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Bass Pro Shops Sportsman’s Center in Port St. Lucie salutes area’s diverse landscapes
October 7, 2013

Bass Pro Shops Sportsman's Center

New outdoors store celebrates the best of south Florida


Bass Pro Shops Sportsman’s Center in Port St. Lucie salutes
area’s diverse landscapes


PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla.  - Port St. Lucie, which is located in the heart of Florida’s treasure coast, is famous for its outdoor recreational opportunities thanks to its 21 miles of beaches and more than 10,000 acres of parks and preserves. Bass Pro Shops’ Sportsman’s Center in Port St. Lucie, which opens Oct. 23, will outfit those who enjoy Florida’s natural resources in a store that perfectly reflects the Sunshine State’s landscapes and lifestyles.


The new 87,000-square-foot Port St. Lucie Bass Pro Shops Sportsman’s Center, located at 2250 Gatlin Boulevard, is a tribute to south Florida, and it offers something for everyone who enjoys the outdoors, whether it’s camping, fishing, hunting, boating, and more.  It is scheduled to open Wednesday evening, Oct. 23, after a ribbon-cutting ceremony that begins at 6 p.m.


Debbie Waterman and Peggy Stephen proudly display their triple tail catch, 1958The store’s imagery, murals, and displays reflect the region’s varying geography, wildlife and waterfowl.  From palmetto and pine forests to mangrove-lined estuaries; saltwater marshes to unspoiled beaches; from deer and hogs, bobcats and turkeys, ducks and cranes, ibis and heron—all find their place inside the store.


Bass Pro Shops – Store, Museum, Art Gallery, Entertainment and More
Bass Pro Shops’ uniquely designed, award-winning stores are often considered to be part museum, art gallery, antique store and aquarium, and centers for conservation education and fun. They also offer the area’s largest selection of quality outdoor gear as well as a staff of dedicated professionals who promote the outdoor lifestyle and live it as well.  In fact, Bass Pro Shops has been voted best in delivering service excellence two years in a row by J.D. Power and Associates.


Using many area artifacts, antiques, period pictures, state record wildlife mounts and memorabilia, the store becomes a living museum of the region and its hunting, fishing, camping and other outdoor legacies. 


Learn About Bass Pro Shops Dedication to Conservation
Since the beginning, Bass Pro Shops’ Founder Johnny Morris has been dedicated to inspiring people, especially youth and families, to love, enjoy and conserve the great outdoors. That commitment, demonstrated over the course of several decades, is a big reason why Bass Pro Shops is known as the outdoor industry’s corporate conservation leader. Bass Pro Shops has partnered with and supports the efforts of many organizations that work to conserve and manage the nation’s natural resources. The company’s key conservation initiatives include fish and wildlife habitat improvements, conservation and outdoor skills education, improving water quality and the quality of our lakes and springs, and conservation advocacy.


The Conservation Partner Wall, which is located near the checkouts at the Port St. Lucie Sportsman’s Center, reflects that commitment to conservation with a display showcasing the logos of national conservation groups that Bass Pro Shops partners with. 


“The people of our company believe very strongly that the future of our industry, the sports we serve, and the sports we personally enjoy are absolutely more dependent upon how we manage our natural resources than anything else,” said Bass Pro Shops founder Johnny Morris.  “It is far more important than any catalog we mail, any new store we open, or any new product our vendor creates.” 


Decorating With Nature in Mind
Hand-painted murals wrap the store’s interior and depict familiar scenes of the region.  One gets the sense of traveling through south Florida’s landscape as the murals transport the viewer through a series of panoramic vistas—all beautifully replicated with the stroke of an artist’s brush. Through the use of special lighting techniques, the murals take on a living, breathing quality. They are unique in the fact that what starts out many times as a simple painting extends into an actual fish or wildlife mount or some other property creating a 3D effect.  In addition, vintage photos and antique gear highlight the area’s original sportsmen and women.  


• A wall in the camping department depicts a wooded shoreline along Lake Okeechobee. 
• Sunlight dances amidst the pines and palmetto in a forest preserve in a mural displayed in the hunting department. 
• Another mural in the fishing department features the ecosystem of a mangrove-lined estuary that transitions offshore into the deep blue of the Atlantic.


Reef fish appear to swim around an old Spanish shipwreck in a display in the marine department. 


