• 64°

Monterey resident enjoys refuge’s Second Saturday event

NATCHEZ — Tazman Stampley, 13, will jump at any opportunity to fish.

Because of this, the Monterey, La., resident felt right at home at the St. Catherine Creek National Wildlife Refuge Saturday.

The refuge held its Second Saturday event Saturday, and it didn’t take long for Stampley to cast his nets and lines in the backwaters on Magnolia Trail.

“My mom works for Bayou Cocodrie, and comes over here every so often,” Stampley said. “Even though she works (between the refuges), this is the first time I’ve ever been out here.”

In addition to fishing the backwaters of the refuge, manager Bob Strader said the event was also supposed to include a bird and plant walk, but no one showed up for it.

“We were hoping for a better turnout, and we’ll be focusing on how we can better market the event,” Strader said.

Still, Strader said there was plenty to do at the Magnolia Trail.

“We’re just trying to catch what’s out here in these backwaters,” Strader said. “All of this is Mississippi River water, and we’re trying to see what’s out here.”

For Stampley, though, the research part is just a bonus.

“As long as I get to fish, I’m happy,” tampley said.

Tazman’s mother, Deisha Stampley, said the outdoors in general is what made her son want to enjoy his Saturday morning at the refuge.

“If I just tell him we’re going to do something outdoors, he enjoys that,” Deisha said.

“I’ve worked on refuges his whole life, and he just likes the outdoors. He’s also a die-hard fisherman — he would do this all day. It doesn’t matter if he’s catching anything or not.”

Tazman said fishing is something passed down to him from his father, but the outdoors in general is the main reason he enjoys it.

“I’ve been fishing since before I can even remember,” Tazman said. “My dad’s a big fisherman, and he’d take me out with him all the time. I like fishing, but I mainly just love the outdoors.

“I’m in Boy Scouts, and that’s one of the reasons I like scouting, because you get to go on camps and stuff. I like not being cooped up in the house and being able to move around.”

Strader said his vision of the Second Saturday event is to make more children like Tazman aware of what the refuge has to offer.

“It’s a spin-off of the city’s First Friday event,” Strader said. “It gets put on the calendar as a regular date for people to come out here and do something.

“It’s geared towards getting more people involved in the refuge. Hunters and fishers know about it, but we’re trying to get more non-consumptive users.”

When more people begin showing up, Strader said he plans to keep the event structured around taking whoever’s interested on guided bird and plant tours, and letting children fish the backwaters.

And that’s a good thing for everyone who will come in the future, Deisha Stampley said.

“Every friend that Tazman brings enjoys being out on a refuge,” she said. “There are a good number of kids in town who don’t come out to places like this, and they should, because they can explore and be on their own.

“It’s also something safe to do. Refuges open up a whole new environment for them.”

News

Trash collection one day behind schedule for Thanksgiving

News

Ferriday man sentenced to life for 2019 slaying of Natchez schoolteacher

Business

Mayor: Silver Street raising and dock plans moving forward

News

Tree lighting event is Saturday in Natchez

News

Former Natchez Alderman David Massey dies at 72

News

Stewpot ready to serve needy on Thanksgiving

News

Saturday high-speed chase began in Louisiana, ended with crash in Natchez

News

No print edition of The Democrat on Friday

News

Natchez school board cancels bid opening for new high school due to COVID-19

News

5 Miss-Lou residents die of COVID-19 over weekend

News

Remains found in Natchez neighborhood

News

The Dart: Natchez resident loves music

News

Coroner: A Natchez woman dies with COVID-19 Sunday

DEVELOPING NEWS

Suspect in high-speed vehicle chase arrested in Natchez

BREAKING NEWS

Natchez Police investigating Saturday shooting that injured two people

News

Coroner: Two Ferriday men died with COVID-19 Saturday at Merit Health Natchez

News

Natchez freedmen and women largely funded Emancipation Monument in Washington, D.C.

News

Adams County coroner loses 25-year-old granddaughter to COVID-19, urges compliance with health guidelines

News

35-year-old Ferriday resident dies with COVID-19 as cases, hospitalizations continue rising

News

‘American Pickers’ star Mike Wolfe picks Natchez

News

COVID-19 numbers spike locally just before holidays

News

Norm Yvon resigns as lead administrator of Cathedral School

BREAKING NEWS

ACCS falls to Leake Academy in MAIS Class 5A state championship

News

Second suspect arrested in Tuesday armed robbery