The 2019 Bass Fishing Hall of Fame induction ceremonies, held for the third consecutive year at Johnny Morris’ Wonders of Wildlife Museum and Aquarium on Oct. 3, hosted more guests and raised more revenue for the Hall’s programs than any prior such event. As Chris Armstrong, Ed Chambers, Mark Davis, David Fritts and Davy Hite were inducted, a “who’s who” of the fishing world mingled, told stories and bid on various items, including fishing gear, trips and artwork.
“The live and silent auctions were wildly successful,” said Hall of Fame Board President Donald Howell. “The proceeds will allow us to substantially further our mission of celebrating, promoting and preserving the sport of bass fishing. We are thankful that Johnny Morris has given us a facility with which to do so.”
The 250 plus attendees bid vigorously on the assembled items, and generosity ran rampant. When one donor bid $2,500 for a copy of Bob Cobb’s book titled “The B.A.S.S. Story Unplugged,” Cobb matched that bid. For the first time, the Hall utilized online bidding to allow those not in attendance to have a shot at taking home some prizes.
In addition to inducting the five honorees, the Hall of Fame recognized the longstanding and ongoing contributions of charter board member Bill Fletcher.
“We feel like we are growing exponentially,” said board VP John Mazurkiewicz. “The money that we’ve raised will help that continue, but the real catalyst behind our acceleration is the huge number of people who’ve put hours of sweat equity into the process. Building this Hall is a labor of love, and we’re thrilled that the public is increasingly realizing that this is a celebration of our collective history. We have momentum now and we expect next year’s events to be even bigger and better.”
Planning is already underway for the 2020 event. For details about the Hall and its mission, visit www.BassFishingHOF.com, or contact BFHOF executive director Barbara Bowman at firstname.lastname@example.org.