Nearly 50 teams competed in Saturday's 14th annual Old Nick’s Redfish Roundup, hoping to win $10,000 in prizes. Hosted by Nick’s Seafood Restaurant and Treylermade Tournaments, the roundup donated $1,250 to the Choctawhatchee Basin Alliance to support waterways in Okaloosa and Walton counties.
Teams competed on a steamy Saturday, as bands of thunderstorms periodically disrupted the weigh-ins along the Choctawhatchee Bay. Fish were weighed live, in holding tanks before they could be safely released back into the estuary. Catch and release is such an important part of the tournament that, if anglers brought in a dead redfish, they were docked 1 pound during weigh-in.
Jack Foley and Brandon Jones came in first with a 12.91-pound redfish, winning $5,000, followed by Jack Matney and Fred Myers at 12.72 pounds and $2,000, Brandon Simon and Chris Pelly at 12.09 pounds and $1,500, Blake Nelson and Chris Brunsen at 11.89 pounds and $1,250, and Bill Oswell and Stan Standland at 11.64 pounds and $750. Case Woodard and Josh Landreth won the Zac Widdon Division with a 11.03-pound redfish.
Owner of Nick’s Seafood Restaurant and County Commissioner Trey Nick said he likes catch-and-release tournaments because it helps protect fisheries and gives insight to the health of the Choctawhatchee Bay.
“I look forward to the tournament every year because I feel good camaraderie with the fishermen," Nick said. "The local guides come together, the local fishermen come together, it builds good friendships and good conversations about the Bay. It makes for a good atmosphere along the Emerald Coast.”
For more than 20 years, CBA has promoted water stewardship within the Choctawhatchee watershed, growing the network of supporters who join in CBA’s mission to provide a future for these precious, natural resources.
“Anglers are such an important part of our community of water stewards,” said Alison McDowell, director of CBA. “The annual redfish roundup is a fun way to celebrate an amazing sport fish while investing in a healthy future for the Choctawhatchee Bay.”