Fishing tale: 'Famine, then feast'
Business is booming for Belton Lake and Stillhouse Hollow fishing guide.
TUESDAY DECEMBER 28, 2021
Bob Maindelle’s fishing guide service operates on a 100-percent catch-and-release system. “You have to see the big picture, and that means being responsible and putting the fish back.”
Janet, Allen and Joshua Howe hold six of the 120 bass they caught Monday on Belton Lake while fishing with Bob Maindelle of Holding the Line Fishing Guide Service. Photo courtesy of Holding the Line
Guide to begin 16th year on local lakes
By DAVID STONE, Our Town Temple
Monday was a prime fishing day on Belton Lake. Just ask the Howes — Janet, Allen and Joshua caught 120 bass before noon.
“Definitely a good morning,” said Bob Maindelle of Holding the Line Fishing Guide Service. “We average about 86 fish per trip, so yes, that’s a haul.”
Maindelle, who lives on the south shore of Stillhouse Hollow, is starting his 16th year as a Central Texas fishing guide.
“I’ve been fishing Stillhouse and Belton for about 29 years,” he said. “I occasionally have customers who want to fish Georgetown or one of the Austin-area lakes, but most of my trips are here in Bell County.”
After learning the local lakes, Maindelle launched his guide service in 2006.
“We focus on white bass on Stillhouse, and on whites and hybrid striped bass on Belton,” he said. “The hybrids are a sterile fish and can’t reproduce, so they have to be restocked. Belton is one of the lakes Texas Parks & Wildlife uses to invest their hybrid resources.”
Maindelle said his service operates on a 100-percent catch-and-release system.
“We have to,” he explained, “because I take far more than my share of fish out of these lakes, and I’m not the only guide working. You have to see the big picture, and that means being responsible and putting the fish back.”
While the COVID-19 pandemic has been disastrous for many local businesses, Holding the Line and other fishing services have prospered.
“COVID was famine, then feast,” he said after returning from yesterday’s fishing excursion with the Howe family. “As a guide, I was a non-essential business so the state shut me down for 40 days. That was tough.”
But once Maindelle got the green light, business took off like a freshly hooked smallmouth bass.
“No one was working, and everyone had these stimulus checks — my bookings went through the roof,” he said. “By early June I had made up for the losses of March and April.”
“If you think about it, fishing is a safe bet away from the masses,” he said. “You are outdoors on an island known as my boat with a group of your choosing. It’s a good scenario, and it has been a boon to my business and the outdoors industry as a whole.”
Maindelle’s bass boat is Coast Guard-rated for eight people, but he limits trips to six.
“Four to six is a good-sized fishing party,” he said, “but I often do trips with just one person. Usually it’s someone new to the area who wants to get to know the lakes and get a few tips.”
Maindelle fishes Monday through Thursday mornings, and on Thursday afternoons.
“On Saturday mornings, I conduct on-water sonar training for folks who have bought fish-finding equipment,” he said. “It’s a big part of my business — probably about 10 percent.”
“High-end sonar equipment can help find fish,” he said. “But I also rely on past experiences and signs such as fish-eating birds. If birds are feeding, fish are likely nearby.”
Once a person or group schedules a fishing trip, Maindelle begins preparing for the excursion.
“I make sure we have good pre-trip communication,” he said. “A few days before we fish I send an email letting them know what to bring, what not to bring, what to wear and where we will meet. Once they arrive, we have a safety briefing, and I say a prayer for our safe return. I go over some techniques we will be using, and the first hour is usually spent practicing those techniques.”
“Then,” he said, “we fish.”
Bob Maindelle of Holding the Line Fishing Guide Service waves from his “office.”
THE LARGEST EVENTS CALENDAR IN CENTRAL TEXAS
Bold Republic Brewing Company’s celebration includes Earle Nelson from 7 to 9 p.m. and Martian Folk from 9:30 to midnight. There will be a champagne toast at midnight.
Dead Fish Grill will host the Hidden Sayers Band. 9 p.m.
Seaton Star Hall will host a New Year’s Eve Dance featuring The Billy Holt Band. 6 p.m. to 1 a.m.
Arthur Murray Temple will host a New Year’s Eve Black & White Ball. Dinner, dancing, live entertainment, a group class, and a champagne toast are all included in the ticket. Join us for a fun evening and start the new year on the right foot. 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m.
