GlassCages , CaribSea, and Fishy Business present an Aquascaping Contest like no other.

Join 10 competitors as they intensely compete for prizes and recognition in a reality-style timed aquascaping contest. Competitors will choose from a selection of dry goods and a custom tank to design their creation over 2 hours. 

Contestants will be evaluated on 

Artistic Impression (1. Composition / 2. Layout / 3. Creativity)
Use of Hardscape Materials (1. Driftwood/ 2. Rocks/ 3 . Sand etc)

Contestants will be able to compete Saturday with awards given out Sunday. 

Follow along online and at the show as the event is live-streamed. Look for our ad in Amazonas Magazine!

Meet Our Panel of Judges

Jen Williams


David Bono

Jack McCarley

Lucas Bretz

Rules and Regulations

Each contestant is afforded (1) Entry. There are no teams and contestants must participate Solo.

The Entry Fee is $50 Dollars and comes with (1) General 2-Day Admission to The Aquatic Expo.

Entry Fees are non-refundable for any reason at any time. Forfeited entry fees will go towards the prize packages for winners. If a contestant chooses not to compete their entry fee will be converted to a 2-Day Event Ticket.

Registration must be completed by the deadline (June 5th 2023).

Participants must be 18 or older to compete.

Participants must be present to compete and win.
Awards will be presented on Day 2 of the Event.

This event is primarily a friendly way for hobbyists to share their aquascaping efforts with each other, and to learn better techniques through the display and evaluation of those efforts. The contest will also allow hobbyists to compete for awards. The event is open to all hobbyists, regardless of age, national origin or degree of experience in the hobby.

Aquascapers are forbidden to ask advice or show aquascape photos to current contest judges. The first offense will result in a warning, and the second offense can result in disqualification of the aquascape.

Continued attempts to contact the judges will be considered an attempt to influence the aquascape’s score and will result in banning the aquascaper from the contest.

Aquascapers are asked to not include personal identifying information in the aquascape information. This includes the title, descriptive text, and photographs. The contest committee reserves the right to remove such identifying information.

Competitors are now allowed to alter their entries once the judging period has started.

Judging will be conducted with each aquascape identified only by number; i.e. the judges will not be expected to know the identity of the person whose aquascape they are considering, nor will they base their score on the person creating in any way, only the creation.. Judges do not communicate with each other when scoring each aquascape.

Awards (1st, 2nd, and 3rd place) will be given to the three highest-placed aquascapes.  

1st Place – First-place contestants will be awarded their entry fee doubled in return, a $100 Cash Prize.  They may also keep their creation.  A trophy will be awarded during the Awards Ceremony on stage Sunday as well, please plan to attend!  

2nd Place – Second-place contestants may also keep their creations. A trophy will be awarded during the Awards Ceremony on stage Sunday as well, please plan to attend!  

3rd Place – A trophy will be awarded during the Awards Ceremony on stage Sunday as well, please plan to attend!  

After the winners are tabulated, the judges will also choose, by vote, a Best of Show Aquascape, and a Most Innovative Aquascape. They will communicate with each other about this decision for these awards ONLY.

Judges are asked to provide feedback on the qualities of each aquascape in the contest. These comments will be placed on the website associated with the appropriate aquascapes. 

The decisions of the judges are final.

Basic Criteria

 Artistic Impression

A. Composition/Layout

Judges look for overall balance and harmony in a tank. Visual balance is secured by use of hardscape materials, all arranged in a harmonious way, avoiding space gaps, distracting shadows or a feeling of confinement.

B. Creativity

This is the part that sets your tank apart from the crowd. Judges are usually looking for creative layout, innovative use of hardscape and other visual elements, as well as special finishing techniques for the final photo (eg. ingenious lighting effects).


The Provided tanks will be custom rimless glass tanks measuring

24 X 12 X 16 

Aquascape Materials

800 LBS of Assorted Sand
600 LB of Seriyu, Dragonstone, & Assorted Rocks
Variety of Shapes and Sizes of Driftwood
Aquascaping Glue

*Aquascape materials are on a first come first served basis. All aquascape materials are for community use and unused pieces must be returned to the common pile. Competitors are not allowed to alter or damage materials unless they are being used in the creation of their hardscape.  Points will be deducted for wasteful misuse of materials to hinder other competitors.


Competitors must provide their own specialty Tools.  The use of power tools are prohibited.

Competitors must use the provided aquascape materials to create their aquascape and outside materials are prohibited.

Competitors can bring their own wires, glues, brushes, and blocking materials.

Silent Auction and/or Raffle

Once the competition is over a silent auction will be held to award the remaining creations to the attendees. 

Some tanks may be raffled off to TAE Attendees.

(Subject to Change)

By participating every competitor agrees to the following.

Their works will be photographed and evaluated. Images and Media can and will be used to promote the event.

Video and Images captured by TAE are the property of TAE and can be used in any scenario to promote the competition or future competitions

A competitor’s likeness and the first name followed by the last initial will be used to promote the event and may appear in promotional media and on the website.

During the competition, the event may be live-streamed, and authorized members of the TAE media staff may interview competitors.

TAE, all contest sponsors, and the organizing committee are not responsible for any loss, illness, or failure of tanks during transportation or during the exhibition period.