The number of manufacturers and retailers in the fishing and boating industries contributing to COVID-19 relief efforts continues to grow. Bass Pro Shops, West Marine, and Brunswick (including Mercury outboards) all announced donations to healthcare providers and other care-providers in the last weeks. Pure Fishing, representing PENN, Berkley, Abu Garcia and Ugly Stik, also unveiled a social-distance appropriate “Fish Through It” campaign, with how-to content and daily challenges.
Bass Pro Shops: Bass Pro Shops founder Johnny Morris is personally donating one million FDA-approved ASTM Level 1 Procedure Face Masks to healthcare workers and first responders working on the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis across the United States. The logistics of the donation have been in the works since in the onset of the crisis. Morris worked with Bass Pro Shops partner Rusty Sellars, CEO of True Timber, to source the masks through his apparel and fabric suppliers.
Convoy of Hope is utilizing its national network of partners and volunteers to identify appropriate local hospitals and medical facilities, and help distribute the masks based on area needs and demands. The donation will provide thousands of hard-to-find masks to every local community with a Bass Pro Shops or Cabela’s store, boat center, distribution center, and White River Marine Group manufacturing facility – over 200 communities in total. Each community will receive thousands of face masks for area healthcare providers.
West Marine: In an effort to support and help protect its local community, West Marine Fort Lauderdale donated 2,500 pairs of latex gloves to Broward Health Medical Center in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
“West Marine as a whole has always been committed to the communities we’re a part of, and here at West Marine Fort Lauderdale we wanted to give back to the medical professionals on our front lines,” said Peter Avlogitos, store manager of West Marine Fort Lauderdale. “In times like this, we’re all in it together.”
“We could not be prouder of this effort by our Fort Lauderdale team. In the days ahead of us, we hope to find other opportunities to give back in communities across the country,” said Ken Siepel, CEO of West Marine.
Brunswick Corporation: The Brunswick Private Foundation recently made a $50,000 donation to the Red Cross and Brunswick employees around the world are making personal donations that will also be matched by the company. In addition, the Private Foundation donated $10,000 to the Salvation Army Metropolitan Division.
Some of the many contributions from Brunswick businesses:
The Brunswick Boat Group: Donated 15,000 masks to first responders in the communities around the US in which it operates boat building facilities.
Mercury Marine: Donated more than 11,000 masks to local hospitals and emergency responders near its headquarters in Fond Du Lac, Wisc.
Marinco, a Power Products Brand part of the Advanced Systems Group: Is producing electrical equipment used in mobile hospitals and temporary emergency treatment centers such as those recently established in New York.
Whale: Brunswick’s parts and accessories company in Northern Ireland has rapidly accelerated production of pumps that power hand sanitizer stations and will ship over 120,000 of these critical systems around the world over the next few months.
Pure Fishing: Iconic fishing brands Abu Garcia®, Berkley®, PENN® and Ugly Stik® are joining forces for the “Fish Through It” campaign to remind families of the joys of fishing — a sport normally about human connection which is now valued for its ability to create “social distancing” in the outdoors. From tips and techniques, to reminding families why fishing is always a fun pursuit, this campaign is designed to help anglers of all ages and skill levels to make the most of self-isolation and stay at home directives.
The “Fish Through It” campaign was created to inspire all anglers to stay connected to their love of fishing and the fishing community, even if their ability to get on the water is hampered or even eliminated by the restrictions in place in the fight against COVID-19.
For those whose states or municipalities have issued shelter-in-place orders, the partners in the “Fish Through It” campaign will provide interesting fishing content which will enhance fishing skills that can be deployed when we can all safely and responsibly return to the water. Through their respective social media channels and landing pages on the websites for Abu Garcia, Berkley and PENN, the brands are serving up interesting and timely content. Each brand is also putting its own spin on the idea with unique content geared toward their respective community.