Love my crawfish!

This picture was taken at the original Steamboat Bill’s in Lake Charles, LA. My favorite location isn’t the original, but the one just across the I-10 Bridge.

Sunday marked the end of a week’s worth of official activities celebrating Aransas County’s Sesquicentennial (150th anniversary). I hope everyone took the opportunity to participate in at least one of the events. As I said in a recent column, “I know some of you might not be interested in Aransas County history, but I’ll give you a heads up, it’s pretty interesting once you get into it.”

With that in mind, I’m sharing with you David J. Murrah’s speech (edited for publication) given at the June 12 Founders’ Day Breakfast. It’s easy to find … it’s on this page!

Maybe put it aside if it’s too long for one sitting, but don’t throw it away. He did a great job with this, and I know you’ll enjoy it.

New Father’s Day tradition

Last year my wife and I were in Lake Charles on Father’s Day. I love crawfish, and especially love the crawfish served up at Steamboat Bill’s in Lake Charles, located just across the I-10 Bridge.

There’s something about the way they boil them that makes them perfect for my palate. Not too spicy, not too plain … just perfect. And the flavor of the juices inside is perfect, as well.

If you love crawfish, you know exactly what I’m talking about. You have your favorite place.

No slight to any of the local restaurants, because trust me, I’ve eaten a bunch of their crawfish, as well!

About four or five years ago we were eating in a Mississippi restaurant and I was apparently showing my frustration while laboring with a small plate (maybe a pound or two) of crawfish. A young waitress picked up on it, and offered to teach me a quick and easy way to eat a mudbug without wasting any meat. I know that sounds dumb to some folks, but I also know there are many of you who still struggle eating mudbugs.

This is very important stuff!

Today, I pay if forward to anyone near me who is showing frustration while eating crawfish … especially if I pick up, via conversation (which means they have to be talking louder than normal), that they wish they knew a better way to eat them.

My wife just kind of turns her head when I do this, but not once has a person not thanked me … just like I thanked the waitress!

A few weeks before this year’s Father’s Day my wife reminded me we were in Lake Charles last year on the big day, and it turned out it was the last day Steamboat Bill’s was serving crawfish.

Needless to say, it was a great day as I devoured pounds and pounds of crawfish without stopping.

So, this year, my wife suggested we just make going to Lake Charles for Father’s Day a tradition, where I’m pretty much guaranteed to get my last fill up on mudbugs.

It has been two years in a row now, so I guess it’s a tradition!

This year I got to chow down on crawfish Friday night at Steamboat Bills just across the I-10 Bridge, and then on Saturday night it was crawfish at the original location, also in Lake Charles, but off the loop. The crawfish actually taste a little different at each of the locations.

Maybe it’s the setting. I’m not really sure. But, if I had to choose, my favorite is the I-10 location.

The original Steamboat Bill’s opened its doors in 1982.

I used to catch crawfish in the fields and creeks in Baytown when I was growing up. My buddies and me would boil our catch and eat away, but I didn’t really start loving them until a few years ago … probably about the time that waitress helped me out.

There’s just something about the ones at Steamboat Bills that keeps bringing me back. Maybe it’s because I was born in N’Awlins and the fake Cajun in me comes out.

I think my voice even changes a little bit when I eat crawfish in Louisiana.

Did I ever tell you how I had to take speech two times in the first grade after moving from N’Awlins to El Paso?

That’s another column.

In the meantime, I’ll just bask in the glory of a new family tradition.

Until next week, have a good week.

Mike Probst can be reached at

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