Recreational fishing is big business, generating more than $125 billion in economic output and more than one million American jobs.
If sportfishing were a corporation, it would rank above Bank of America or IBM on the Fortune 500 list of largest American companies and the economic contributions of recreational fishing have grown steadily over the last several decades.
Inside the numbers
According to a 2008 report by the American Sportfishing Association:
More Americans fish than play golf (24.4 million) and tennis (10.4 million) combined.
At nearly 40 million, the number of American anglers is more than
33 times the average attendance per game at all Major League baseball parks combined.
The more than one million jobs supported by anglers are almost three times the number of people who work for United Parcel Service in the U.S.
The National Sporting Goods Association ranked fishing sixth out of 42 recreation activities, preceded only by walking, swimming, exercising, camping and bowling.
ESPNOutdoors.com and Bassmaster.com coverage
Between ESPNOutdoors.com and Bassmaster.com, there will be nearly 15 reporters walking the floor and gathering content for both sites.
There will be full coverage starting early Wednesday morning and finishing late Friday night, including a new product blog, state of the industry, video from across the floor, blogs from BASS senior writers, in-depth features on new baits, rods, reels and trends, and much more.
(For an idea of what BASS is looking forward to seeing, click here)
To summarize: With 350,000 square feet to walk, 431 exhibitors to see and three nights in Las Vegas, by the time our wheels touch down on the tarmac back home late Friday night, we're going to need a nap.