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Fort Worth, Lake Ray Roberts to host first Bassmaster Classic

Posted June 4, 2020

the Bassmaster celebratory stage filled with confetti
The Bassmaster Classic has been called the Super Bowl of Professional Bass Fishing.

For just the third time in the event’s storied history, the 2021 Academy Sports + Outdoors Bassmaster Classic is coming to Texas. The eyes of Texas — and the world — will be watching March 19-21, 2021, as the Super Bowl of Professional Bass Fishing heads to Fort Worth with fishing taking place at Lake Ray Roberts in nearby Denton.

Downtown Fort Worth will be on full display during the event, hosted by the Fort Worth Sports Commission and Visit Fort Worth. Outdoors enthusiasts can browse at the Bassmaster Classic Outdoors Expo at the Will Rogers Memorial Center before taking in daily weigh-in festivities at nearby Dickies Arena.

Recent Classics held in Birmingham, Ala., and Knoxville, Tenn., have drawn record-breaking crowds of more than 120,000 fans to Classic Week events, including the Bassmaster Classic Outdoors Expo. The Outdoors Expo has grown into the largest consumer fishing show in the country, with 200 exhibitors from around the world selling a variety of merchandise for fishing, hunting, camping and more.

“This is the Super Bowl of Bass Fishing and it will be an incredible privilege to welcome anglers, their families and fans from around the country to Fort Worth. This championship will bring over 70,000 visitors with an expected $20 million in direct spending including in our hotels, restaurants, retail, attractions and more,” said Jason Sands, director of the Fort Worth Sports Commission. “The Fort Worth Sports Commission will be monitoring event protocol and safety procedures as they evolve over the next several months to ensure Fort Worth is ready to host this prestigious tournament next spring.”

According to numbers released by the Greater Birmingham Convention & Visitors Bureau, the Academy Sports + Outdoors Bassmaster Classic provided a direct economic impact of $20.8 million and an indirect boost in business sales of $15.1 million. This total of $35.9 million for the 2020 event is an increase over the 2019 Bassmaster Classic in Knoxville, Tenn., which generated a total economic impact of $32.2 million, according to Visit Knoxville.

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