Bass Fishing Hall of Fame 2020 cancelled due to COVID-19
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One of the most eagerly-awaited events on the bass fishing calendar in the US has been cancelled because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Bass Fishing Hall of Fame (BFHOF) 2020 Induction Banquet, scheduled for September 20th, in Springfield, Missouri, will not go ahead, John Mazurkiewicz, Chairman of the Hall of Fame Board, announced this week.
“The rapid spread of the contagious virus in recent weeks convinced our Board of Directors to cancel this year’s event until next year,” said Mazurkiewicz. “It is the right decision, but one we regret having to make because recent induction dinners have been extremely well attended and it has quickly become one of the highlight events of the year for many in our industry.”
Scheduled to be inducted this Fall were former Bassmaster Classic Champions, Jay Yelas, and the late Bryan Kerchal, also the late lure designer, James Heddon, fishing educator Ron Lindner and veteran outdoor journalist Steve Bowman.
“We do not believe it would be possible to hosts hundreds of attendees – or more importantly our inductees and their families – in a banquet setting without risking the spread of this awful virus, and it would not be fair to these outstanding individuals to induct them in front of a limited audience,” Mazurkiewicz said, adding that joint induction ceremonies will be held for 2020 and 2021 inductees.
“While our annual banquet will not be held this Fall, we’ll continue with our popular auction online later this year, giving bass anglers and fans opportunities to bid for one-of-a-kind fishing items, premium tackle and bucket-list fishing trips,” said Hall of Fame Vice President Tim Carini. “The annual Hall of Fame auction is our main fundraising event that enables us to fulfill our mission of celebrating, promoting and preserving the sport of bass fishing.”
Some of the money raised is used to fund important conservation projects to benefit freshwater fisheries and other aquatic resources. Recipients of the Hall’s 2020 grants, which were to be awarded at the September banquet, will be announced later this summer.