More than 850 anglers representing 27 states have registered for the second annual U.S. Bowfishing Championship making this event the largest bowfishing tournament ever.
The May 2-4 event, which is being held at Table Rock and Bull Shoals lakes in the Ozarks, will feature outdoor celebrities, live entertainment, large cash and prizes, and will benefit the environment, too.
Outdoor celebrities Lee and Tiffany Lakosky of Outdoor Channel’s “The Crush,” Travis “T-Bone” Turner, co-host of “Michael Waddell’s Bone Collector,” and Brian Quaca, host of Sportsman Channel’s, “Pigman: The Series” are scheduled to attend. All will make special appearances on stage Saturday, May 3 at the new Bass Pro Shops Outdoor Academy, 1901 S. Hwy 86, Ridgedale, Mo.
Cash and prizes totaling more than $45,000 will be given away. Participants can compete for a Tracker 1860 Bowfishing Boat (an $18,995 retail value), new bows, a big fish package worth $5,000, and $10,000 in cash for the champs. Competitors will also vie for a state record jackpot. Anyone who takes a new state record longnose gar or common carp during tournament hours wins $10,000.
All preregistered anglers also will have the opportunity to win the Tracker Grizzly 1860 CC Sportsman boat. This exclusive multi-purpose Tracker boat comes with a 40 ELPT FourStroke outboard Mercury motor and has a retail value of $18,995.
Live Music and More
The action kicks off Saturday, May 3 beginning at 2 p.m. at the Bass Pro Shops Outdoor Academy as anglers prepare to launch their boats.
At 3 p.m. there will be live music and entertainment; booths featuring merchandise, activities and information; and lots of giveaways. There are also special activities for kids such as the practice bowfishing tank, inflatable BB gun range, and a casting competition. The King of Bucks mobile exhibit featuring 25 world-record whitetail mounts will be on display.
A variety of food including hot dogs, burgers, and barbecue will be available for purchase.
The weigh-in will be on Sunday, May 4, at 7 a.m. at the Bass Pro Shops Outdoor Academy.
Tournament Supports a Great Cause
Bowfishing is not only fun, it’s good for lakes and reservoirs. Bowfishing helps control rough fish and invasive species such as Asian carp that can degrade water quality and ruin gamefish habitat.
The U. S. Open Bowfishing Championship will do more than improve the fishery and boost local economies. Proceeds will be donated to the James River Basin Partnership to fund a cleanup effort. The James River Basin Partnership is a grassroots, nonprofit, organization working to improve and protect the water quality of the springs, streams, rivers, and lakes in southwest Missouri’s James River Watershed.
For more information and rules and regulations, visit http://www.basspro.com/usopen. Registration will be available at the tournament site on Friday, May 2, between 4 p.m.-6 p.m. However, to be eligible to win the boat and bow, team captains must pre-register at least 72 hours prior to the event, and they must be present Sunday morning, May 4, at the fish weigh-in to win.
Sponsors of the 2014 U.S. Open Bowfishing Championship include Bass Pro Shops, Tracker Boats, Big Cedar Lodge, Under Armour, Oakley, GoPro, Realtree, BowfishingZone.com, NDesigns, Streamlight,Rigid Industries, Coca-Cola, American Airboats, Elite Boats, AMS Bowfishing, Muzzy Products, Cajun, PSE Archery, and Rinehart Targets.