The Wild Side: New boss means not much will change

Hope you read front-page headlines Wednesday and Thursday. If you did, you know we have a new
publisher.

John Georges calls New Orleans home and wants to expand The Advocate’s presence in the Crescent City.

Just want to let you know he also wants us to maintain, if possible deepen, the footprint The Advocate has across the Baton Rouge area’s landscape.

At the same time, it’s tough to watch the former publishers go. The Manships were good owners. There have been times Advocate Outdoors writers have blistered folks the Manships knew, probably some friends, since working for them 40 years ago, and never knew them to call former Advocate Outdoors writer Mike Cook nor I on the
carpet for our words.

I know that there were times when they could have questioned our positions on topics ranging from the Atchafalaya Basin to gill nets to the current fights with federal managers over recreational fishing.

Knowing I can speak for Mike, God rest his soul, that support was appreciated.

What does this mean for our more than loyal outdoors readers isn’t all that clear but will be soon.

From the first meetings, you should expect few changes: But know what? There are no such things today as a “New Orleans place” or a “Baton Rouge spot.” Today, those have become favorite places for Baton Rouge area fishermen, too. It’s amazing that, in the 22 years on this job, more and more Capital City folks have come to appreciate the trout, redfish, flounder, drum and largemouth bass action in and around Lake Pontchartrain, Lake Borgne, Breton Sound, Delacroix, Hopedale, Shell Beach and Venice.

Heck, when I started working for the now-defunct State-Times, it was equally as amazing how few fishermen knew where Venice was, nor had ever come to appreciate fishing in places like Golden Meadow and Cocodrie, even The Fourchon. Folks here knew about the offshore from Grand Isle and Fourchon but never knew the marshes afforded them first-rate catches.

That’s not the case now, and from what we know about Mr. Georges and his team, we’re going to get complaints from Baton Rouge and New Orleans readers when we don’t report on specific locations throughout south Louisiana.

So talking about the May 17-18, seventh annual Italian-American Fishing Rodeo at Breton Sound Marina in Hopedale is routine here.

Two weeks after that, it’s the May 31-June 1 16th annual Save Our Lake & Coast Fishing Rodeo at the Kenner Boat Launch at the end of Williams Boulevard. It’s the focal point of the annual Back to the Beach Festival.

Baton Rouge area folks have found these two events in recent years, and that’s why Mr. Georges’ presence should be good for all readers, more importantly more fishermen. Heck, we’re fishing their places, and they’re fishing our places. We’ve been doing it for a long time.