The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is getting ready for the 75th annual Big Bass Rodeo and Fishtival in New Orleans City Park on Saturday, March 23. With a fishing category for every age and a family friendly Fishtival, there’s sure to be something for everyone! This year’s event will also include the Battle for the Bass student fishing tournament and Boats on the Bayou non-motorized tournament on Bayou St. John. If you wish to compete make sure to register by 5:00 p.m. today!

 The Big Bass Rodeo is a catch-and-release bank fishing tournament for anglers of all ages. For adults (ages 13 and over), the rodeo includes a competitive category for the heaviest bass. For junior anglers (ages 12 and under), the rodeo includes categories for heaviest bass and heaviest cichlid, bream, or perch. There is also a Cichlid and Bream Trim team fishing category (all ages) that awards a team of up to five anglers for the heaviest stringer of 15 bream, cichlids, or perch. Finally, for past winners of any individual bass category, there is the Champions Challenge (all ages) that awards the angler with the heaviest bass. 

The Battle for the Bass tournament encourages schools to participate in a fun and friendly competition. Students in grades 7 through 12 will represent their respective schools in teams of up to five anglers and will battle it out for the heaviest two-bass combined weight. The winning team will take home bragging rights for the year as well as a 3-foot trophy to display at their school. The first 100 students to register will receive a goodie bag.

Boats on the Bayou is open to anglers with kayaks and other non-motorized watercraft and offers two competitive categories. All participating anglers will be entered to win door prizes, courtesy of Massey’s Professional Outfitters. Massey’s will also be offering the opportunity for anglers to reserve and rent a free kayak. For the anglers that have always wanted to participate in Boats on the Bayou but didn’t have a kayak, now is your chance! Kayak rentals are limited so signup early to reserve yours today.

The Fishtival will take place from 9 a.m. to noon in the grandstand area in front of Popp’s Bandstand on Dreyfous Avenue in City Park. The event will feature music, food, and educational and hands-on activities. LDWF mascot Robbie the Redfish will be on hand for photo opportunities, and the 689 Swampers dance group will perform as everyone waits for scores to be tallied.

Online registration is open and will close at 5 p.m. today, March 21. For more information or to register online, visit Registration fees vary depending on division. Contact Danica Williams at with questions.

A recreational fishing license is required for participants 18 years and older.

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana’s abundant natural resources. For more information, visit us at