A 13,000-gallon saltwater aquarium is a focal point of the store and features a backdrop of men fishing from a boat in the bay.  On the bank, mangrove outcroppings provide fish structure and shelter.  The aquarium will be stocked with more than 150 fish native to the area such as bonefish, grouper, pompano, permit, snook, crevalle jack, yellowtail snapper and more.


Wildlife Exhibits Showcase South Florida Species
Museum quality wildlife exhibits and dioramas are seen throughout the store.  At any moment visitors could expect to come upon a bed of resting deer, wild hogs, black bear, Osceola turkeys being scattered by a bobcat, or an alligator slipping into a marsh.


The waterfowl of south Florida are represented as well in exhibits displaying mallards, pintails, scaup and fulvous whistling-duck.  Frigate, heron, white egret and roseate spoonbill are also featured.


Bass Pro Shops’ dedication to detail is evident wherever visitors look as artisans work to create a visual style unique to that store, including handcrafted ornate iron railings, sconces and more.  


The Merchandise Matches Local Shoppers’ Needs
But the attention to detail doesn’t stop with store design and imagery elements.  The same consideration is given to merchandise selection.  Visitors will have the area’s largest array of freshwater and saltwater rods, reels and fishing accessories to choose from - all specially selected for the area.


The White River Fly Shop, featuring antique and collectible fly fishing memorabilia, has a vast selection of the latest in fly fishing gear.  Experts will continue the art of hand-tying flies on site and assist customers in making the perfect selection.


In the hunting department, customers will find an equally impressive array of hunting clothing and gear while the archery department offers a bow set-up shop.


More than a hunting and fishing store, visitors also will find items perfect for camping, hiking, outdoor cooking, bird watching or whatever their outdoor pleasures may be. A gift and nature center offers a variety of items such as:


• Artwork
• Lamps
• Bird feeders
• Furniture
• Home decorating items
• Gifts for the holidays
• Cooking accessories such as cookbooks, spices, grills, and jerky making items.


A wide selection of men’s and women’s footwear and apparel, featuring popular brands including Columbia, World Wide Sportsman and RedHead, are also available.


The marine and boat center displays a full range of boats from Tracker Marine, the world’s largest manufacturer of fishing boats.  From big water boats to small fishing boats, canoeing and even kayaking, customers will find exactly what they need to have fun on the water with selections from Tracker, Nitro, Tahoe, Sun Tracker, Mako and more.  An on-site, state-of-the-art boat service center with three service bays also will be available for customers’ convenience for boat rigging as well as a full-time master service technician. In addition, Bass Pro Shops is the nation’s leading Arctic Cat® dealer.


Bass Pro Shops Sportsman’s Center has hired 250 associates from the Port St. Lucie area. In addition, the store will offer free outdoor skills workshops for adults, kids and families that will help maximize outdoor fun by teaching new skills and improving existing ones.


A special Evening for Conservation to help benefit area conservation groups will take place the night before the official grand opening.  This exciting, celebrity-packed event is free and open to the public. Information regarding this event will be available soon.  Click here for more information regarding the Port St. Lucie Bass Pro Shops Sportsman’s Center .


*Photos courtesy of the State Archives of Florida.


Suggested captions:  Image 1: Debbie Waterman and Peggy Stephen proudly display their triple tail catch, 1958. Image 2: Boy with his dog and deer--Ocala National Forest, Florida, 1948.


About Bass Pro Shops®
Bass Pro Shops®, which specializes in outdoor fun, operates 78 retail stores and Tracker Marine Centers across America and Canada that are visited by more than 116 million people every year. Bass Pro Shops’ stores, many of which feature restaurants, offer hunting, fishing, camping and other outdoor gear while their catalogs and website serve shoppers throughout the world. The company’s Tracker Marine Group® (, which has produced the number one selling brand of fishing boats for more than 35 years, manufactures and sells a variety of boats for fishing and cruising. Family fun is on tap at Bass Pro Shops’ resort Big Cedar Lodge® ( , voted number six by Travel + Leisure Magazine as World's Best Hotels for Families. For more information, visit  To request a free catalog, call 1-800-BASS PRO.  Follow us on Facebook at


Contact:  Katie Mitchell, Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Marine, Communications Manager (417-873-5618)