Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's

Johnny Morris, Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s donating more than 50,000 rods and reels nationwide in challenge to get more kids fishing

Gone Fishing event invites families to connect with the outdoors with free in-store fishing weekends, donations to youth non-profit organizations and new Johnny Morris Bass Pro Shops Kids’ Braggin’ Board

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Johnny Morris, legendary angler, noted conservationist and founder of Bass Pro Shops, from his heart says “Take a kid fishin’, you’ll be happy you did!” and is challenging families everywhere to get outside and enjoy the wonders of fishing and the great outdoors this summer with the Gone Fishing event. To kick off the event, Johnny, Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s are donating more than 50,000 rods and reels to not-for-profit partners that help kids of all backgrounds connect to the great outdoors.

Noted conservationist and Bass Pro Shops founder Johnny Morris fishing with his son, and best fishin’ buddy, John Paul.

The ninth annual Gone Fishing event activities include gear donations, dozens of nonprofit partnerships and a variety of free in-store fishing and casting activities at Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s locations on the weekends of June 8-9 and June 15-16. Since the program’s inception in 2015, Johnny, Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s have donated nearly 450,000 rods and reels to youth-focused nonprofit organizations across North America.

“Some of my happiest memories are times spent with family and friends fishing and enjoying the great outdoors,” said Johnny, who spent his summers as a young boy fishing with his family on the beautiful waters of the Missouri Ozarks. “Gone Fishing Event is an opportunity to help lots of kids discover the joy of fishing and inspire more families to get out and enjoy nature.”

Show off your catch on Johnny Morris’ Bass Pro Shops Kids’ Braggin’ Board – New for 2024

Share your kids’ favorite fishin’ photos for a chance to be featured on our exciting new Braggin’ Board. Show off their catch and it will be included for the world to see. It’s a great way to keep a record of a memorable day on the water and share with family, friends and loved ones that great catch that didn’t get away.

For more details, visit

Join us for free family activities, giveaways to spread the joy of fishing

Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s locations* across the U.S. will be hosting free activities and special giveaways during Gone Fishing, designed for anglers of all ages and experience levels. Family-friendly events hosted on the weekends of June 8-9 and June 15-16 include:

  • Free Catch-And-Release Ponds: Kids can experience the excitement of fishing at in-store catch-and-release ponds and earn a free “O-Fish-Ally an Angler” photo certificate to celebrate their achievement (11 a.m. – 3 p.m. local time on both weekends).
  • Free Fishing Logs and Fish Pens: To help kids keep a record of their fishing adventures.

For more information about Gone Fishing, visit

Links to download photos and broadcast-quality video.

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About Bass Pro Shops
Bass Pro Shops is North America’s premier outdoor and conservation company. Founded in 1972 when avid young angler Johnny Morris began selling tackle out of his father’s liquor store in Springfield, Missouri, today the company provides customers with unmatched offerings spanning premier destination retail, outdoor equipment manufacturing, world-class resort destinations and more. In 2017 Bass Pro Shops united with Cabela’s to create a “best-of-the-best” experience with superior products, dynamic locations and outstanding customer service. Bass Pro Shops also operates White River Marine Group, offering an unsurpassed collection of industry-leading boat brands, and Big Cedar Lodge, America’s Premier Wilderness Resort. Under the visionary conservation leadership of Johnny Morris, Bass Pro Shops is a national leader in protecting habitat and introducing families to the outdoors and has been named by Newsweek as “America’s Most Trusted Retailer for Outdoor Gear.”

Media Contact:
Bass Pro Communications