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Felsenthal’s Bream Festival to make a return this year

Posted on February 19, 2019

By Caitlan Butler
Staff Writer

Mayor Linda Newbury announced last week that Felsenthal would hold their annual Bream Festival again this year after flooding forced last year’s event’s cancellation.

“We had a flood last year and the waters were very high,” Newbury said, explaining why last year’s event did not take place.

Planning Association Vice President Craig Ellis said this year’s event is shaping up to mirror what made previous year’s festivals so successful.

“We’re trying to at least get it to the same as what it used to be,” Ellis said. “We’re hoping to just bring it back to the community like it was, recognizing the community, getting the whole community involved.”

The event is scheduled for Memorial Day weekend, as in past years. Ellis said the biggest attraction will still be the festival’s namesake bream fishing tournament, scheduled to take place May 25.

Ellis said the planning association is currently seeking sponsors to help provide prizes for tournament winners.

Baggo and horeshoe tournaments will also be held at the festival, along with a Little Miss/Little Mister Bream Festival Pageant.

“When they posted [about the pageant] on Facebook, it blew up pretty good. We got a lot of responses on that, so I know for sure that’s going to be a pretty big event,” Ellis said.

There will also be a crawfish boil and a catfish bake for attendees. Ellis said the planning association is currently trying to organize a barbeque cook-off as well, though he said no plans have been set in stone for that yet. A cake walk is planned as well.

Ellis, a resident of West Monroe, Louisiana, said the planning association is made up of nine voting members. He said he spends a lot of time at his camp in Felsenthal, which is why it was so important to him to help bring Breamfest back.

“[Felsenthal is] our second home,” he said. “We have different people – have all their input, have to vote on things and not one person is having to deal with everything.”

In past years, proceeds from Breamfest have gone towards charity, Newbury said; this year, the planning association will use proceeds for next year’s Festival, in hopes of making it even bigger and better than it has been in the past. After that, she said, they will continue to donate future proceeds.

“Oh, I’m excited. I really am excited,” Newbury said. “These folks (the planning association) came and spoke to the town council last Tuesday and they have really been working hard. … They’re going to put things back in place.”

The planning association meets twice monthly, Ellis said, and the meetings are open to the community Newbury said the association is still looking for volunteers.

The festival will also host vendors Ellis said this year, vendors will accommodated for free.

“We hope we get a good turnout, Ellis said. “I’m really excited.”

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Caitlan Butler can be reached at 870-862-6611 or