Operation Open Arms offers local businesses, associations, and individuals an opportunity to support our active duty troops. We are an all-volunteer 501(c)3 charity in Southwest Florida and are not affiliated with any other Southwest Florida charities.
Founder Captain John Bunch is a professional fishing guide with a passion for fishing. Born and raised on a small barrier island off the coast of Charleston, South Carolina, he grew up with fishing as a major part of his life. He now resides on another barrier island in Pine Island, Florida.
Captain Bunch is well known in the southwest Florida Gulf Coast area as an expert Fishing Guide. In the March 2007, Bonita Living Magazine called Capt GiddyUp one of the Top Guides in Florida. Also in March 2007, Award Winning Outdoor Writer, Byron Stout of the News-Press featured Capt GiddyUp as one of SW FL top Snook Experts.
As media personality “Capt. GiddyUp”, for many years he was Co-Host of SW FL Outdoors TV Show and now can be seen on adventures of “Light Tackle Angler” with Capt. John Follweiler. Capt. Bunch was recently elected to the lofty position of the Board of Directors of the Florida Guide Association. He recently appeared on a special feature of NBC’s The Today Show as the Founder of Operation Open Arms . In May 2007, he was the subject of a Wall Street Journal article. Honda Marine features Capt. GiddyUp in their 2006 Outboard Catalog “Proven”.
His weekly Fishing Report is now a Friday morning radio feature for The Keys Radio Group in Marathon, Florida.
Florida Sportsman magazine selected him as a presenter at their Offshore and Inshore Seminar Series in 2004, 2005, 2006, and 2007. The Magazine has asked him to write a feature article for the magazine to appear in the Fall of 2007.
Here’s what Robin Smiley of Florida Sportsman Magazine has to say about his witty seminar speaker:
“… He has developed “nearshore” trolling with big lipped lures to a science, catching grouper in six feet of water around mangroves and big breeding snook over reefs several miles offshore. ”
Captain GiddyUp also appears as a contributing editor for the “Waves” section of the News-Press reaching a circulation of 525,000. His feature “Nautically Speaking” appears in the Naples Daily News Boating & Fishing Section and he is also featured in the Pine Island Eagle. His contributing articles also appear in the Naples News, Marco Gazette, and The Bonita Banner.
Scott Clair of the Naples News had this to say – “As a contributing writer to Nautically Speaking, Capt. John “GiddyUp” Bunch has proven to be just as deft with a punch line as he is with a fishing line. One of the top professional fishing guides in Florida, Capt. GiddyUp’s articles mix expertise with humor, always providing the reader with a wondrous adventure. Read Capt. GiddyUp’s monthly article in Nautically Speaking, you’re guaranteed to learn…and laugh!”
Captain GiddyUp is a newlywed having tied the knot with his lovely bride Jennifer Shannahan in June of 2011.