Fire Base Brewing Co will celebrate Beer Me a New Year. Live music, finger foods, games, Ball drop at 10 p.m., and complimentary champagne toast at midnight. $25 online or $30 at the door.
O’Briens Irish Pub with the Jason Custer Band. 10 p.m.
Bo’s Barn Dancehall Craig Howell & Somewhere in Texas will hit the stage at 9 p.m. $25 per person to include Cover, Party Favors, Champagne, Breakfast and Black Eyed Peas!!! 7 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Corky’s Wine Bar Rock in the New Year with Moon Tide, a power trio from Austin that covers hits from the 60’s until now. Tickets are only $35! Included in the price: midnight champagne toast, party favors, a souvenir glass, breakfast food after the ball drops and your live music and dancing for the evening! Attire is semi-formal.
DEAN’S SERIES: KATHRYN FOUSE: Let the Games Begin with Kathryn Fouse, piano. Join us for an entertaining evening of music from popular video games. 7:30 p.m., Jan. 18 at Sue & Frank Mayborn Performing Arts Center at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor.
EXHIBIT OPENING: The next art exhibit opening will be Jan. 8 from 5 to 7 p.m. The featured artist is PHOKUS and the exhibit will feature a mixed media presentation entitled "So tonight that I may dream.”
THE QUEEN’S CARTOONISTS: The College of Visual & Performing Arts at UMHB features a band that plays music from classic cartoons and contemporary animation while synchronizing the music to video projections of the original film. 7:30 p.m. Jan. 21, at the Sue & Frank Mayborn Performing Arts Center.
AIZURI QUARTET: This group will perform at the CAC on Jan. 22 at 7:30 p.m. Described as "genuinely exciting" by the New York Times and "elegant" and "inquisitive" by The New Yorker, the quartet presents a vibrant selection of new music and standards. The group was nominated for a Grammy in 2019.
LION KING JR.: The Temple High School Theater Arts department will present a production featuring actors from across the school district on Jan. 27-30. The Jan. 27-29 shows will start at 7 p.m. and the Sunday matinee will begin at 2. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. Tickets are available at CentralTexasTickets.com.
POPS CONCERT: The Temple Symphony Orchestra will feature trumpeter Allen Vizzutti in a January 29 Pops Concert at the Mary Alice Marshall Performing Arts Center at Temple College. Concert begins at 7:30 p.m.
THE CONTEMPORARIES TELETHON “THAT’S ENTERTAINMENT” will be held on stage Jan. 29 at the CAC. The telethon proceeds provide financial support for the building and the programming.
DEAN’S SERIES: EMILY & JONATHAN GRAY: College of Visual & Performing Arts at UMHB presents Emily & Jonathan Gary in concert at 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 4 inside the Sue & Frank Mayborn Performing Arts Center.
INHERIT THE WIND: The Temple Civic Theater will hold auditions on Feb. 2- and 21, and the show will be presented April 1-10.
LAST OF THE RED-HOT LOVERS: The Temple Civic Theater show will run Feb. 4-13 at TCT.
MUSIC TO HELP OTHERS: Christ Episcopal Church is presenting a concert to benefit local charities at 4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 6 at the church. The concert will celebrate Black History Month and honor the memory of Martin Luther King Jr. The concert also will be streamed at https://www.facebook.com/christchurchtx and will benefit the Un-Included Club, a nonprofit organization that provides literacy, urban agriculture, and leadership programs for underserved youth. Donations will be accepted at the door or online. The Sunday afternoon concert series is a continuing ministry of the church. The concerts, featuring local musicians, have raised more than $14,000 for area charities, food banks and medical clinics serving those in need.
THE VANDOLIERS - The Cultural Activities Center’s Texas Music Series opens on Feb. 12. Season tickets are on sale at cacarts.org.
VISITING ARTIST JEFFERY CARL: Join us to hear Jeffery Carl, an artist based outside Chicago, whose work explores how our relationship to geography informs our self-understanding, the development of communities, and the ways in which we shape our environment. 4 p.m. Feb. 17 at the Sue & Frank Mayborn Performing Arts Center at UMHB.
WIND/JAZZ ENSEMBLES: An evening of musical entertainment from the UMHB wind ensemble and jazz ensemble at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 22 at the Sue & Frank Mayborn Performing Arts Center.
