Riding the Bass Boom

How the popular game fish saved the boat business and became a hot lure for economic development

The line waiting to enter the Hot Springs (Ark.) Convention Center was already down the block at 9:30 a.m., even though the doors wouldn't open for another half hour. The folks who turned out on this swampy summer morning were a consumer marketer's dream: young couples with two or three children squirming like fish out of water. They were there for the bass. Largemouth bass, that is, and all things bass related, from $50,000 bass boats to $2 lures, bass rods, bass reels, bass videos, bass T shirts. Also Castrol Motor Oil, Kellogg's Frosted Flakes, Snickers bars, Land O Lakes butter,...

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