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The American Shrimp Contest

USA Breeder Showcase

The American Shrimp Contest will take place for the second time, as a part of the Aquashella-Chicago Aquarium Festival. This event will be held at the White Eagle Convention Center 6839 N Milwaukee Ave, Niles, IL 60714 on September 28th-29th, 2019. The idea behind this contest, is to give an opportunity for you and your neighbor to compete without the pressure of competing against the best from other countries. This is a condensed version of the International contest held yearly, as we wanted to stay with a simpler format, easy to understand categories, and a less intimidating atmosphere. This is also a great way to prepare to compete against the best in the Annual International Contest.

Registration, Fees, Acceptance and Deadlines 

US shrimp hobbyist breeders are eligible to participate with their own home bred shrimp groups, that match with the listed categories. By completing registration, the participant affirms that the shrimp they show are shrimp that they have bred and raised themselves. In the case of reasonable doubt, the participant in question is disqualified. In this case, the registration fees are not refunded.

Entry Fee  

▪ $25.00 per group

The entry fee will be paid during registration. There is no information available about other entries during registration.

* Each participant may enter a maximum of 2 sets of groups per category.

With paid registration, each individual participant will receive a ticket for both days of the show. This is a maximum of 1 ticket per verified name and is nontransferable.

You may register at www.Aquashella.com  Registration list is ONLY made available to the organizing committee. 


One group of shrimp consists of between 3 and 5 shrimp of both sexes. If there are more than 3 shrimp in a group, the best 3 shrimp are judged, but, if you send in more than 5 shrimp, the excess shrimp will not be put into the contest aquariums. A minimum size of 1.8 cm for the shrimp is required. Shrimp with a visible parasite infestation are disqualified, this will be determined by the Lead Judge. If berried shrimp are entered that release their offspring during the contest, the participant has no right to claim the offspring after the event.


Registration must be completed via the website by September 18, 2019, unless otherwise indicated.

A maximum of 50 show tanks are made available for this contest. Entries are accepted in their order of arrival. Although the registration period ends on September 18, 2019, registration may be terminated ahead of this date if the maximum number of show group entries is reached earlier.



Each participant is responsible for arranging the retrieval of their shrimp groups, or they can be donated to the contest. Any donated groups will become property of the organizing committee. Those that are not to be donated, must be collected in person on Sunday beginning at 6pm. Any person you select, may also collect the shrimps upon production of your authorization plus a copy of the selected individual’s photo ID, if necessary. Any shrimps that are not collected will automatically become property of the committee. No reimbursement of the entry fee is possible. For organizational reasons, it is not possible to send the shrimps back to their owners by mail.


Packaging, Allocation of Contest Tanks, & Delivery and Contact Info

We hope that all of our contestants will join us for the show, as there is so much more going on than our contest. This might not be possible for everyone, so we will accept shipped shrimp as well. Contestants must ensure adequate and proper packaging of shrimps with each show group entry packed separately in transport bags. The transport bag must be marked with the following details: category, genus and, if applicable, the variant. Please ensure these details are clearly legible and applied with a waterproof marker. Do not include any name information written on the transport bags. Write your name and address only on the package exterior or include a letter with your name and address inside your package.

Shipments will be accepted at the following address beginning Wed September 25th, 2019:

Double Tree Skokie

ATTN: Therese Neal or Rob Lupton

The American Shrimp Contest

9599 Skokie Blvd

Skokie, IL 60077


Verification is done with each registered group to ensure shrimps belong to the relevant group. Should problems such as missing or wrong labeling arise and no correct allocation is possible, the shrimps will be displayed in separate tanks outside of the contest floor with no possibility of being judged.

Deliveries handed to team members in person must do so between 8:00am-6:00pm on Thursday and Friday September 26 & 27, 2019.  We cannot guarantee deliveries after this deadline will be able to be judged and may be placed in separate tanks outside of the contest floor, if not. 

Should you wish to deliver your show group entry in person, please make sure the transport bag is handed to one of the organizing members ONLY.


Show Tank Specification and Tagging 

The water parameters will be maintained within acceptable limits for the different categories.

Substrate:      A suitable substrate will be used for every category.

Lighting:        Individual/or strip light integrated into the cover or mounted above the cover panel.

Filter:             Air Driven sponge filter or motor filter.                              

Water Quality:    RO water will be used with a PH approaching neutral.

The tanks will be numbered/tagged consecutively. Following judging, each tank will be labeled with the category, the breeder’s name and the number of points awarded for the placement.


Judges, Procedure and Entry Groups

The Judges are appointed by the organizing committee and are not permitted to enter into the contest. This rule also applies to their family members and the organizing committee.


A show group consists of 3 to 5 shrimps to allow for an assessment of the standard of the breeding accomplished. The best three invertebrates in a show group are compared with each other by the judges with the help of a points system. 

The assessment guidelines and allocation of points take the characteristics of the 5 different groups into account.               

Each category will be assessed by two judges. Each of the two judges will award their own points. The points are then added together and divided by two.

Once the points have been awarded, if there is a tie (in the first three places) in one category, the Lead Judge will determine the order of the places with the same total points.

At around 12 pm on Sunday, September 29th, the winners of the different categories will be announced in the exhibition area. The overall winner of the contest will also be announced, and a monetary prize of $500 will be awarded.



Official photographs will be taken of the show groups. The organizers will hold the copyright to these photos, which will be made available for publishing in magazines, etc. Visitors may take photos of all the invertebrates on display. No manipulation with fingers, sticks or similar objects is permitted in the tanks. Only the official photographers appointed by the organizing committee may be permitted some careful manipulation by means of clean wooden skewers. The team members are obligated to prevent any manipulation by visitors.


Exclusion of Liability

Aquashella, The Grand Place at Fair Park, contest sponsors, the organizing committee and team members are not responsible for any loss, illness or failure of shrimp during transportation or during the exhibition period. A complete list of losses will be tracked each day and can be presented if requested.


Instructions for Contestants:

  • Upon arrival, contestants will need to check in at the Will Call Counter to receive their show pass in order to access the show floor.  

  • Shrimp contest tanks must be ready by 6pm Friday September 29th.  

  • Winners will be announced on Sunday around 2pm and prizes distributed.  

  • Please plan accordingly.


If you have any questions, please e-mail Therese Neal @ therese.lyons@gmail.com


We Look Forward To Seeing You!