Striper Day 2017

Now that we have new issue and videos laid out for our readers and show season is done, its time to fish. Thanks to ALL of you that stopped  at shows by our table and shook hands. Your words of encouragement and thoughts on what SJ means to you and how much you enjoy it, they mean a lot to us. After all, without you, there is no SJ. We try to give you the best content possible. There are two ways of doing this, mailing it in and give you generic gibberish you can pick up at any website. Or we can give you thoughts from people who are as passionate about surf fishing as you are. That is how we have been doing it and we’ll stick to that. Passion is what drives you to the beach, it should be no different when we are looking for best story ideas for SJ

Speaking of that, if anyone has a story idea or want to contribute to SJ as a featured writer or even columnist, feel free to email Dave Anderson at

There is bunker in a lot of places and NJ guys have been picking at schoolies for a while now. Not long from now , they will be spread along the coast. We have one more show to do, Patchogue Flea Market in April at St Joseph College but I think we are all “show’d out”.

Striper Day at Hofstra kicked off the season and Asbury closed it on in my mind. Yeah, they are few more shows you can attend but for a hardcore surfcaster the “meat” has been picked off the bone. Although to be fair to all our NE readers MassBass show is still to come.

Speaking of Striper Day, I think we documented well the struggle everyone, not just us, goes through on Long Island to find a venue suitable for a surf show or any show. No wonder flea markets are held in musky smelling, old halls, about as appealing as the coffee they serve at those places. The difference Striper Day and flea markets is that we feel that fisherman should be treated with some respect, with a classy venue, not WWII remnants. But regardless where we went, from catholic HS to indoor athletic fields, every college known to a man on LI, we ran into a wall at every place. Like no doubt everyone before us. So the decision had to be made, do we say screw this and let someone else deal with it? Or do we give our readers what they want , a classy show in the venue we know it works but we could use one twice as big? I though that having a big theater  was a huge part of what made Striper Day great. Someone asked me at NJ shows few weeks ago, “are seminars really that important, cant you just do a show without them”

To me personally, seminars are integral part of any good surf show, probably (to me) more important than any single vendor or even a group of vendors. I think a show without a single rod manufacturer is still a fine show. Show without a seminar is..well, i don’t know what it is

Zeno-Hromin-(19)The Striper Day 2017 will be held once again at Hofstra U. What I want from you today is some intelligent advice on how to make it better. Its no secret that everyone wants come in the morning but that cant happen.We will reduce the # of vendors to make little more room for attendees to browse. That is given. But the truth is (and I can speak from personal preferences and experience) everyone wants to come to any show in the morning. That is what most shows look like ghost town in the afternoon.

We were told to split a show in two days ( this will never happen with surf vendors for MANY reasons,), we were told to do fri night/sat show (again, same issues). Many plug builders sell out in hours, never mind two days. Plus added cost of hotel and food , its not economical for small business which most surf fishing vendors are.

Some suggested breaking show into 2 session, morning and afternoon. It sounds good in theory but then you have to chase everyone out and the what, you are going to charge a guy again for  the afternoon session? That is just silly in my book.

Some type of advance ticket sales or reservation is definitely something we are considering. As much as everyone wants to come first thing in the morning and split, we cant accommodate them all if we wanted to. So some type of advance sales only for first few hours might be in the  cards. Only those with tickets can be admitted for first few hours? And then general admission after 10 or something? It could work. The giveaways would probably start with general admission later in the morning?

Will there will be a  line at 10? Probably. Ever been to a surf fishing show where there is no line to get in? Do you want to go to the show where no one shows up?

I didn’t think so

In any event…..we are also strongly considering allowing SJ subscribers get a first shot at advance sales if we decided to go that route. I think that is only fair.

There will be some new vendors this year too, Arsenal Lures, Tom Lynch Photography, Luna Custom Lures and some others.P1010241-Edit-2

25 comments on “Striper Day 2017

  1. Blackdogfish

    Zeno, Tommy, Dave and crew…
    Although family events precluded me from attending the first Striper Day, I really wanted to. I remember Zeno’s post well before the show was official discussing all the problems with possible venues…and despite all, you seem to have pulled together a great show. I know it was stressy. I know you were considering not doing it again. I applaud your decision to keep it going.

    My comments:
    Having the speakers and a good venue for that is REAL important. The caliber of speakers is the main draw for a show for me. I agree with Z.

    Seems that big problems with early crowding are plug buyers. Personally if I got a few super strikes and one or two extra plugs, I could care less about all the collectors and the kids with way too much money to spend. And I hate that these builders sell great stuff for reasonable prices and these kids just buy it up to sell it for twice as much. they ought to limit one per customer…but that’s another rant.
    What if you had plug sellers go live after lunch? That would certainly mean you get a big population bump there. Maybe that’s when the speakers go…folks that have been thru the show get some lunch and the speakers are the main draw for the afternoon. And the kids can buy hundreds of plugs while the speakers are going.

    Certainly advance sales make sense for two reasons. 1…It’s way better for your cash flow 2. The guys that believe in SJ and step up with their fee get rewarded by early admission. 3. Once again, you’re spacing out the bursts of guests. I think you’re on target with that. Ticket holders get in one or two hours in advance. And maybe a special raffle for ticket holders.

    You guys rock. I’m putting the date in my calendar right now. In the meantime, today I tied up some riggies and I’m dying to get in the surf. Have a great season!

  2. Joe GaNun

    I’ll be coming after 11 AM next year, but I recognize that a late show does not work for everyone.
    Possibly you could move the plug builders out into the adjacent hallways to clear up the initial crush. Or maybe start them an hour after the show opens ?
    I suggested somewhere else that going forward if the space has to grow then possibly a few large tents with blown in heat would cover it. They could be erected on tarmacs, ballfields etc. For large buildings, possibly an air port hangar. that bring you back to stinker coffee, maybe, but they are usually giant facilities.
    Long Island is home to Republic, Floyd Bennett, etc.
    Looking forward to the 2017 show at Hofstra.

