Published: Apr 28, 2014 5:59 AM EDT
Updated: Apr 28, 2014 8:27 AM EDT

FORT MYERS BEACH, Fla. - The Southwest Florida Kayak Angler?s Association will host the first ever Kayak Angler Festival May 2-3.

One of the featured portions of the festival is a retooled version of the group?s infamous overnight kayak fishing tournament. Dubbed 24 Hours in Southwest Florida, the tournament runs from Friday evening to Saturday afternoon.

?This is a marathon tournament and is not for the feint of heart? said Bob Bramblet, Tournament Director.

?This is already a world class event with competitive anglers from all over the country, and now we offer cash prizes and longer fishing times? Bramblet said.

In addition to the tournament, festival goers can expect to see new products and paddling related vendors, live music, seminars and great food. The event is being held at the Fish Tale Marina on Ft Myers Beach and has a tackle shop, seafood restaurant and kayak rentals on site.

Another featured event is South Florida?s first ever Reel Paddling Film Festival. Rapid Media's 9th annual Reel Paddling Film Festival showcases the world's best paddling films to audiences in Canada, United States and around the world. The festival inspires more people to explore rivers, lakes and oceans, push physical and emotional extremes, embrace the lifestyle and appreciate the heritage of the wild places we paddle.

The Reel Paddling Film Festival is a film contest awarding winning films in 10 categories. The winners and other shortlisted films are then toured to more than 100 cities around the world, screening for an audience of more than 30,000 outdoor adventure enthusiasts and their friends and families.

Proceeds from the tournament are going to Heroes on the Water. HOW helps our Nation's injured active duty and veterans from all branches of the United States military heal using the therapeutic qualities of fishing from kayaks. What looks like a day trip of paddling and fishing is in fact something much deeper and long-lasting. Their unique kayak fishing program allows the participants a chance to decompress from the stresses associated with combat and the physical rigors of rehabilitation.

Warriors enjoy these benefits while on guided fishing trips held at various locations around the country.

Proceeds from the film festival are benefitting the Josh Stuller Medical Fund. More information, a full list of events and tickets can be found on the Association?s website at