Lake Lanier is playing host to a T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League regional tournament this week.
It’s one of six events associated with FLW that the Gainesville Convention & Visitors Bureau is hosting. The most high-profile of those tournaments will be an FLW Tour stop set for March 8-11.
FLW Bass Fishing League regional tournament
Takeoff: 7:30 a.m. each day at Laurel Park, 3100 Old Cleveland Highway, Gainesville
Weigh-in: 3:30 p.m. Thursday and Friday at Laurel Park; 4:30 p.m. Saturday at Bass Pro Shops, 5900 Sugarloaf Parkway, Lawrenceville
More than 400 anglers — 50 boaters and 50 co-anglers each from the
BFL’s Gator, Savannah River, Shenandoah and South Carolina divisions — will
compete in the event, which runs from Thursday through Saturday.
The top boater will win a new Ranger Z518C with a Evinrude outboard and a $20,000 check.The top six boaters and co-anglers at each of six regional tournaments will advance to the 2018 BFL All-American, set for May 31-June 2 on Cross Lake in Shreveport, La.
Laurel Park, located at 3100 Old Cleveland Highway in Gainesville, will be the takeoff point for competitors, with action beginning at 7:30 a.m. each day. Weigh-ins are set for 3 p.m. Thursday and Friday at the park. Saturday’s final weigh-in is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. at Bass Pro Shops at 5900 Sugarloaf Parkway in Lawrenceville. Takeoffs and weigh-ins are free and open to the public.
Regina Dyer, manager of Gainesville Convention & Visitors Bureau, said 865 room nights have been booked and 198 days booked at campgrounds.
Between hotel stays and restaurant spending, Dyer said Gainesville officials expect $150,000 to $200,000 of economic impact from the tournament.
“Sponsorships are negotiated privately with each tournament between the host and organization, but they range anywhere from $1,500 to $10,000 or more depending on the size of the tournament,” Dyer wrote in an email. “We do utilize our funding from hotel/motel taxes, sponsorships and also we offset a lot of expenses with in kind resources that we can offer including staff assistance with lodging, providing things such as bleachers or seating at weigh-ins, providing the location for meetings and other necessary needs to hold a large-scale tournament.”