school participant for $25 extra.

Sunday: The crew will again head out to the beach at 7:45AM.  Fishing School will conclude at 11:00AM.

Fishing School

October 9th - 11th, 2020 


Adults:  $275  |  Children (9-12):  $125*
Saturday Night Additional Take-Out Meal: $25

*Children must be accompanied by a paying adult. We strongly encourage child & adult pairs to register together. We have a 10 person/family unit limit for Fishing School this year as a result of COVID-19 and consider child & adult pairs as one single “family unit.”


"The teachers were great and I learned a lot even though I have fished all my life. The interns did a wonderful job.  What a great event and way to meet people!!" —Brady Anderson

"I have a ton of passion for the parent/child partner involvement in Thad Wester’s Fishing School.  I think that was part of his original intent...It’s so much more than just fishing.  What a gift that I’ve been a part of that."  - Steve Montgomery, Instructor

What you need for Fishing School:
  • North Carolina Fishing License
  • Rod & Reel 
  • Hands-free face covering
  • Terminal Tackle - several 2-hook bottom rigs, 2, or 3 oz. sinkers (or weights appropriate for your rod), 2/0 – 3/0  CircleHooks. (Note:  Some terminal tackle will be provided)
  • Knife & Pliers
  • Hat, Sunglasses, Sunscreen, and Insect Repellant
  • 5 or 6 Gallon Plastic Bucket & Lid, and/or Tackle Box if you prefer
  • Hand Towel
  • Light Rain Jacket & Sweatshirt
  • Pen, paper, and personal laptop or tablet for classroom sessions