One of Boo’s fave places to visit around town is Bass Pro Shop. We pass it every week on our way to music therapy and he gets so excited when I tell him we can stop… More than a place to buy camping and boating supplies, Bass Pro Shop is a fun place to to just walk around and look at everything!
Boo loves looking at all the animals and telling me stories about each one. Then he likes to take my hand and enjoy the huge aquarium they have inside the store! Coming inside doesn’t cost anything, and on a hot , summer day… it’s an awesome place to hang out and look around with your kiddos!
Boo loves not just the animals, but climbing inside the tents they have set up and looking at all the fun items such as boats and ATV’s! They even have a place inside that makes fresh, homemade, fudge!!!! My kids have always loved this and they knew if mom had to go into Bass Pro Shop to buy something they would get to each pick a piece of fudge!
Today we came here for one of their awesome family events!! Bass Pro Shop is one of the most family friendly stores around… They often have free events for children! (At Christmas, they have the most BEAUTIFUL display set up throughout their store AND you can see Santa and get a pic for FREE!!!!) Anyhow, back to today… The event is called “Gone Fishin'” and Boo was super excited!
A huge aquarium was set up and kiddos could fish in a catch and release pond. No charge, and kids got a Gone Fishin’ sign for their bedroom doors, a coloring book that teaches them about fishing, an award with their name that says they caught a fish, a free kids meal coupon AND parents were emailed a cute pic of their kiddos that looks like they are on the cover of a fishing magazine! Awesomeness!!!!
Boo was super excited for the event to start! While waiting we met Jess. She was the sweetest employee and so kind to Boo. He asked her all sorts of questions about fishing and she was so patient and kind to him. She was busy getting ready for the event , yet made time for my little boy and made him feel important…
I strongly suggest all parents look into Bass Pro Shop events near them, but especially special needs families…. Jess knew immediately that my son had special needs and went out of her way to make him comfortable and feel incredibly important! She took the time to listen him carefully ( his expressive speech is impaired) and I can’t tell you how much that meant to me….
As the line behind us grew, Boo was getting more and more excited. His eyes lit up when he saw professional fishermen coming out to help! 8 kiddos at a time got to fish. Boo was smiling ear to ear as one of the professionals showed him how to cast out his line… From across the way we heard cheering and glanced up to see a little girl proudly holding her fish up for all to see. Each child got 10 min to fish and as they announced 1 minute left, Boo looked at his pole and said , “Mama… what if I don’t get one?” I was just about to take the opportunity to have a mom moment, where I would explain that sometimes the fun in something is the experience even if we don’t have the outcome we want…. but….. he suddenly cheered!!! His pole bent slightly and the man helping us used a net to help Boo scoop up his fish! Boo was SO proud!!
The look on my little boys face when he caught his first fish is priceless…. I can not thank Bass Pro Shop enough for putting on this event… As a single mom, it would be difficult for me to take my little boy fishing and so this experience really was special for us.
As we walked thru the store after our time was up , Boo proudly clutched his Gone Fishin’ award to him with one hand while holding tightly to me with his other hand… “Mama!!!!! I DID it!!!!” Again, I have to say thank you so much to those who planned this event…. you have made my mamas heart smile with joy to see my little boy so happy!!
Boo worked up quite an appetite while fishing so we made our way across the store to their restaurant! If we thought the store was awesome…. well, the restaurant was also amazing!! Boo’s eyes got big as we walked in and he pointed out life-sized sharks, swordfish and more! We were sat right next to a huge aquarium and we giggled and laughed watching all the fish darting around right in front of us!
Boo was super excited to order Alligator for an appetizer and had shrimp (his fave meal) and fries for lunch… I went simpler and had a burger but this was the biggest burger I’ve ever been served! It was delicious but I had to take half home for later… They are very generous in their servings and it would have been perfect size for sharing. I was stuffed , but Boo is like a never ending pit of hunger and he was grinning when the waitress brought him out a Bucket of Bait…. pudding with crushed Oreos and gummy worms!!
Happy, relaxed and full, we gathered up our stuff and headed home… This was a perfect day….
I’d love to hear from my readers– What is your first fishing memory?
Be sure to check out a Bass Pro Shop near you and see what their next family event will be! http://www.basspro.com