The Arkansas Ford Dealers Big Bass Bonanza has grown in numbers during each of the past five years, and for the first time will grow in days in 2005.
One of the country's largest amateur big bass tournaments will grow even larger in its sixth season, expanding to three days of fishing on the Arkansas River with prize money expected to exceed more than $300,000.
An amateur angler will be $100,000 richer when he lands the largest bass June 24-26 on the Arkansas River. Approximately 3,000 fishermen are expected to compete in the three-day event, which brought in a record 2,888 anglers from 23 states last year.
The tournament will begin at 6 a.m. sharp on all three days, with the first hourly weigh-in at 8 a.m. and subsequent weigh-ins at the top of each hour until the final 1 p.m. weigh-in.
Produced by the Arkansas Hospitality Association with support from the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, the contest spans 300 miles of eligible fishing from Fort Smith to Dumas -- nearly the whole length of the Arkansas River within the state's borders.
As in previous years, the river will be divided into five fishing pools, and each pool will have one weigh-in site.
The five weigh-in sites are: Clear Creek Park, Fort Smith; Dardanelle State Park, Russellville side; Alltel Ramp, North Little Rock; Regional Park, Pine Bluff; and Pendleton Bridge, east of Dumas.
Fishermen can choose to fish any of the five pools and can fish a different pool each day. However, all fish must be weighed in the pool in which they were caught. Eligible fish species include largemouth, smallmouth and Kentucky spotted bass (black bass).
For more information, contact the Arkansas Hospitality Association at 501-376-2323 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Online registration is also available at www.fordbigbass.com.