ALEXANDRIA, Va., November 6, 2014 -- When Western Kentucky University Senior Jacob N. Hopkins and University of Idaho Senior Samuel Martin set out to write their winning essay entries in the BoatUS “Zona’s Awesome Fishing Trip” contest, they likely thought they were angling for only one top prize. However, after judges reviewed both entries -- which chronicle career aspirations, the chance to fish with Zona and being members of BoatUS -- they decided to change the rules and award each student a grand prize trip. Hopkins and Martin will now both get their own “Awesome Fishing Trip” with ESPN Bassmaster and Greatest Fishing Show host Mark Zona, and both will get a $1000 gift card for airfare, lodging and meal expenses.
“BoatUS doubled down on these two guys and now I will show them some of the best bass fishing my home state of Michigan has to offer,” said Zona. “They won’t be able to go home without saying they had the most awesome fishing trip of their lives.” The back-to-back trips are scheduled to take place in May on Lake St. Clair. “I just hope the lake doesn’t look like a Martini on the rocks,” added Zona. “But we’ll see if Kentucky Bourbon or Idaho Potatoes takes home bragging rights. It will be our own little mini-college tourney, and I’m the ringmaster.”
Hopkins said in his essay, “I am 21 years old…it is safe to say every Bassmaster I have watched has had Zona on the cover. He has already taught me so much about fishing through his breakdown of professional angler’s techniques, I can only imagine what a real day on the lake would be like with him.”
Said Martin, “If I was to have the opportunity to fish with Zona, the help and advice he could give me would go beyond value. The knowledge alone would save me years of mistakes and trouble…” Added Martin, “BoatUS fits in with us fishing types…I always feel my patronage is appreciated and plan on keeping my business at BoatUS for as long as you’ll have me. Sure as heck makes going to my disgruntled local mechanic much better, that’s for sure.”
Boat Owners Association of The United States (BoatUS.com
) is the nation’s leading advocate for recreational boaters providing its over half-million members with government representation, services such as 24-hour dispatch, on water boat towing as well as roadside assistance for boat trailers and tow vehicles, feature-packed boat insurance programs, money-saving benefits including marina and service discounts, and vital information that improves recreational boating. Its member-funded BoatUS Foundation is a national leader promoting safe, clean and responsible boating and offers range of boating safety courses – including 33 free state courses – that can be found at BoatUS.org/courses.