There are other restaurants where “fish camp” is part of the motif. At Ezell’s Fish Camp in Lavaca, it’s part of its history.
Charles Agnew Ezell sold fish to people crossing the Tombigbee River during the Great Depression. That grew into a fish market on the river and into a hunting club where people would come for fried catfish and hush puppies starting in 1937. The Ezell’s Fish Camp restaurant opened in 1954.
Agnew Hall is the latest generation of the Ezell family to own and operate Ezell’s Fish Camp. He said that rich history was threatened when COVID-19 shut down the restaurant.
“We were shut down for much of the year until they lifted some restrictions to go to 50% capacity,” Hall said. “To be honest with you, after all of the history we were contemplating whether we would survive at all. We didn’t know. We still don’t know. We’re blessed to be here and still operating.”
The restaurant’s size is making it easier to adjust to the new capacity rules.
“We have a large building, which helps us,” Hall said. “We have a seating capacity of 300, so we can still seat 150 people and still socially distance and have everybody feel safe.”
They use Alabama farm-raised catfish and the cole slaw is homemade. The hush puppies and fried pickles are also favorites on the menu.
“I think it’s good,” Hall said. “I’m a little biased.”