Sunday, August 15, 1999

Bass Pro Shops bring outdoors into the store

The Cincinnati Enquirer

        For the avid sports enthusiast, it isn't so much a superstore as it is a river-wide swath of heaven.

        Privately owned Bass Pro Shops, founded by fisherman and conservationist John Morris as a catalog retailer in 1971, has grown to include specialty stores, Tracker Marine boat manufacturing and the expanding line of Outdoor World “megastores.”

        Bass Pro's 10th Outdoor World store will open at Forest Fair Mall in 2000. The 144,000-square-foot store will operate on two stories in the former Parisian.

        “People in the Cincinnati area love to fish, boat, hunt, camp and enjoy the outdoors,” said Martin Mac Donald, Bass Pro spokesman. “We like the location. We like the development. We like the ease of access.”

        Ohio ranked eighth in the nation in 1997 for the number of hunting licenses and permits sold, and 11th in the nation for fishing, according to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. Combined, almost 2.4 million permits, licenses, tags and stamps were issued in the state.

        The Forest Fair store will feature an environment that “brings the outdoors indoors.”

        Expect a trout stream, waterfall and massive log and rock work, an indoor archery range, a golf driving range and putting green, a children's laser arcade and rod and reel repair.

        Bass Pro also conducts educational seminars and sporting events, such as a fall hunting classic and camping week.

        The retailers expect to draw shoppers from Pennsylvania, Indiana, Kentucky, West Virginia and parts of Michigan.

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