A goal of the visit is for the children to gain an appreciation of the environment by learning about conserving fish habitats and being respectful of nature. The anglers will take this opportunity to educate the students about why more than 52 million people pick up their rods and wet a line each year - because fishing is a fun, wholesome activity the entire family can enjoy. They will explain life as a pro angler and give the children a chance to ask questions. The visit is tailored to introduce the next generation of anglers to the wonderful world of fishing.
Fujifilm's pro team, which includes some of bass fishing's most successful anglers, has had a consistent presence in the communities that have hosted Wal-Mart FLW Tour events during the last four years. The team has made several appearances in local grade schools and children's hospitals on the tournament circuit, encouraging children to get involved in the lifelong sport of fishing.
"Fujifilm is proud to sponsor a winning team of anglers," said Cindy Bogan, national account manager, Fuji Photo Film U.S.A. Inc. "With their influence and guidance, we feel strongly that our team will educate kids about the fun of fishing and the importance of conservation while inspiring the next generation of anglers and photographers."
Fujifilm will offer another opportunity for children of all ages to learn more about fishing during the FLW Tour Championship Boat and Outdoor Show, which is free and open to the public. Fujifilm will set up a fishing pond for children to catch trout, have their photos taken with their catches and then release the trout back into the pond. The outdoor show runs from 2-8 p.m. Aug. 11-12, from noon-9 p.m. Aug. 13 and from 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Aug. 14. It will be set up at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex in Birmingham.
Outside the tournament, Fujifilm also takes an active role in motivating children to fish, photograph and release. For the past three years, Fujifilm has sponsored the "Fish, Photograph and Release" (FPR) program to promote and encourage kids and their families to fish, take a photograph of the catch, and then release the fish back into the water.
The 2003 national Fujifilm FPR Photo Contest was promoted during more than 1,800 Wal-Mart Kids All-American Fishing Derbies at area lakes in all 50 states. An estimated 300,000-plus young anglers from ages 5 to 16 participated. Winners were based on the quality and creativity of the photos and the creativity of the essay. To view the 2003 winning photographs online, visit Fujifilm's Web site at www.fujifilm.com/fishing. For information about the 2004 Kids All-American Fishing Derbies program, go to the Web site at www.kids-fishing.com.
"The success of the Fish, Photograph and Release program demonstrates Fujifilm's commitment to and support of fishing while also incorporating the fun of photography," Bogan said.
The 2004 Fujifilm pro angler team comprises Randy Blaukat of Lamar, Mo.; Robert Bogan of Farmington, Ark.; Scott Bonnema of Forest Lake, Minn.; Brent Brady of Hixson, Tenn.; Joel Richardson of Kernersville, N.C.; Sean Stickler of Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; Shawn Strader of Rockwood, Tenn.; Wesley Strader of Spring City, Tenn.; Sam Swett of Covington, La.; and Wes Thomas of Hanover, Ind.
Established in 1965, Fuji Photo Film U.S.A. Inc. is the United States marketing subsidiary of Tokyo-based Fuji Photo Film Co. Ltd., a leading manufacturer of imaging and information products. Fujifilm's U.S. headquarters are located in Elmsford, N.Y.
Named after the legendary founder of Ranger Boats, Forrest L. Wood, FLW Outdoors is the world's leading marketer of competitive fishing. It administers the Wal-Mart FLW Tour, the world's most lucrative bass-tournament series; the EverStart Series, known as the pathway to the Wal-Mart FLW Tour; the Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League for weekend anglers; and the Wal-Mart Texas Tournament Trail. FLW Outdoors also operates the Wal-Mart RCL Walleye Tour, the world's most lucrative walleye-tournament series, and the Wal-Mart RCL Walleye League for weekend anglers.
Wal-Mart and many of America's most respected companies support FLW Outdoors and its tournament trails. Wal-Mart has been the title sponsor of FLW Outdoors since 1997. For a complete list of FLW Outdoors sponsors and for more information about the premier products and services they offer, please visit FLWOutdoors.com's sponsor page.
For more information about Fujifilm products, call (800) 800-FUJI or visit the Fujifilm U.S.A. Web site at Fujifilm.com. For more information about FLW Outdoors, call (270) 252-1000.