MOUNT HOPE — The 10th annual 2018 Northeast Ohio Sportsman Show, held on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Jan. 18-20, 2018, at the Mount Hope Event Center, offers sportsmen everything from camo to ammo, as event owner Jody Witzky likes to say.
"We invite you to be part of one of the fastest growing sportsman shows in the Midwest," Witzky said of the 2018 Northeast Ohio Sportsman Show (NEOSS). "Everything is getting bigger and better. It’s all under one roof. They added another 20,000 square (feet) to the building, so the hunting and fishing seminars will be under the same roof."
NEOSS was started by Wayne Miller of Kidron Sports in January 2009. One year later, JW Promotions assumed ownership of the event, which offers everything of interest to today’s hunter, angler, trapper, archer, boater and hiker.
"We’ve got it all from Camo to Ammo, Kayaks to Canoes, Guns to Gear, Bows to Bough, Tackle to Traps and Duck Calls to Deer Blinds," Witzky said.
The show features more than 160 vendors, as well as outfitters from the United States, Canada and Africa at the Mount Hope Event Center, located at 8076 state Route 241. Fin Feather Fur is joining the show for the first time this year and Lifetime Predators Hunting out of Canada is another new vendor.
"If you’re looking to book the hunt of a lifetime, or a fishing trip you’ll never forget, or simply to get away to go horseback riding or something like that, there’s just something for everyone," Witzky said. "It’s exciting how this little show that Kidron Sports started 10 years ago has grown to be where it’s at."
Miller said he is not surprised by the success of the sportsman show, because it offers so much to the sportsmen of the area and beyond.
"I think it’s done a lot for the sporting community, all the guys into hunting and fishing," Miller said. "It’s a big draw for those people. They get a lot of vendors in there anymore, and I think it’s growing every year. When I started this, I was hoping for something like this, but I’ve been amazed how it has turned out."
NEOSS has been offering informational seminars for all sportsmen, featuring well-known speakers, on hunting, fishing and land management, as well as trapping, to name a few.
Angling experts, including Ohio fishing guide Doug Stewart, bass pro Jim Vitaro and host of the popular Buckeye Sportsman Radio Network Dan Armitage, as well as Ohio hunting personality Bill Epeards, will be back again this year.
"It’s an amazing show right now," Witzky said. "The move to the new location is the best thing we’ve done. We’re bringing FOX-TV out of Cleveland in to help promote the event. Everyone from Port Clinton to Ashtabula, and Mansfield to Dover-New Philadelphia, and everyone in between will hear about this show on TV.
"We look for it to grow even more because of that extra media exposure," he added.
As part of the addition, Mount Hope Event Center opened a new kitchen this year, so people won’t have to go outside for food. It features an indoor kitchen and eating area.
"Last year there was no place for the people to eat, so they would have to stand outside and eat," Witzky said. "There’s no tunnel connecting buildings. Everything’s under one roof. We really want to thank Thurman Mullet for adding on."
"The Sportsman Show is a mammoth event for our area and on our event schedule at the Mount Hope Event Center," Paul Money of Mount Hope Auction said. "It’s always a big splash that draws in great vendors and several visitors looking for new and exciting trends in the hunting, fishing and outfitter universe. Here at the Event Center, we are blessed to be a part of the show."
Witzky said more than 12,000 visitors stopped at the 2017 NEOSS, and he expects this year’s show to be even bigger and better. Admission is $10, with kids 12 and under admitted free. A three-day pass is $15. Parking is free. Show hours are Thursday 2-9 p.m., Friday 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
For more information, check out the new website: http://ohiosportsmanshow.com.
The Daily Record is a sponsor of NEOSS.