If you live within driving distance of Palmasola, FL and have a hankerin’ for a new kind of derby, I may have your weekend endeavor: a mullet tourney.
Some more factoids from the Bradenton, FL Times:
> The tournament is held in honor of Ben Gullett, so it’s called the Ben Gullett Mullet Invitational. We can’t make this stuff up.
> There is a pre-tourney captain’s meeting and a weigh-in: 6 fish, all dead, must be kept on ice.
> Entry fees are $150 for adults â€“ I assume that’s per team â€“ and $75 for juniors. For prizes, the entry fees will be divided among the top three winners in each division.
> Contenders will fish using cast nets from Tampa to Venice â€“ Tampa to Venice. Holy cow. If someone runs that far for mullet, they deserve to win!
> Only saltwater mullets are allowed. I guess that means the rare, but still prevalent, land mullet is off limits.
Don’t know if this is punishment or what, but “he public is invited to a smoked and fried mullet supper served from 4:00 -7:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 16, at the AMI Power Squadron in Palmasola. Those in attendance can purchase a plate for $10 consisting of either fried or smoked mullet, grits, hush puppies, slaw, cookie and drink.”
I’ve never eaten mullet, but shouldn’t there be some gravel served to get that fish down?
Also says “tournament T-shirts will be available along with a commemorative program.” I want a T-shirt!
On a serious note, proceeds of the tourney will fund youth outdoor activities, and the event was started by the Gullett family as a tribute to their father Ben Gullet who was an old-time mullet fisherman. Pretty cool.