For one thing, the modern and comfortable facility set in the middle of the world’s most fertile fishing grounds is not simply Port Eads. It’s now called the Port Eads Marina.
It was born in $12 million construction dollars that the Feds shelled out to the Plaquemines Parish government to make the parish whole again after Hurricane Katrina erased the historical structure that stood on the modern facility’s footprint.
With a brand spanking new facility in hand, the parish sagely sought out professional management, settling on John Burrell’s High Adventure Company, LLC out of Woodstock, Georgia.
The firm, said brother Drew Burrell, is involved in a host of lodges, outposts, ranches, and safari operations specializing in world class fishing, wing shooting, deer hunting, and big game hunting.
“Some, such as Port Eads,” he explained, “are managed and operated on a day-to-day basis by High Adventure. For others, we hold exclusive booking rights. As an outfitter, our connections reach around the globe: South America, Europe, Africa, Russia, and the Yukon.
“People don’t really know that we are open yet, yet it is open to the public for anyone. We call ourselves a hotel and a restaurant as well as a marina 23 miles from civilization.”
He ticked off their amenities: 8 rooms with 3 bunks (6 beds) and a private bath per room, a dining room and bar, 2 living rooms, Direct TV, WiFi, 18,000 square feet of dock space, 60 boat slips with electrical and water service with daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and annual rates, annual slips for houseboats, live and frozen bait, non-ethanol gas and diesel, a fish cleaning station, ice, and a 2,000 foot airstrip.
Part-time manager Scott Pelas is a 43-year-old local boy, born and raised in Port Sulphur. Besides holding a charter captain’s license, his background in carpentry and culinary arts allows him to contribute to every facet of the marina’s operation.
“You don’t have to rent a room to enjoy Port Eads,” he added to Burrell’s comments. “You can come in the middle of the day to take a break in the air conditioning, get something to eat or get a drink.
“Port Eads is more than just for people with yachts. It’s for everyday people, as well as members of the New Orleans Big Game Fishing Club, which still holds tournaments here.”
Tony Bruce’s role as bait manager and fishing coordinator is to oversee the facility’s live bait operation and make charter fishing arrangements. As craggy and bold as Pelas is low-key and soft-spoken, the pair makes an interesting team.
Port Eads Bait Company holds a special bait license, which allows the capture of shrimp and croakers out of season for bait sales. Bruce’s goal is to keep his tanks stocked with live shrimp, croakers, and mullet. Frozen mullet, squid, pogies, and shrimp are also available.
Information about reservations and the marina’s services is available by phone at 504-308-1602 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.