Lindsey shares her experience at one of her favorite tournaments to fish. She also
shares some exciting news that not many 16-year-old kids get to experience.
Big Mama Memories
I saw my rod tip dip and as I went to grab it, my Dad also yelled, “Fish on.”
As I reeled in my fish, my Mom shouted, “It’s a bass.”
“No, I think it’s a crappie,” said my sister, Hailey.
But during the frenzy, we all turned to see Dad actually had two huge fish on at the same time. I quickly grabbed the net and dipped up one of the biggest crappie I have seen in a while. On Dad’s second hook thrashed an Aplodinotus Grunniens, commonly known as a freshwater drum.
Amazingly we managed to get all three big fish in the boat. Hailey grabbed Dad’s drum and quickly returned it to the water. Then she puts Dad’s big crappie on the digital scale and for the moment of truth, Dad’s big crappie weighed in at 2.09 lbs. Mine wasn’t too far behind at 1.79 lbs.
Big crappie were exactly what we needed fishing the 21st annual Big Mama Crappie/Bass Tournament held annually on Lake Washington in Mississippi. The money raised at this tournament goes towards Camp Looking Glass, a camp for children and adults with disabilities.
A few days before, after a grueling seven-hour drive, we arrived at the Silver Stone Lake house. We decided to arrive a day early to hopefully scout out some big crappie hideouts. But first, after winning the recent Teen Miss Missouri Outdoors competition, I got to shoot a video for the Delta News TV inviting everyone to the Big Mama Tournament.
The next morning at 5 am I heard my Mom and Dad yelling, “Up and at ‘em!”
We got lucky and beat all the other boats to check in at the Southern Star RV Park & Cabins. We were reminded we had to stop fishing at 1:00 p.m. and had to be in the weigh in line by 1:30 to weigh in our fish, or be disqualified. We got the boat into the water just a bit later than we wanted, but we weren’t worried since we already knew where the good-sized fish were hiding.
As usual during tournaments, time is up way too soon. Dad says we must go, and I get everything ready so we could take off. Then the worst possible thing happened – our boat wouldn’t start. Dad turned the ignition time after time and finally, we breathed a sigh of relief as the engine fired up and we took off. We hustled to load the boat to drive back to the weigh-in with only 15 minutes left. As we pulled in, Dad and I leapt from the truck and got in line with our fish at exactly 1:30.
We laughed and giggled at what a close call it was as Mom parked the truck. The weigh-in was quite a party with live music, great food, and even a live auction. We also caught up with some old friends we hadn’t seen since last year and made some new friends.
Everyone had eaten, the auction was over, and it was time for the moment we had all been waiting for. I donned my Teen Miss Missouri Outdoors sash as Mike Jones had me help pass out awards. I was proud to end up in second place in the youth division. Mom and Dad also placed second in the Couple’s Adult “no-sonar” division.
I have fished this tournament for the past three years and enjoy it more and more each time. Before beginning the long drive back to Missouri, we stopped for a visit to the Mississippi Wildlife Heritage Museum in Leland, Mississippi. We also detoured a bit so we could stop to see my name on the Legends Wall of Fame as the “Up-and-Coming Outdoor Promoter of the Year.” After a grand tour of the museum, we pointed our truck toward home.
It was a hectic, exciting whirlwind of activity – placing in the tournament, appearing on the Delta TV News, and in the newspaper. Those things are all incredible and I am beyond grateful and thank the good Lord each day.
Memories were made, laughs were shared, and it was time well spent. But the most important part is we ended up raising $2,800 for Camp Looking Glass.
Lindsey Lucas, 16, is obsessed with all things outdoors. She dreams of becoming an accomplished outdoor media provider and influencer. She hopes the tips and experiences she shares will prove inspirational for other young men and women in her Gen Z age group.