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ASA Insider is the monthly e-newsletter from the American Sportfishing Association. Please scroll down for the complete document. Use the links in the right hand navigation under the specific topic area to access additional information.

For more information contact Communications Director Mary Jane Williamson, (703) 519-9691, x227.

Industry and Association News

  • ASA Appoints New Government Affairs Vice President
  • American Sportfishing Association March Board Meeting
  • Our Condolences to the David Hall Family
  • ICAST is a Member of the “Fastest 50 Class of 2014”
  • A New National Campaign Asks Anglers to Pledge to Pitch It
  • FishAmerica Foundation Receives $125,000 Donation
  • RBFF to Expand Its Vamos A Pescar Campaign
  • The 2015 Top 100 Family-Friendly Spots for Fishing and Boating
  • ASA Supports the American Boating Congress
  • Southwick Omnibus Survey Open to ASA Members
  • TAKE ACTION – Renew Your ASA Membership

ICAST 2015 Updates

  • Thank You ICAST 2015 Sponsors
  • TAKE ACTION – ICAST 2015 Sponsorships Are Available
  • TAKE ACTION – Reserve Your Space for ICAST On the Water
  • TAKE ACTION – Register Now for ICAST 2015
  • TAKE ACTION – Reserve Your ICAST 2015 Booth Space Now
  • Opening Night Concert with Country Music’s Rising Star Easton Corbin!
  • ICAST and FLW ICAST Cup Bass Fishing Tournament
  • ICAST and Florida Sportsman Bass & Birdies Classic
  • The ICAST State of the Industry Breakfast
  • The New Product Showcase Preview Reception
  • ICAST 2015 Exhibitor Resource Center is Open
  • Experient, Inc. is the Official Housing Partner of ICAST 2015
  • Exhibitor Promo Pak is Available Online
  • Exhibitor Service Manual is Available Online
  • Post Your ICAST Press Release on ICASTfishing.org
  • Follow ICAST on Twitter and Facebook

Member Services

  • TAKE ACTION – Your Employees Can Receive the ASA Insider Newsletter
  • TAKE ACTION – Get the Wholesale Tackle Shipments Report

Recreational Fishing and Conservation Policy Updates

  • Gulf States Unveil Solution to Red Snapper Management
  • Supreme Court Upholds Florida's Net Ban
  • Biscayne National Park Fishing Closure Remains Possibility
  • Legislation Introduced to Repeal Ethanol Requirements
  • House and Senate Bills Take Aim at Asian Carp

ASA Appoints New Government Affairs Vice President

The American Sportfishing Association is pleased to announce that Scott Gudes, an acknowledged bipartisan Government Affairs expert and life-long, avid angler and boater, has joined the ASA staff as Vice President for Government Affairs. His tenure began on March 2. Scott brings 30 years of experience in the federal executive and legislative branches as well as several years of trade association policy experience to our industry. Scott will help ensure that our industry’s voice is heard as we adapt to the economic and environmental changes that are impacting recreational fishing. Scott can be reached at sgudes@asafishing.org, x222.

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American Sportfishing Association March Board Meeting

The next ASA board of directors meeting will be held March 25, at the ASA offices in Alexandria, Va. The Nominating Committee will also meet prior to the board of directors meeting. For more information, contact Board Liaison Joyce Anderson Logan, x233.

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Our Condolences to the David Hall Family

David Hall, founder and chairman of David Hall Publishing, recently passed away after a long illness. For more than 30 years, Hall published some of the most influential outdoor sports publications including Tackle Trade World and Gun Trade World. The members and staff of ASA extend our condolences to David’s family, his colleagues and friends.

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Sportfishing’s Trade Show is a Member of the “Fastest 50 Class of 2014”

ICAST has earned three top rankings on Trade Show Executive’s (TSE) annual Fastest 50 list. Each year, TSE honors the 50 fastest-growing shows in three categories: net square feet of paid exhibit space, number of exhibiting companies and total attendance. ICAST was one of only 16 trade shows that were the fastest-growing across all three categories. TSE based its recognition on each show’s 2014 numbers over the previous year. For more information, contact Trade Show Director Kenneth Andres, x231.

