Mark your calendar: Navarre Beach Fishing Rodeo

For the anglers out there I have some exciting news. This year’s Navarre Beach Fishing Rodeo reeled in more than 400 pounds of fish!

That is a lot of fish, and the variety was pretty stellar including snapper, king mackerel, redfish, flounder, bonita and more.

Our junior anglers made a pretty skillful showing this year too.

In addition to the junior division competition, the Pat Huggins Take a Kid Fishing camp was also underway. This annual event teaches hundreds of children not only how to fish, but how to fish responsibly. This year we had 300 children at the camp, and all of them received their own rod and reel.

And everybody got onto the pier free of charge thanks to the rodeo coinciding with Free Fish Weekend each year.

This tournament is organized by the Navarre Beach Area Chamber Foundation highlights the abundance of fish that can be found in area waters and the different methods for catching them.

Anglers came by pier, by boat, by kayak and onshore to try their hand at landing the most massive fish.

There were 20 fish categories in all.

In addition to the open and junior divisions, there were several other divisions, including a kayak division where anglers on non-motorized vessels can compete in their own division for Spanish mackerel, King mackerel, snapper, flounder, redfish and trout.

There were also two “Slams” – where offshore division entrants competed for the largest Spanish mackerel, King mackerel and snapper. Inshore participants battled for the winning flounder, redfish and trout.

Non-native (and delicious) lionfish were also on the menu this year.

Tens of thousands of dollars in cash and prizes were handed out to the lucky winners of the tournament including yeti coolers and a kayak.

Winner or not, everybody walked away with a Mojo long sleeve fishing rodeo tee and captain bags filled with a variety of fishing treats.

Mark your calendar for next year’s rodeo Oct. 6 and 7, and come out to be part of the fun. Find out more at navarrefishingrodeo.com or call 850-939-1900.

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