    1. zhromin Post author

      not against the tent but would HATE to lose a theater ..that to me is a HUGE part of any show, being able to have a pro audio and visual…but as we all know , LI is fucked up

  3. BigFishLarry

    Even with advanced ticket sales for early morning entry, plug fanatics still have the need to be “FIRST IN LINE”. Thats a tough puzzle to solve “Z” and I am not sure there is a solution to the dilemma?

    1. zhromin Post author

      the early guys will be early no matter what, its not something I am looking to change or discourage, just need to control crowd a little better

  4. Ron

    I showed up this year around noon with my 4 year old son and we both had a blast, I cant wait till next year! That said to ease the crowds up a bit how about making the morning entry fee a few dollars more and the afternoon a few less to spread the crowd out as well as have some door prize’s afternoon only. The only other suggestion is that since space is such a premium careful consideration of vendor placement may help clear up some of the crowded spots and ease traffic flow on the show room floor.

    1. zhromin Post author

      all of that is a go
      less vendors and less tables per vendor
      we secured about a LOT of stuff to be given away but that will only be in afternoon
      not sure about entry fee higher in morning, not feeling that right now. I know we can but that does not mean we should

    1. zhromin Post author

      difficult. Some builders sell out in an hour, what are they going to do for two days?
      But i still think its a good idea, and probably something whose time will come in future.

  5. bucktail 1169

    Just my opinion here , the seminars are the best part of the show . I like shopping the vendors and getting to pick the brains of all the reps and check out new gear and stuff , but the info passed along from the guest speakers is more valuable then a custom plug . Plus seeing the seminars in a theater was great .

    1. zhromin Post author

      agree…to me without a seminars and I mean quality from speaker to venue, its just a room with bunch of stuff…a flea market

  6. Johnp

    Almost feels like there are two different shows Z. One is the plug ho crowd. They are the early birds who want to buy custom wooden lures and (some at least) sell them later on PlugHub. Then you’ve got the show crowd. You good separate them and let the plug hos in early for that part. Heck some of them sell out in an hour or two anyway. By 10 those tables are empty.

  7. keith bolen

    why don’t you guys see if you can take over that common space where we all lined up to get in. when i left the show it was empty guys would just have to wait outside and you can fit a lot of vendors in that space if you clear out the table and chairs.

  8. Mimo Emo

    Difficult situation to manage. However, the one idea you put forward in your post – to give SJ subscribers priority entry/ right of first entry – maybe makes the most sense. And even though I am not a subscriber (ashamed to admit that, but there you have it) I think it is a fair way to manage it.

    So maybe you allow SJ subscribers to purchase preferred entry admission tickets in advance. And those tickets allow them to enter the venue one hour before general admission ticket holders.

    That way, you provide your subscribers with an opportunity to purchase rare plugs at the price set by the makers. Instead of having to go to resellers.

    And if the plug collectors decide that they want to get in first so badly that they all get a SJ subscription, if they are not already, then so be it. It will help to drive revenue growth for the publication. Of course, a secondary market in preferred entry admission tickets might develop. No idea what to do about that.

    And if there are subscribers that don’t care about getting there early, well, then they don’t have to. I don’t know. It seems you could come up with a win-win situation here this way. IMHO.

    1. zhromin Post author

      oh, I can just about guarantee that only SJ subscribers will be able to purchase advance tickets for the first few hours. That is a given, after all this is a show for them

  9. Mark

    Just a thought:

    Plug builders bring a full assortment of “samples”. Customers come all throughout the day and place orders. The builders mail out the plugs after the show. Inevitably more orders will come then they have plugs. So they build more and ship once restocked.

    Everybody then gets nice plugs without a rush to the tables. Builders make more money overall. Massive lines are reduced and folks come all throughout the day.

    Could be a terrible idea. Or maybe some variant of this idea fits the bill…

    1. zhromin Post author

      probably most guys would have a change of heart after going home and realizing they just spent a mortgage on plugs!!!…lol

  10. TonyF

    I go to Surf Day strictly for the seminars and I will peruse the plug builders in between lectures and usually get to pick up a lure or two. To me that’s a perfect way to spend a winter day. I used to go early and wait on line with the plug buyers but one year I got caught in traffic and arrived late only to find no line I walked right in. So now I don’t worry about getting there early and I try and time myself behind the crush of early birds and leave just enough time to get in before the lectures I’m interested in. Maybe you could have the lectures start a little late so there could be a stagger between the early birders and others who just want to hear the lecture. Glad your giving it another go, thanks Z.

  11. unkaharry

    I think everyone will agree that the first STRIPER DAY was a total success. You and your team put together a show that no one will forget and no one will want to miss. Thank You. But I don’t think you would lose one follower if you didn’t change a thing. The location was great ,venders great,speakers great,and the crowd was great ! Anyone that doesn’t want to fight the crowd will come a little later.plug whores will buy a subscription just to get in the door early,but that will help bankroll the show. I have no dought that you will find some way to make STRIPER DAY 2017 bigger and better, thats a given, but remember you can please some of the people some of the time, but you can’t please all of the people all of the time! Good luck this season

  12. Csr

    Z, Striper day was awesome. So much great talent in one place. Kudos for pulling it off.

    Lots of great suggestions here. Letting subscribers get early entry is good, but I’m not sure it would solve the problem. It would increase subscriptions though.

    I’d say put all of the plug builders along the back wall of the main room. Hopefully it would confine a lot of the traffic there.

    And having the theatre is great, definitely don’t give that up. God willing, I’ll be there again next year.


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