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ASA’s New National Campaign Asks Anglers to Pledge to Pitch It

The recreational fishing industry, through KeepAmericaFishing®, its grassroots angler advocacy campaign, is asking anglers to add their worn out soft plastic baits to their recycling list. The new Pitch It campaign was the direct result of a proposed legislative ban in Maine on the sale and use of soft plastic baits. Legislators said that baits discarded in our waterways were harming fish populations. ASA contends that, regarding soft plastic baits, what really exists is a litter problem. As the voice for the recreational fishing industry, ASA and KeepAmericaFishing developed the Pitch It campaign to address this issue, educate anglers on proper disposal methods and influence a positive change. For more information, contact KeepAmericaFishing Director Liz Ogilvie, x228.

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FishAmerica Foundation Receives $125,000 Donation

The FishAmerica Foundation (FAF) is, once again, the recipient of a generous donation from the American Snuff Company (ASC). For the second year, the company has made a generous donation to the foundation to further the foundation's mission of fisheries conservation and habitat restoration. This year, ASC selected and featured twelve habitat and restoration projects funded by the FishAmerica Foundation in communities across the U.S., along with those of another organization. Among the most viewed projects were the foundation's partnership projects with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to remove six obstructive dams throughout the Little Lehigh Watershed in Emmaus, Pa. For more information, contact FAF Grants Manager Ruth Jackson, x247.

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RBFF to Expand Its Vamos A Pescar Campaign

Following successful pilot campaigns in Florida and Texas, RBFF will increase the reach of its Vamos A Pescar™ campaign in 2015 to California, Illinois and New York. This expansion will allow RBFF to reach 68 percent of the Hispanic audience in the United States. The campaign will continue to leverage assets from the current campaign, along with optimized and refreshed creative elements. The expansion falls in line with RBFF’s original five-year plan to engage the Hispanic audience in boating and fishing.

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The 2015 Top 100 Family-Friendly Spots for Fishing and Boating

We’re helping our friends at Take Me Fishing™ with their mission to identify the 2015 Top 100 Family-Friendly Spots for Fishing and Boating, and we all need your help! The sweepstakes promotion and voting began on March 9, and will run until April 12. Encourage your staff, customers or members to vote for their favorite places to get out on the water and enter for a chance to win a family trip to Orlando, Fl., and get started fishing kits.

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ASA Supports the American Boating Congress

On May 11-13, 2015, in Washington D.C., ASA will join a broad group of co-hosts to support the American Boating Congress. This year, driven by 2014’s success, numerous industry partners have agreed to co-host ABC, joining the rallying-cry to strengthen the industry’s collective advocacy impact. Assembling from a wide variety of industry segments, these groups provide ongoing counsel and insight into what issues are of the most pressing interest to stakeholders and advocates, ensuring that ABC’s agenda will be packed with timely and relevant policy matters. Co-hosts will be attending ABC with representatives from their respective organizations, contributing to a dynamic dialogue during the event.

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Southwick Omnibus Survey Open to ASA Members

This April, Southwick Associates will be conducting its annual omnibus survey of U.S. anglers and hunters. This is an opportunity for companies to add questions to learn more about their customers or new market opportunities. ASA members receive a 15 percent discount on questions added. All results are confidential. For more information, contact Nancy Bacon at Southwick Associates, 904-277-9765.

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TAKE ACTION – Renew Your ASA Membership

Your membership in the American Sportfishing Association is crucial to helping ensure our industry’s future and we thank you for your support. ASA mailed its annual membership dues renewal invoices for FY 2015 last Fall. For more information, contact Membership Director Jill Calabria, x234.

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Thank You ICAST 2015 Sponsors

ASA would like to thank its generous members who signed on as ICAST sponsors. Our ICAST 2015 sponsors are: GoldCrocodile Bay Resort; Costa; Fishing Tackle Retailer; FLW, LLC; Florida Sportsman; and World Fishing Network. SilverIn-Fisherman; and Koppers Fishing & Tackle Corp. BronzeBeyond Coastal; Buck Knives; Chums; and Classic Fishing Products, Inc. The list is current as of March 17, 2015.

