StriperFest hopes to hook big help for the environment

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) – The Cape Fear River Watch is holding its biggest event of the year next weekend. StriperFest celebrates the resurgence of the striped bass, commonly known as a stripera famous migratory fish of the Cape Fear.

The event is a fundraiser to help protect the area’s fish population.

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Friday will feature an auction and banquet. On Saturday, guests can watch boats take off in a one-of-a-kind tag-and-release striped bass fishing tournament. The tournament will then be followed by a free, family-friendly StriperFest Education Day.

Cape Fear Riverkeeper Kemp Burdette says the event helps raise money to protect local wildlife.

“We’ve already built a fish passage at lock and damn #1. The fish passage is working,” Kemp said. “Fish are moving over that fish passage. We know it’s a solution that works.”

“What we’re trying to do is push for fish passage at lock and dam number 2 and lock and dam number 3,” Kemp said, “and once those are in place, it will allow fish to swim all the way up to their traditional spawning ground and rebuild their population.”

StriperFest will be at the Coastline Convention Center, starting with the auction and banquet Friday.

A rundown of all the activities can be found here, and banquet tickets can be purchased here.