Shop Local Spotlight: Quality Automotive and Bait Shop opens on Belle Terre

Published 4:29 pm Tuesday, February 8, 2022

LAPLACE — Automotive repair and live fishing bait is an unexpected combination.

Yet, when paired together, these services fulfill a variety of needs in the St. John the Baptist Parish community.

Russell Fisher is the owner of Quality Automotive and Bait Shop, a new business that opened January 31 at 157 Belle Terre Blvd. in LaPlace.

Born and raised in LaPlace, Fisher has been in the automotive business on and off for more than 25 years. After setting a goal to own his own shop, Fisher acquired two automotive repair stores in Hammond in 2019. The second of the two happened to offer the unique combination of bait shop, propane and auto repair services, and Fisher was eager to carry that concept over to his newest shop in LaPlace.

“An opportunity arose for me to come back home and fill a lot of niches here in town. There’s definitely a need for more quality auto repair, bait and tackle. It works very, very well,” Fisher said. “If you just have a propane dispensing business or just have a bait and tackle shop, it’s almost impossible for those to stand alone because there’s just not enough revenue involved. Whenever you saddle that into the footprint of another business, if you have a large showroom like we have here, the bait and tackle shop fits perfectly. It really helps to make the business thrive.”

South Louisiana is a sportsman’s paradise, but fishermen in St. John Parish were previously limited to shopping at Walmart for their tackle needs. Live bait was nowhere to be found within the parish, but that’s changed with Quality Automotive and Bait Shop. Crickets, worms, nightcrawlers, superworms and shiners are available in the showroom, along with a wide selection of fresh and saltwater tackle.

Quality Automotive and Bait Shop also carries kerosene to help locals with their home heating needs. Fisher expects to have propane in stock before the end of the month.

According to Fisher, Quality Automotive and Bait Shop’s first service to the community was cleaning up the junk vehicles that previously turned the main stretch of Belle Terre Boulevard into an eyesore.

The community now has access to complete automotive services encompassing everything from simple mechanical repairs and oil changes all the way up to AC work, diagnostics and engine replacement.

Fisher began his decades-long career in the automotive industry right down the street at the Goodyear facility. Through the years, he worked at Firestone, ran several stores, and eventually became the manager of a successful dealership. However, there came a point in time where he left the business and decided he would only come back if he had the opportunity to run his own shop.

“I saw the way corporate America does things as far as manipulation of the customer, and that drove me away from the business,” Fisher said. “I really do enjoy this business, which is why I wanted to have my own shop. I have the authority to make the calls, and I know things will be done right.”

With multiple repair facilities in the region, Fisher has the resources to offer dealership-quality repairs at a lesser price. Quality Automotive and Bait Shop also offers short turnaround times.

“Most vehicles are touched the same day they come in,” Fisher said. “We offer high quality repairs, but you get your vehicle back in a timely fashion. I have a large network of highly qualified individuals to draw upon.”

Qualified technicians are always welcome to apply to join the team.

Quality Automotive and Bait Shop’s hours are from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday. For more information, call 985-359-1570.

 To nominate a local business for L’OBSERVATEUR’s next Shop Local spotlight, please email brooke.robichaux@lobservateur.com.