CAMP ROCK: THE MUSICAL: Performances are March 5 and 6 at the Cultural Activities Center.
JIMMIE VAUGHAN - The Cultural Activities Center’s Texas Music Series continues with guitar legend Jimmie Vaughan on March 19. Season tickets are on sale at cacarts.org.
STEEL MAGNOLIAS: The Temple Civic Theater will hold auditions on March 27-28 and the show runs May 6-15.
FESTIVAL OF PRAISE: This soul-stirring tour will be at the Bell County Expo Center on April 9 and will be headlined by Gospel music icon Fred Hammond, along with Marvin Sapp and Hezekiah Walker.
VALLEJO - The Cultural Activities Center’s Texas Music Series continues on April 23 with a performance by Vallejo. Season tickets are on sale at cacarts.org.
SEASON FINALE: The Temple Symphony Orchestra’s season finale will be at 3 p.m. May 8 at Temple College and will feature pianists Frances Renzi and Anthony Pattin.
RECKLESS KELLY - The Cultural Activities Center’s Texas Music Series continues June 11 with Reckless Kelly. Season tickets are on sale at cacarts.org.
TEXAS ELITE EXPLOSION POLE VAULTING: Many of the top professional, college and high school pole vaulters in the world will compete in the nation’s second largest pole vaulting competition. 9 a.m. both days.
NO LIMITS MONSTER TRUCK WINTER NATIONALS & MUD RACES are coming to The Expo on Jan. 14 & 15. See some of the nation’s most competitive monster trucks and motocross racers as they invade Bell County. 7:30 p.m. both nights. Tickets at bellcountyexpo.com
LONE STAR GUN SHOW is going Jan. 15-6. Bring in your old gun and trade up. Look at all kinds of merchandise from New and Used Guns, Knives, Swords, Hunting Gear, Books, Coins, Medals, Ammo, Reloading Equipment and Supplies. 9-5 on Saturday, 10-4 on Sunday.
A SAMI SHOW: ARTS & CRAFTS MARKET will be in Assembly Hall from 10-5 Saturday, Jan. 22, and 11-4 Sunday, Jan. 23.
PARKER McCOLLUM RED DIRT MARDI GRAS features Texas mainstream country at its best. Saturday, Jan. 29 at 8 p.m. Buy tickets and select seats at bellcountyexpo.com
BELL COUNTY YOUTH FAIR & PRCA RODEO is coming to The Expo on Feb. 11 and 12. Details on this big show will be coming soon!
MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR will be held Feb. 19 and 20 with a dazzling array of workshops and lectures on how to grow and raise your own food, build your own root cellar and more. Details are coming!
TEMPLE AREA HOME BUILDERS HOME & GARDEN SHOW will be held Feb. 24-26. Check out the largest Home & Garden Show in Central Texas with 125 exhibits. Friday, 6-9; Saturday, 10-6; Sunday, Noon-5.
GAULT SITE TOUR: Join us Feb. 12 at the Gault Site for a tour! It is a full guided 3 hour tour across the 2.5 miles long site. Learn about the many artifacts excavated and the Paleoindian culture found right here in Bell County! Pre-registration required; $10/person 11 years and older. All participants are asked to meet at the site at 8:30am. The tour will begin promptly at 9:00am. Maps will be provided a few days prior to the scheduled tour date. The site is 30 minutes from Belton, between Salado and Florence. Tickets are $10 per person, payable by debit or credit card only. Payment is needed within 5 days of registration. Please call the museum at 254-933-5243 to make payment. All proceeds go directly to the Gault School of Archaeological Research.
FACING THE INFERNO: THE WILDFIRE PHOTOGRAPHY OF KARI GREER: Colorful, intimate, and intensely dramatic images that capture the work of wildland firefighters in this new exhibit that runs through Jan. 15. Amazing photography.
COMING NEXT MONTH! ALIENTO a TEQUILA: This exhibit explores and celebrates the landscape, culture, and traditions that gave birth to tequila. A series of photographs by Joel Salcido include the original distilleries that founded the industry, as well as several artisanal tequilerías committed to the ancestral ways of tequila-making, from harvest to bottle. Jan. 28-March 16.
Monday nights — Yoga Classes offered by Sara Dodd at the Cultural Activities Center. $12. 5:15 p.m. class.
