Isla Mock, left, won the ice chest in the raffle, which her friend Lily Hicks helped her carry. [ Wendy Woodrick ]
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Nearly 300 anglers compete in Bayou Bash

A record 295 participants competed in the annual Bayou Bash in Port St. Joe on Saturday, May 4, as over 400 pounds of trout, redfish, and flounder were caught in the one-day tournament and weighed at Salinas Park on Cape San Blas.

Hundreds turned out as the anglers brought in their catches. The event included raffle prizes, live music, food and drink, games for the kids, the popular mullet toss, T-shirts, swag, and other freebies.

The adult division, ages 13 and up, had 191 men and 53 women. Prizes for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places were $600, $400 and $200, respectively. 

Winner of the Inshore Slam, which is when an angler catches a redfish, speckled trout, and flounder in a single outing, was awarded $1,000. 

In the Youth Division, 51 kids under age 13 competed, with the first, second and third place winners were awarded $200, $100, and $50, respectively. The Inshore Slam winner received $500. 

Participants found out Friday the tournament’s Mystery Fish was the ladyfish, with a bag limit of three. The adult winner won $500, the youth winner took home $250. 

The roots of the Bayou Bash began in the late 1990s when brothers Mark and Clint Moore bet each other $20 on who would catch the largest trout. Their friendly wager grew over the years as friends and family joined in the competition.

In 2018, the Swivel Sisters began organizing the Bayou Bash. “In 2018 while working in the tackle industry, I saw a need for women’s education in the sport of fishing and so Swivel Sisters was born,” said Kendra McDaniel, president and founder. “Through this amazing organization, I strive to connect women to water and help them discover their own independence and passion for nature.”

McDaniel teaches weekly classes on Tuesdays where ladies learn water-related activities, including how to back up your boat trailer or how to catch a pompano. Ladies can also get their boater’s safety certification.

Proceeds from the Bash go toward a $4,000 scholarship awarded to a local senior or to a youth who has participated in a Bayou Bash previously. This year’s recipient is Port St. Joe High School senior Samantha Childers.

“I am so thankful to the Swivel Sisters for giving me the scholarship,” she said. “It will help make the financial burden of going to college a lot easier. I hope to return to Gulf County one day as a teacher and share my love for the beach and outdoors with my students.”

Visit for more information on the Swivel Sisters. Their next tournament, the Bag Lady Tournament, is scheduled for the first weekend in October.

Meet the Editor

David Adlerstein, The Apalachicola Times’ digital editor, started with the news outlet in January 2002 as a reporter.

Prior to then, David Adlerstein began as a newspaperman with a small Boston weekly, after graduating magna cum laude from Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts. He later edited the weekly Bellville Times, and as business reporter for the daily Marion Star, both not far from his hometown of Columbus, Ohio.

In 1995, he moved to South Florida, and worked as a business reporter and editor of Medical Business newspaper. In Jan. 2002, he began with the Apalachicola Times, first as reporter and later as editor, and in Oct. 2020, also began editing the Port St. Joe Star.

Wendy Weitzel The Star Digital Editor

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