Jim Moyes is the play-by-play broadcaster for Ponte Vedra High School’s football team, as well as the public address (PA) announcer for the University of North Florida’s baseball team. A Michigan native, Moyes began his broadcasting career in Muskegon, where he also owned a bar/restaurant.
Can you please tell us about your background?
As the son of a football, basketball and baseball coach, it was only natural that I would have a passion for sports, especially high school sports. I lived my entire pre-college life in North Muskegon, Michigan, where in addition to participating in sports, I began my long career in the media as a “cub reporter” for our local newspaper in 1956. I am an alumnus of Central Michigan and Michigan State University and served two years in the U.S. Army, including a stint in Vietnam. I began working in my step-father’s business in Traverse City, Michigan, after returning from the service, and it was in Traverse City where I began working as a sports announcer in 1967. I had the opportunity to return back to North Muskegon and purchase a business in 1976. I quickly resumed broadcasting high school football and basketball games in Muskegon until we moved to Ponte Vedra Beach in 2010.
What’s it like to be a sports broadcaster?
Most people associate me as a career broadcaster when, in fact, I did have a “real” job. When I wasn’t working as a broadcaster, I was the owner of a popular restaurant/bar in North Muskegon, Michigan. Just as here on the First Coast, high school football was huge up in the Muskegon area. I was fortunate over the years to have broadcast 34 state championship football games. Although the Muskegon area takes up only 2 percent of the population in Michigan, our area football teams won four of the eight state championships in 2008.
What brought you to the First Coast?
After my wife Mary and I retired about a decade ago, we stayed busy in the summer by traveling to the Milwaukee area where we would help out our busy son Jim and his wife Lanie transport our two grandsons (Jackson and Matthew Johnson) to their many sporting activities. When Jim was transferred to the First Coast, we just picked up stakes and followed them here. What a great decision!
What do you enjoy most about doing play-by-play for the Sharks?
Covering and watching high school sports has always been my number one sporting passion. I have been amazed at how talented our athletes are here in Ponte Vedra…in all the sports. The coaching staffs and administration have treated me like I have been a lifelong Shark. As an added bonus, I get the best seat in the house! (Ponte Vedra Sharks football games stream live on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Sharks-Football-133768580028472/.)
What do you enjoy most about living in Ponte Vedra?
This is the easiest question of all to answer. Living nearly our entire lives in an area that regularly experiences 100 inches of snow or more—the weather! Mary and I have also met so many great people here in Ponte Vedra. After renting homes here for our first six years, we sold our home in Michigan and made a lifelong decision by purchasing a new home in Nocatee. We have also found a church (Ponte Vedra United Methodist) that we like very much where Mary volunteers for a number of functions, most notably as a remarkable quilt maker.
What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
Shortly after moving to Ponte Vedra in 2010, I found myself with a lot of free time on my hands. I penned a little note to then Ponte Vedra Athletic Director Gene Baker that I would be happy to help out with their program in any way possible. Little did I know then what I was in for down the road. Thanks to Lewis Warford and Bruce Morris, I was invited to help out with web-streaming Shark baseball games. Now seven years later, I find myself, not only working Shark baseball and football games, but I spent the winter months as the scorekeeper for PVHS basketball games. For the past five years I have been fortunate to be the public address announcer for North Florida baseball, a position that I have enjoyed very much, as baseball has always been my favorite sport. Now, it is time to slow down a little bit and turn my basketball duties over to another volunteer and spend some valuable Friday night time with my more than understanding wife. What a great decision we made to now call Ponte Vedra our home!