by Nelva Toups Maxey
Curtis and I were looking for property in Crystal Beach just so he could dock his shrimp boat. We found six lots on Gator point which already had a small dock. We bought the property. Two months later, the Chapmans Point property came up for sale. Our realtor knew we were looking for property with a dock and this property happened to be a run down bait camp, just across the Canal from the Gator Point property. She asked Curtis if he was interested in that property. Without even asking the price, Curtis answered “YES” I want it!
There we were with two properties not knowing what to do with too much property. Then Curtis had an idea. He said let’s try opening a bait camp. Let’s see if we can keep the shrimp alive. We opened our doors Memorial weekend 2004. No one knew we had bait and no one stopped in to see what kind of business we opened. I literally had to stand on the dock and ask boaters as they motored by, if they were looking for bait! We stayed with it learning about live bait as we went along and it turned out we were pretty good at it. Curtis shrimps everyday in the summer time and if he can’t catch shrimp, NO ONE CAN! It’s actually part of our motto. “If we don’t have it, no one does”! In 2012, we’re considered the largest and best bait camp on the Bolivar Peninsula. Our customers tell us they stop at our place first because they know “if we don’t have it, no one does.”
Nelva and Curtis Maxey
Bluewater Bait Camp