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Bassmaster Classic Reports Near-Record Attendance For Tulsa Event

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TULSA, Oklahoma -

The 2013 Bassmaster Classic was officially a big success.

The championship bass fishing tournament at Grand Lake reeled in the second highest attendance in the competition's 43-year history.

B.A.S.S. said the various venues that held the Classic reported a total attendance of 106,850, including 42,593 during the three daily weigh-ins at the BOK Center. The downtown arena even reached maximum capacity on Saturday and Sunday.

And at the Convention Center, more than 54,000 attended the Classic Outdoor Expo, over the course of the weekend.

2/25/2013 Related Story: Organizers Say Bassmaster Classic Could Return To Tulsa

All of that was in spite of less than ideal weather conditions.

"We were elated with the turnout from Tulsa and nearby communities for the world championship — as well as the thousands who traveled to see the Classic from other states," said B.A.S.S. CEO Bruce Akin. "This was the second highest attendance in our history, and I am confident attendance would have been even better had weather-related travel conditions not been so challenging just before the event got underway."

The chair of the local organizing committee, Jeff Stava, said the event was "hugely successful," and said he and others on the committee look forward to seeing what impact the Classic had on the local economy.

The director of site selection for B.A.S.S. said previous Classics with lower attendance generated as much as $24 million for the host cities.

B.A.S.S. said 548 bass were caught and every single one of them were alive and well when they were released back into Grand Lake. Three Oklahomans competed in the Classic, but it was Cliff Pace who took the $500,000 grand prize back to Mississippi.

Birmingham, Alabama is hosting next year's Classic.

Special Coverage: 2013 Bassmaster Classic

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