Tuesday nights beginning Jan. 18 — Clay with Marilyn - go to cacarts.org to sign up for her series of classes
Thursday nights beginning Jan 6 — Clay with Lindsay - go to cacarts.org to sign up for her classes
Wednesday nights — Open mic comedy night at Corky’s Wine Bar. Sign up at 7:30 p.m., show starts at 8
Saturday nights — Comedy Showcase at Corky’s Wine Bar. Open at 7 p.m., show starts at 8.
December 31 - January 1 - Texas Elite Pole Vaulting. The Expo Explosion, the second largest indoor pole vaulting event in the country. Bell County Expo Center’s Garth Arena.
January 3-4 — Learn the art of glass fusing during evening classes at A Work of Art Studio. Contact: Jillmoon4655@gmail.com
January 6, Thursday - In partnership with the Temple Community Clinic and other sponsors, the Living Well in Bell wellness series will debut at the CAC. The first presenters for the 2022 series will be Dr. Patricia J. Sulak and Dr. Jeffrey Waxman who will discuss all aspects of well-being. 6 p.m.
January 6, Thursday - Central Texas Arts League meets to plan a year of creative ventures. Open to the public. 6:00 pm to 8:00 p.m. Come learn about the plans and meet with fellow artists in the Central Texas area.
January 7, Friday - On the first Friday of every month, historic downtown Temple transforms into a giant party. Enjoy street music and performances, drinks, food, and after-hours shopping.
January 8, Saturday - Cabin Fever: Stargazing Family Day at Temple Railroad & Heritage Museum. Learn about constellations, meteor showers and other celestial objects while checking out the night sky. 10 a.m.
January 8, Saturday — Great British Rock ’n’ Roll Name that Tune Bingo at Fire Base Brewing Co. 7:30 p.m.
January 11, Tuesday - Shimmy and shake your way over to Sammons Community Center for a 6-week fun-filled Belly dancing course. Tighten your core by learning a mixture of movements with Colleen Pannell, Instructor. $90
January 14-15 - No Limits Monster Truck Winter Nationals & Mud Races. Some of the nation’s most competitive truck and motocross racers as they invade Bell County Expo Arena on Friday and Saturday. 7:30 p.m.
January 15, Saturday - Game Show Night by Texas Red at Fire Base Brewing Co. We have the night for you! 4 rounds of the game show questions and prize-winning for all! Free to play and Family Friendly! Who will walk away with the evening's Oscar? Play as a team or individual. Win free drinks and other prizes! 7-9 p.m.
January 16, Sunday — Downtown Drag at Corkys featuring Lacey Luxx, Luiz Fatale, Naima Fatale, Beauty and Rah’jai Mirage Jackson. $25 VIP, $15 general admission. 8 p.m.
January 19, Wednesday - The city of Temple is undertaking the development of a Mobility Master Plan designed to produce a multimodal transportation system. The second public involvement meeting will be hosted online with a live event and in person at the Wilson Park Recreation Center on from 5:30-7:30 p.m.
January 22, Saturday — Name that Tune Bingo: 80s and 90s Mixtape at Fire Base Brewing Co.
January 29, Saturday - Parker McCollum Red Dirt Mardi Gras at Bell County Expo. 8 p.m.
February 4, Friday - On the first Friday of every month, historic downtown Temple transforms into a giant party. Enjoy street music and performances, drinks, food, and after-hours shopping.
February 5, Saturday - Geek Out Family Day at Temple Railroad & Heritage Museum. Want to show off your geeky side? Come out to the museum for Geek Out Family Day. Dress up as your favorite superhero, cartoon, or video game character. Enjoy the nerdier side of life.
February 11-12 - Bell County Youth Fair Livestock Show & PRCA Rodeo. The Bell County PRCA Rodeo is currently in its 34th year of continuous operation at the Bell County Expo Center. Last year, the Bell County Youth Fair awarded over $25,000 in scholarships to local area youth. https://agrilife.org/bellctyyouthfair/
February 12, Saturday - Kyle Mathis plays an acoustic solo gig downstairs at Tom Sefcik Hall in Seaton. 8 p.m. to midnight
February 12, Saturday — 5th annual Onesie Bar Crawl. The comfiest bar crawl ever. Starts at Mo’s Rail Yard Saloon. Map will be available. www.crawlwith.us/temple/onesie#tickets
LIST YOUR EVENT! Email info to OurTownTemple@gmail.com with “What’s Happening” in the subject line.