Pennsylvania Welcomes World to Pittsburgh for Bassmaster Classic
Pennsylvania has long been recognized as offering some world-class fishing opportunities, so it’s only fitting that the Keystone State this week hosts 47 top professional anglers seeking competitive bass fishing’s top honors-- the 35th CITGO Bassmaster Classic July 29 - 31.
“We’re excited to host this prestigious event in Pennsylvania,” said Fish and Boat Commission Executive Director Dr. Douglas Austen. “For three days, anglers everywhere will be focused on the Commonwealth and the tremendous recreational fishing available here. With 12 hours of national television exposure, viewers all across the country will soon learn what we’ve known for quite some time: Pittsburgh is a vibrant, modern city whose rivers and fisheries are an integral part of the region.”
“The selection of Pittsburgh as the site for the 2005 Citgo Bassmaster Classic Tournament is a tribute to the progress government, industry and local watershed groups have made in cleaning up our area waterways,” said Mike Sherman, DEP Deputy Secretary for Field Operations. “With their revival comes an increase in both recreational and economic development opportunities and an improved quality of life in Western Pennsylvania.
“We have seen great improvements in the quality of water in our waterways.” Sherman said. “Fifty years ago, only a handful of fish were alive in our rivers. Now we see more than 50 different species thriving.”
The three-day tournament and its $200,000 top prize is the highlight of the week, but there are more events surrounding it.
There's a tackle and outdoors gear consumer show, the Classic ESPN Outdoors Expo presented at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Thursday through Sunday. Representatives of the Fish and Boat Commission will be on hand throughout those events to answer questions about fishing and boating in Pennsylvania.
Fishing fans can also meet the competing professional anglers at the 7 a.m. launch each morning at Point State Park and the daily weigh-ins at Mellon Arena, beginning at 2:45 p.m. For those unable to make it to Pittsburgh, ESPN and ESPN2 will provide extensive coverage of the tournament.
Websites: Pros Take on Three Rivers Friday
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