This year, a new opportunity to shoot popped up when I received an invite from James, a friend of a friend, who was coming from Mississippi to New Orleans “to kill prostate cancer.” Although I had no idea what he was calling about, it immediately got my attention considering prostate cancer is typically doing the killing, and I turn 50 this year. After a short introduction, I accepted the invite.
Just the mention of prostate cancer is enough to make any 50-year-old uncomfortable, but James made it worse when he said, “Meet us at Stella Plantation in Braithwaite on Saturday morning for “Gunning For A Cure.” I sure hope you can shoot 95/100 because Big Nate, Adam and I won the last competition we shot, and we would like to win Saturday.” Feeling like I had unknowingly walked into a prostate exam, I immediately got nervous thinking Saturday was not going to turn out as the self-proclaimed Rednecks had planned.
Once I got off the phone, I researched “Gunning for A Cure” learning it was a clay shooting competition benefiting Dr. Oliver Sartor’s Prostate Cancer Research with the objective of improving men’s health by discovering better treatment of prostate cancer. After looking at the Facebook page, I realized this was more of a social event so I began looking forward to being “tested” by James, Adam and Big Nate —until I learned more about Big Nate.
Big Nate is 6’3’’, 270 lbs and played college football in Mississippi. Most recently, Big Nate was featured in a Mississippi sporting magazine after he shot a 171 Class buck in 20 degree weather, then walked into a frozen pond in coveralls and knee boots, breaking ice all the way to retrieve his trophy buck. Obviously, Big Nate takes great pride in his ability to shoot and kill and does not give up easily. Big Nate is in his late 30’s so prostate cancer was not a major concern of his, but my gun was. He was obviously surprised that I showed up with a 22-year-old duck hunting gun with years of wear and tear including a missing bead on the barrel. Like a physician questioning a patient for the first time, Big Nate was cordial, but suspected a problem. However, after the first two stations, he started to understand why the gun has been around 22 years.
Stella Plantation did an incredible job designing the course which was shot by 60 4-man teams. Along with lunch, live music, kids games and door prizes, Dr. Sartor offered free PSA testing to all participants. The event was a huge success with over $500,000.00 raised since inception insuring that Dr. Sartor’s work “to kill prostate cancer”, as James put it, will continue to benefit us all.
The ironies of the day reminded me of “To Kill a Mockingbird.” Dr. Sartor, like Atticus Finch, has seen the evil side of prostate cancer. He has also found that human goodness prevails when given the opportunity, and his clay shoot is living proof. Big Nate, like Boo Radley, turned out to be a good-hearted person that wanted to help others, including Dr. Sartor. James, Adam, Big Nate and I, much like Scout, Jem and Dill, went thru the the beautiful oak trees of Stella Plantation where we found a wonderful cause, new friends, and a Second Place trophy to boot.
As we were leaving, Adam said, “Let’s take one more shot to kill prostate cancer – let’s get the PSA blood test done.” Not a fan of needles, I reluctantly joined them again, and, like many times earlier in the day, we went 4 for 4 with no signs of cancer. At least for now, we beat prostate cancer which was the biggest prize anyone could have won.
Congrats to you Dr. Sartor! Keep up the great work.
Everyone else, 50 years old or older, go GET TESTED!
Good, good news: fishing has turned on down here at Sweetwater! Water clarity is beautiful! The water is back to being normal. The wind is blowing out the right direction. So, basically what I am saying is the fishing is really worth the trip now! Where are the fish biting? Everywhere, no joke! Even Little Lake has gotten way better! Today, Capt. Jack went out on a charter with some guys from Mississippi and they had a blast! They caught 44 Specks, 13 Sheephead, 7 Reds, 6 Bass, 2 freshwater Catfish and had tons of throwbacks!!! Today was overall a spectacular day of fishing! It may not have been a limit but these guys acted like it was 10 limits! Some more great news, we have been having plenty, plenty beautiful live shrimp! We do have one room available for this weekend! We had one guy say he was staying but never called back with a deposit! So, it yours for the taking! Better call quick! We also have some lodging available for this upcoming week, so if you are interested give us a call at 504-342-2368. We can have you set up in one of our convenient rooms right across from the marina! Making the trip is always worth it, however now it is worth that much more; the fish are biting and the clarity of the water is amazing! So, the best thing you can do this weekend is load up your boat and tackle and get down here! We can’t wait to see you at Sweetwater Marina, the best marina around!
And don’t forget we are the second launch in Delacroix. We will help launch your boat, give as much advice on how to make your fishing trip the best it can possibly be, load you up with live bait and any tackle you desire, we provide our services for fish cleaning or you can use our fish cleaning tables for all the do-it-yourselfers, we can fuel you up with some of our non-ethanol gas and DO NOT FORGET to pick up a Sweetwater Shirt or Hoody. Our shirts and Hoody’s are $25 each, I would say that’s pretty cheap to represent the best marina around. We also have lodging and charters available (if you are interested, just give us a call at 504-342-2368). So head on over to Sweetwater Marina, and let the friendliest employees set you up on the right path for a spectacular fishing adventure!
LODGING INFORMATION: Our one bedroom lodges sleep up to 6 guest; it includes a galley kitchen (microwave, refrigerator, toaster oven, griddle, bbq pit, dining area, living room area (with 2 full sized sofas’, one being a sofa sleeper), free cable and Wi-Fi, and a full bathroom.
CHARTER INFORMATION: The charters run up to $750.00 for up to 4 anglers for a full day. On the charter, we provide equipment, bait, licenses, if necessary, fish cleaning and the packaging of the fish. The only thing you need to bring is your food, drinks, sunglasses, sunscreen and an empty ice chest to bring home your catch. Our captains specialize in in-shore fishing; usually, the catch consists mostly of Speckled Trout, Reds, and Bass.
For more information on lodging and charters or to make reservations, please call us at 504-342-2368. A small deposit will hold your reservation. So, come on down to the second launch in Delacroix, Sweetwater Marina, and let Capt. Jack, Mr. Ronnie, Tony, and Jesse put you in the water and put you on the fish. Anything we can do to help make your trip fun, successful and safe, just ask! We would love to see you at Sweetwater Marina, the marina that loves their customers!
GREAT CATCH ON FIRST DAY BACK OF 2017!
We had the pleasure to guide Jim & Josh from Dallas TX this morning.
Left out of Delta Marina in Empire, LA heading west of the Mississippi River with the weather absolutely beautiful. We made one stop and got a Speckled Trout bite going. It was steady so no way we were leaving to find something better in February.
Fishing live shrimp drifting over an oyster reef with an incoming tide Jim & Josh caught 50 fine Speckled Trout. The guys also caught 4 Black Drum on the reef.
We drifted a few banks for redfish after catching the trout and drum. Jim and Josh caught several redfish that were under the legal size limit. It was a great day on the water and a great catch on a February day.
It looks like it is going to be a great spring and summer.
OPEN DAYS TO FISH WITH US:
March 3, 7, 11, 15, 16, 19, 22 thru 25, 29, 30
April 4, 5, 12, 17 thru 20, 22, 30
May 14, 15
June 2, 8, 11, 17, 21, 22, 26, 27, 29
Capt. Jody Donewar
504 453 1519
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