Big Bass Rodeo and Fishtival at New Orleans City Park

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is getting ready for the 71st annual Big Bass Rodeo and Fishtival in New Orleans City Park on Saturday, March 24. 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 include the Battle for the Bass student fishing tournament and Boats on the Bayou non-motorized tournament on Bayou St. John.

The Big Bass Rodeo is a catch-and-release fishing tournament for anglers targeting the largest bass. For junior anglers (ages 12 and under), the rodeo includes competitive categories for heaviest bass and heaviest cichlid, bream, or perch.

The Battle for the Bass Tournament is back again for their third year to encourage a fun and friendly school 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 50 students to register will receive a weigh bag donated by Berkley.

Boats on the Bayou is open to anglers with kayaks and other non-motorized watercraft and offers four competitive categories. All participating anglers will be entered to win a kayak, courtesy of Massey’s Professional Outfitters. Massey’s will also offer the opportunity for anglers to reserve a free kayak for the event. For 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 Morning Call on Dreyfous Avenue in City Park. The event will feature music as well as educational and hands-on activities for kids. LDWF mascot Robbie the Redfish will be on hand for photo opportunities. Event raffle prizes include a kayak donated by Academy Sports and Outdoors, charter fishing trips, along with tons of fishing gear and other items.

Online registration is now open and will close at 5 p.m. on March 22. 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 16 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 To receive recreational or commercial fishing email and text alerts, signup at