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TAKE ACTION – ICAST 2015 Sponsorships Are Available

An ICAST sponsorship is an effective way to highlight your company’s name in front of the global sportfishing community. By becoming an ICAST sponsor, your company will benefit from stand-alone recognition for your company and/or products and also help increase sales by leveraging your presence at ICAST. For more information on sponsorships, contact Trade Show Director Kenneth Andres, x231.

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TAKE ACTION – Reserve Your Space for ICAST On the Water

ICAST On the Water, presented in partnership with Fishing Tackle Retailer, is the first, annual event for ICAST exhibitors to demonstrate their products for dealers and media representatives. This event is open to ICAST and IFTD buyers and credentialed media only. It’s being held Tuesday, July 14, 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Beautiful Lake Toho, the site for this year’s ICAST On the Water, is an easy ride from the convention center area and provides plenty of space – and water – to check out gear, tackle and accessories. This is an excellent opportunity for you to demonstrate your products and network with buyers and media who are looking for those one-on-one experiences. The weigh-in for the ICAST Industry Bass Fishing Tournament, in partnership with FLW, is tied to the beginning of ICAST On the Water. A 10’ x 10’ exhibit/demonstration space is $500. ICAST exhibitors can reserve only one exhibit space. Space is limited so please reserve your booth now. For more information, contact Trade Show Director Kenneth Andres.

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TAKE ACTION – Register Now for ICAST 2015

Don’t miss the opportunity to attend the world’s largest fishing trade show! Registration is open for ICAST 2015 taking place July 14 – 17, at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla. You can register for the show and make your hotel reservations at the same time. You can register online by going to www.ICASTfishing.org and click on the Registration button. Please note that ICAST is open only to qualified members of the sportfishing trade. If you attended ICAST 2014, you should have received an email from Experient, our registration company, with your user name and password which you’ll need to start the ICAST 2015 registration process. If you did not receive this email, contact Experient at ICAST-IFTD@experient-inc.com, or call 800 424-5249 (toll free).

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TAKE ACTION – Reserve Your ICAST 2015 Booth Space Now

Booth space is going very quickly! The show floor is more than 85 percent filled. Now is the time to reserve your booth space for ICAST 2015. The ICAST 2015 exhibit space contract and floor plan are available on www.ICASTfishing.org in the Exhibitors section. Contracts and booth assignments will not be processed until a deposit is received. For more information, contact Trade Show Director Kenneth Andres, (703) 519-9691, x231.

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Opening Night Concert with Country Music’s Rising Star Easton Corbin!

WFN and ICAST are kicking up the energy level this year with a Tuesday night concert featuring country music up-and-comer, Easton Corbin! Only registered attendees and exhibitors can purchase tickets. A portion of the proceeds will go to support KeepAmericaFishing®, the sportfishing industry’s angler advocacy program. The Outdoor Channel will be broadcasting an hour-long show featuring KeepAmericaFishing including highlights from the show and the Easton Corbin concert. The concert is being held Tuesday, July 14, from 8:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. in the Valencia Room, 4th Floor, in the Orange County Convention Center. Tickets are $35 and can be purchased when you register for the trade show. In addition, VIP tickets are available for $100 per ticket.

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The ICAST and FLW ICAST Cup Bass Fishing Tournament

FLW, in partnership with ICAST, will pair professional anglers with invited media representatives and other industry professionals for a morning of product demonstrations and networking. It’s a great way for the American Sportfishing Association’s members who are exhibiting at ICAST to highlight their products. The tournament weigh-in coincides with the opening of ICAST On the Water! The event is being held Tuesday, July 14, from 6:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. on beautiful Lake Toho which is a short ride from the convention center.

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ICAST and Florida Sportsman Bass & Birdies Classic

The Bass & Birdies Classic, presented by ICAST and Florida Sportsman, is the second, annual golf tournament and fishing competition which occurs prior the day before ICAST opens. The golf is a Scramble-Best Ball format. This unique golf-and-fishing event is open to ASA members and registered ICAST attendees. A portion of the proceeds goes to support KeepAmericaFishing. The event is being held Tuesday, July 14, from 7:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. at the Shingle Creek Golf Club in Orlando. For more details contact Rick Ryals at Rick@FloridaSportsman.com.

