Local Bait Shop Prepared For Season Ahead

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By Haley Potter

ERIE, Pa. (Erie News Now) – As summer days draw near, the fish are making a splash in Lake Erie, leaving fishermen like Captain Mark Rose from Bass Online, itching to get into the water with his fishing reel.

“It’s just really crazy right now with the weather, but the fish continue to bite and it should be a pretty fun year this year,” Rose said.

He was out fishing on Tuesday and expects a big year of fishing, for his business where he takes people out on the water.

That is only possible with all the necessary equipment. So we wanted to know, with constant supply issues everywhere, how are bait and tackle shops holding up?

“We actually are ordering months in advanced to get stuff that we need for the upcoming season,” Kirk Rudzinski, the owner of East End Angler said.

He and his wife own the shop and he told Erie News Now they’re holding up alright because they know there are all sorts of things in short supply.

“Like our walleye stuff we ordered back in January and it’s just starting to show up, which starts here May 1st,” Rudzinski said.

A big key to helping his business through the pandemic has been ordering ahead and ordering local.

“We’re not relying on China as much,” he said.

Most of their fishing supplies is being made right here by companies like Bay Rats right off Peninsula Drive and Dutch Fork out of Titusville, to avoid shipping delays and support local.

The pandemic caused a lot of people to cast a line, as a new hobby. For many the hobby stuck.

“It’s still going strong with the amount of people who are out fishing,” Rudzinski said.

That is certainly good news for his East Lake Road bait shop. He said because they are keeping up and ordering ahead, he doesn’t expect any issues, just shows signs of enthusiasm, after a few pandemic years.

“I’m very excited,” Rudzinski said. “Every time the season comes up every year, year after year, you just get a new surge and you’re ready to go.”


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