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Bass Pro Shops founder Johnny Morris welcomes visitors to the World's Fishing Fair during a kickoff ceremony last month.
SBJ file
Bass Pro Shops founder Johnny Morris welcomes visitors to the World's Fishing Fair during a kickoff ceremony last month.

Bass Pro donates $1.5M to conservation via World's Fishing Fair proceeds

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Bass Pro Shops announced a $1.5 million conservation donation funded by partial proceeds from the recent World's Fishing Fair in Springfield.

The Springfield-based outdoor retailer is donating 100% of all ticket sales, up from an initial pledge of 50%, according to a news release. The donation also represents 100% of proceeds from Concerts for Conservation events held during the fair.

“I have never felt more proud of our Bass Pro team, our vendors and our conservation partners,” founder Johnny Morris said in the release. "Thanks to this collective effort, and with the support of our generous customers and the city of Springfield, we are able to make this donation that will help further crucial conservation efforts for years to come."

The release did not detail which specific conservation causes the funding is going toward, and a spokesperson could not be reached immediately for comment by deadline.

Bass Pro officials say "several hundred thousand" people visited Springfield for the March 30-April 3 World's Fishing Fair at the company's flagship store in the Queen City. Estimates prior to the event put expected attendance at 500,000.

The event drew visitors to Springfield from 47 states and Canada, according to the release. The event additionally was expected to generate an $80 million economic impact overall.

The World's Fishing Fair, which also celebrated Bass Pro's 50th anniversary, featured concerts by Hank Williams Jr., Dierks Bentley and other country music acts, over 200 exhibits from some 150 manufacturers and more than $10 million worth of tackle for sale.

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