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The ICAST State of the Industry Breakfast

The State of the Industry Breakfast is one of the most important business events for our industry. This is your opportunity to hear about the issues and decisions – mostly at the federal and state levels – that impact our ability to do business. The breakfast is being held 7:30 a.m. – 8:45 a.m. on Wednesday, July 15, in the Valencia Room, 4th Floor, in the convention center. Tickets are $40 per ticket and $400 for a table of ten. Tickets are available for purchase when you register for the show.

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The New Product Showcase Preview Reception

Only registered buyers and individuals with Media-Editorial badges are eligible to vote in the New Product Showcase preview reception, sponsored by Fishing Tackle Retailer, being held Tuesday, July 14, from 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. in the New Product Showcase in the convention center. Exhibitors are not permitted in the Showcase during the voting period. Voting begins on Tuesday, July 14, at 5:00 p.m. during the New Product Showcase Preview Reception and ends at 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, July 15. Buyers and media who vote have a chance to win one of three drawings for a $500 cash prize.

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ICAST 2015 Exhibitor Resource Center is Open

The ICAST Exhibitor Resource Center is now open on ICASTfishing.org. This section of the website contains important information that all ICAST exhibitors need in order to have a successful show experience – the Exhibitor Service Manual, New Product Showcase, the official ICAST vendor list and much, much more. The Exhibitor Resource Center is password protected, so if you haven't received an email with the 2015 password, please email ICAST@asafishing.org with your request.

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Experient, Inc. is the Official Housing Partner of ICAST 2015

Please be aware that there are a number of housing companies who may contact you and misrepresent themselves as agents for ICAST 2015 offering discounted rates at various Orlando hotels. Experient, Inc. is the only company authorized by the American Sportfishing Association and the ICAST team to make hotel reservations for ICAST 2015. ASA has negotiated with a wide selection of hotels in Orlando to obtain the best price possible at the hotels nearest to the convention center. Booking with businesses unaffiliated with ICAST makes it impossible for the ICAST team to assist you should there be a problem with your reservations. If you are contacted by another housing company trying to sell hotel rooms, please notify the ICAST/IFTD Housing Bureau Experient at ICAST-IFTDEXH@experient-inc.com.

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Exhibitor Promo Pak is Available Online

One of the best resources the ICAST team provides for its exhibitors is the Exhibitor Promo Pak, which contains many items to help you promote your presence at ICAST. The Promo Pak and other important ICAST information are available exclusively online for exhibitors. To access the Promo Pak, go to the Exhibitor Resource Center found under the Exhibitors section of www.ICASTfishing.org. If you haven’t received your access information, contact Trade Show Director Kenneth Andres, x231.

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Exhibitor Service Manual is Available Online

The Exhibitor Service Manual is the ultimate guide to exhibiting at ICAST. It contains all the details you need to ensure that you have a successful experience at the show. Shipping and set up information are included, as well as forms for ordering furnishings, carpet, electrical services and other necessities. The Exhibitor Service Manual, provided by FreemanOnline, is located in the Exhibitor Resource Center on the ICAST website under Exhibitors. In order to place your orders for show support, you must be a confirmed exhibitor in good standing. That means that your ICAST booth fees and ASA membership dues must be paid. To pay your ASA membership dues, please contact Membership Director Jill Calabria, x234.

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Post Your ICAST Press Release on ICASTfishing.org

As an added benefit of exhibiting at ICAST, ASA will post exhibitor press releases in the online Press Room to help ICAST exhibitors promoting their presence at the show. This online Press Room is a resource for both media and show attendees. Please add this opportunity to your ICAST marketing plan. Please send a link to your press release or email a Word or PDF version to Communications Director Mary Jane Williamson, x227. Content is subject to ASA verification and approval.

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Follow ICAST on Twitter and Facebook

Our Facebook and Twitter followers are growing by the day. Share your thoughts about why you attend ICAST on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/ICASTfishing and on Twitter by following us @ICASTshow.

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TAKE ACTION – Your Employees Can Receive the ASA Insider Newsletter

Did you know all your employees are eligible to receive ASA Insider, the e-newsletter exclusive to ASA members? To find out who is currently receiving this newsletter, please email Membership Director Jill Calabria. You are welcome to request this roster and update it with new staff throughout the year so everyone in your company stays current with the issues that impact the sportfishing industry.

