Here's the press release from Bass Pro Shops:
Bass Pro Shops, an outdoor retailer specializing in hunting, fishing, camping and other related outdoor gear, is proud to announce plans for a new store in Sarasota County, Florida. The Bass Pro Shops retail attraction will be located on the northeast quadrant of Interstate 75 and Fruitville Road. It will be the primary anchor for the new 260,000-square-foot, planned mixed-use Fruitville Commons development. The new 80,000-square-foot Bass Pro Shops Outpost store is slated to open in 2016.Bass Pro Shops to open new Outpost store in Sarasota, Florida
Having owned the property for more than 30 years, we are extremely excited that Bass Pro Shops has chosen our site for the home of their latest complex. The concept of a Bass Pro Shops Outpost store is exactly what was envisioned when the mixed-use Fruitville Initiative was conceived, said David Walters, trustee of the Walters Trust. Bass Pro Shops record of conservation and care for the environment are uniquely suited to leverage the Celery Fields park and recreation area that Sarasota County has created. We look forward to working with Sarasota County, Johnny Morris and the Bass Pro Shops team in making this a special and unique place that all of Sarasota can be proud of.
This will be the companys 14th store in Florida as they currently operate nine stores in the state; while new locations have been announced in Tampa, Daytona, Jacksonville, and Gainesville.
Having the opportunity to build a super outdoor store directly fronting I-75 will allow us to bring Bass Pro Shops low prices and famous friendly, expert service to serve the many sportsmen, women as well as the visitors to this area each year, said Johnny Morris, founder of Bass Pro Shops. It is an honor to be part of an exciting development such as Fruitville Commons and the history-rich Sarasota community. Our new Bass Pro Shops Outpost retail attraction will be a tribute to the great sporting tradition and heritage of the region and a celebration of the sporting men and women of Florida.
The Bass Pro Shops Sarasota Outpost store will hire approximately 200 full- and part-time associates from the area.
"We are excited that Bass Pro Shops has officially announced their interest in coming to Sarasota County. They've built their brand by working with communities to create unique customer experiences. We look forward to hearing more about their plans," said Tom Harmer, administrator for Sarasota County.
Sarasota is known for its award-winning beaches, exotic botanical gardens, superb golf courses, and sportfishing for tarpon and giant gar. It was the former winter home for the Ringling Brothers Circus, and is currently the spring training ground for the Baltimore Orioles. The area is renowned for its vast cultural amenities and the many architects, fine artists, performing arts, and writers who have lived and worked in the area.
Situated on the southwestern coast of Florida, Sarasota is south of the Tampa Bay area and north of Fort Myers. Nicknamed Paradise, Sarasotas humid, subtropical climate makes it ideally suited for botanical gardens such as Marie Selbys Botanical Gardens and Sarasotas Jungle Garden. In addition, the city includes environmental entities such as the MOTE Marine Laboratory and Aquarium, and Celery Fieldsa 440-acre nature preserve and future home of the Nature Center owned and operated by the Sarasota Audubon Society. The area is a haven for hunting, fishing, swimming, boating, sailing, trail running, adventure racing, and more.
More than 100,000 vehicles will pass by the new Fruitville Commons Bass Pro Shops store each day enroute to the areas many outdoor opportunities.
Bass Pro Shops Sarasota Outpost to offer special features The Sarasota Bass Pro Shops Outpost will feature the popular Uncle Bucks Fishbowl and Grill. This 20,000-square-foot nautical-themed entity located within the store features a unique atmosphere and design geared for family fun and dining. Twelve lanes will offer customers the chance to feel like theyre bowling in the ocean. Casual family dining will be available in the grill where customers can Sarasota Bass Pro Shops Outpost will feature Uncle Bucks Fishbowl and Grillselect from a menu featuring a variety of appetizers, sandwiches, salads and burgers. To see the popular Uncle Bucks Fishbowl and Grill, visit this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wwMxwQuaz1w&feature=youtu.be
Nationally, Bass Pro Shops will host more than 116 million people visiting their 85 stores and marine centers across America and Canada this year. The average customer stays 2 ½ hours and drives an average distance of 50+ miles. Bass Pro Shops was named by Advertising Age magazine as one of the Top 10 Hottest Brands in America along with name brands such as Old Spice, M&Ms, iPad and Droid. Also, Bass Pro Shops has been recognized numerous times for their conservation and outdoor education efforts, as well as being recognized by J.D. Power & Associates for their customer service excellence.
Bass Pro Shops unique, award-winning, mega-sized outdoor stores are known for combining retail with entertainment, conservation and outdoor education. More than just a fishing and hunting store, the Bass Pro Shops store will also offer equipment and clothing for hiking, backpacking, wildlife viewing, camping, and other related outdoor gear. A gift and nature center features a wide variety of outdoor-related items from lamps and dishes to bird feeders and furniture. Expansive boat showrooms offer Tracker, Nitro, SunTracker, Tahoe, Grizzly and Mako boats built by Tracker Marine Group, the worlds largest manufacturer of fishing boats.
Bass Pro Shops Dedication to Conservation Bass Pro Shops lodge-like exteriors and outdoor-themed interiors make them popular with customers. The outdoors feel is brought indoors through massive log and rock work, large indoor aquariums and water features stocked with native fish species as well as an extensive collection of museum quality fish and wildlife mounts. Historic photos and exhibits will pay tribute to the regions great outdoor heritage.
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 industrys corporate conservation leader. Bass Pro Shops has partnered with and supports the efforts of many organizations that work to conserve and manage the nations natural resources. The companys key conservation initiatives include fish and wildlife habitat improvements, conservation and outdoor skills education, improving water quality and quality of our lakes and springs, and conservation advocacy.