Businesses along Red River play catch-up following February floo - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Businesses along Red River play catch-up following February floods

February dropped a record amount of rain in parts of the ArkLaTex, and some business owners say they're using March to clean up the damage floods left behind.  (Source: KSLA News 12) February dropped a record amount of rain in parts of the ArkLaTex, and some business owners say they're using March to clean up the damage floods left behind.  (Source: KSLA News 12)
Jimmy Sapp, owner of Red River South Marina. (Source: KSLA News 12) Jimmy Sapp, owner of Red River South Marina. (Source: KSLA News 12)
(Source: KSLA News 12) (Source: KSLA News 12)
BOSSIER PARISH, LA (KSLA) -

February dropped a record amount of rain on parts of the ArkLaTex.

That has some business owners say they're using March to clean up the damage floods left behind. 

"It has been atrocious," said Jimmy Sapp, who owns Red River South Marina in southern Bossier Parish. "It's been bad, worrying about the water and then trying to clean up and then it comes back. And I think it's affected our cabins.

"It's affected a lot of fishermen," he continued. "We've had some decent weather as far as nice, pretty weather. But they can't get on the river."

It's a ripple effect that has hit neighboring businesses as well.

"The fish biting down here?" asked one Handi Mart customer. 

"We haven't had too many people lately, but it's fixing to start picking back up," Handi Mart employee Farris Dushane said.

March and April are big for fishing tournaments along Red River.

So far, however, marina owners already have canceled two.

"It really declined a lot over the last 2 years," Dushane said, referring to customer traffic. "So we've gotten to where we're really slow lately, and it would be really nice if we picked back up again."

Fisherman Wes Biggs said he and other sportsmen are just waiting for the tides to turn.

"River's one of the best places to fish down here. But when the water's up that high, you better just stay away from it.

"I'm sure the fish is still biting, but it ain't something I wanna mess with it up."

Sapp became the owner of Red River South Marina, the cabins and multi-room trailers in December.

The Shreveport native said he has seen the river rise, just never from the view of a business owner. "They've told me horror stories, and I've seen a lot of the pictures.

"So just hoping for the best, you know. I was hoping that was a 100-year flood. That's what they always talk about," Sapp said.

"If we don't have another flood for another 100 years, I'm in pretty good shape."

Several big tournaments and other events are set for Red River South Marina this spring and summer. The first one is the ABA Ray Scott Championship, which businesses say they are excited about having.

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