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TAKE ACTION – Get the Wholesale Tackle Shipments Report

ASA has a service that helps member manufacturers to compare their individual business performance to industry averages. Each month, participating companies complete a short, confidential survey regarding their previous month’s shipments. No information specific to any individual company will be released. Results will report the change in the previous month’s wholesale tackle shipments compared to 12 months earlier, and year-to-date changes. Participating companies receive the results each month. For example, comparing February 2014 results to February 2013 shows that tackle sales were down 2.2 percent. Top-line results will be released to all others later after a three to six month lag. Email Rob Southwick for more information or call 904- 277-9765.

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Gulf States Unveil Solution to Red Snapper Management

In a move long awaited by the recreational fishing and boating community, the directors of the fish and wildlife agencies in Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas announced an agreement for state-based management of Gulf of Mexico red snapper. Recent years have brought increasing privatization of this public resource and decreasing recreational fishing opportunities. The announcement was greeted with strong enthusiasm from the recreational fishing and boating community, which has supported greater state control of Gulf red snapper. For more information, contact Ocean Resource Policy Director Mike Leonard, x230.

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Supreme Court Upholds Florida's Net Ban

Florida’s Supreme Court has denied a petition by the Wakulla Fishermen’s Association and upheld the state’s gill net ban that was approved as a state constitutional amendment by 72 percent of voters in 1994. The ruling puts an end to the latest challenge brought by gillnetters who won a sympathetic circuit court ruling in 2013 that allowed them to briefly reintroduce destructive gill nets into Florida waters. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, with the support of CCA Florida, challenged that initial court ruling immediately and has worked tirelessly ever since to defend the net ban to the state’s highest court. The 1994 net ban amendment has been credited with bringing about a dramatic improvement in bait and forage fish populations, along with a powerful recovery in red drum, speckled trout, snook and other species that provide the foundation for a $8.7 billion recreational industry. For more information, contact Ocean Resource Policy Director Mike Leonard, x230.

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Biscayne National Park Fishing Closure Remains Possibility

Despite strong opposition from the recreational fishing community and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the National Park Service continues to push for an unacceptable plan to close roughly 10,500 acres of Biscayne National Park’s most popular and productive shallow water reefs to recreational fishing. In 2014, park officials announced a final public comment period on a draft General Management Plan to gather input on three alternatives, 4 (marine reserve), 6 (permit system) and 7 (summer closure). ASA remains staunchly opposed to Alternative 4, and believes that Alternatives 6 and 7, with modifications, are workable options. Alongside KeepAmericaFishing, ASA is mobilizing anglers and industry members to oppose Alternative 4 before the National Park Service selects its final option. For more information, contact Ocean Resource Policy Director Mike Leonard, x230.

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Legislation Introduced to Repeal Ethanol Requirements

On February 26, Sen. Toomey (R-Pa.) along with Sens. Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Flake (R-Ariz.) introduced S. 577 – the Corn Ethanol Mandate Elimination Act of 2015. The bill would amend the Clean Air Act and lift the legislative mandate that ethanol be used as fuel. Presently, the Renewable Fuel Standard allows dangerously high levels of ethanol, such as E15, into the marketplace. Gasoline blended with more than 10 percent ethanol can cause severe damage to motors, including motorboat engines. Many automotive companies will not cover insurance claims for these damages. For more information, contact Policy Fellow Melanie Sturm, x255.

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House and Senate Bills Take Aim at Asian Carp

The Defending Our Great Lakes Act, new legislation introduced by Sen. Stabenow (D-Mich.) and Rep. Miller (D-Mich.), focuses on combatting invasive species spread, specifically Asian carp. The companion bills contain short- and long-term solutions to invasive species movement between the Great Lakes and Mississippi River watersheds through canals in the Chicago area. It directs the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to work with other authorities to take immediate steps to control invasive species using chemical and physical barriers. The Great Lakes region boasts a strong recreational fishery, and ASA supports the legislation to stave off economic and environmental consequences of aquatic invaders. For more information, contact Ocean Resource Policy Director Mike Leonard, x230.

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