March 17-20, 2016
Features & Attractions
PLEASE NOTE: The following information is from the 2015 Ultimate Sport Show. The 2016 Show details will be posted soon…
The Lumberjacks are Back!
The Great Alaskan IRONJACK Timber Team will be battling it out in the Olympics of the Forest at this year’s Ultimate Sport Show! Two top Alaskan Lumberjacks, Ray Geist and Zach Brown, will be going head-to-head in Chopping, Sawing, Axe Throwing, Hot Saw, Tree Climbing and Log Rolling. These rugged woodsmen are two of the world’s best timber athletes and have been featured on the Outdoor Channel. Show Host, Rob Scheer is a 5-time World Champion Lumberjack and Adventurer. When not cutting logs in competition you can find these men in the wild hunting bear or mountain goats and catching halibut or king salmon from the ocean. The action and stories provided by these men will captivate the crowds at the Show!
IRONJACK Show Schedule:
Thursday: 4pm / 8pm
Friday: 1pm / 5pm / 8pm
Saturday: 1pm / 4pm / 7pm
Sunday: 12pm / 3pm
An indoor lake? You bet! DeVos Place will be home to a huge indoor lake. With over 110,000 gallons of water, this lake provides the ultimate opportunity for our seminar leaders to present from their rigged fishing boats while maneuvering across the waters of Lake Ultimate. These are truly unique seminars seen only at Michigan’s Ultimate Sport Shows!
The Hawg Trough is a mobile 5,000 gallon fish tank that will be at the Ultimate Sport Show with guest fishing experts on hand every day providing seminars and fishing demonstrations. You’ll want to see this unique seminar platform and learn from the best!
The State’s Best Taxidermy
The Michigan’s Taxidermist Association Display will be located on the 3rd floor of DeVos Place. If this is your first time to the Show, come down and see why the first thing so many people say when they walk through the front door of the Sport Show is: “Which way to the taxidermy?” The organization holds their annual competition and convention at the Ultimate Sport Show each year. Fish, deer heads, small and large mammals are on display, upwards of 250 mounts are entered. Most museums would love to have just a sample of this annual display!
15th Annual Tony Gates – Michigan Sportsmen Against Hunger Food Drive
Bring a sack of at least 6 non-perishable food items (cans or boxes) on Thursday ONLY, March 19 to the RV parked in front of DeVos Place and get in to the Show FREE! For the 15th year Tony Gates of WLAV mornings will be broadcasting live from the RV provided by General RV from 6:30am to 6:30pm. The food will be collected by MSAH volunteers and donated to God’s Kitchen of Catholic Charities West Michigan and other needy organizations. This year we are making a special shout-out for TUNA as Dave Carraro of National Geographic’s hit show Wicked Tuna will be at the Ultimate Sport Show Thursday and Friday presenting seminars and selling T-Shirts! …and tuna is a great way to add protein to the diets of the needy. Over 15 years it is estimated that attending Sportsmen, upwards of 2,000 each year, have donated over 120,000 lbs. of food during this, the largest annual single day food drive in Michigan! Help Tony Gates and MSAH volunteers set another record this year!
Big Buck Night West
Seating begins at 6:30pm on Thursday in the Ballroom
Presented by Michigan Out-of-Doors TV Show
Celebrity hosts Jimmy Gretzinger and Jenny Olson will interview the lucky Michigan hunters who have bagged some of the largest whitetail deer of the season. Special consideration is given to hunters who have amazing stories about their trophies. This one-night show will be filmed for airing on the upcoming television program and is a must-see for every Michigan deer hunter!
Mark Martin’s Induction as a Legendary Angler into the Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame
Thursday at 6:30pm in the Ballroom
Mark Martin of Twin Lakes, MI has been known as an incredible fisherman since his “Monster Walleye” nighttime guided trips on White and Muskegon Lakes in the 80’s. When the early Walleye Tournaments began it was only natural that he would take part and win the original Championship of the Professional Walleye Tour (PWT) in 1990. The nation knew he was one of the best. This year his talents and accomplishments are being recognized as he will be inducted into the Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame of Hayward, WI.
Since 1990 Mark Martin has presented seminars at every ShowSpan-produced Sport Show, including the Silverdome, Ford Field, Novi Expo Center, Lansing, and his “home sport show” in Grand Rapids; 75 Sport Shows in total! It is only natural that his induction be performed at the Ultimate Sport Show – Grand Rapids on Thursday night at 6:30pm in the ballroom to be filmed by Jimmy Gretzinger for Michigan Out-of-Doors TV!
It is also only natural that his Hall of Fame plaque be presented to him by longtime friend, mentor and original partner – Hall of Famer Gary Roach. Gary has flown into Grand Rapids for this honor and a special joint seminar that Mark and Gary will present Thursday night.
Meet the Sporting Chef – Scott Leysath
Scott is a leading authority on the proper preparation of fish and game. He is the author of “The Sporting Chef’s Wild Game Recipes” cookbooks. He is also the cooking editor of the Ducks Unlimited Magazine and writes for a number of other publications including California Waterfowl Magazine and Cooking Wild Magazine. Chef Leysath spent four years on HGTV’s “Home Grown Cooking with Paul James.” His inaugural show, “The Sporting Chef” won the Southeastern Press Association’s Excellence in Craft Award for two consecutive years.
Meet Scott at the Sportsmen’s Channel booth (#2205) on Saturday and Sunday!
Turkey Hunting Workshop
Saturday from 10am – 12pm – Seminar Room C
The National Wild Turkey Federation’s annual workshop returns to the Sport Show again this year. Calling, scouting, camouflage, positioning, and choosing firearms and bows are all part of this comprehensive presentation on Saturday morning only.
Grand Rapids Open Turkey Calling Competition
Hosted by the Grand Valley Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation
Saturday, March 21 ~ 2pm – 4pm
The competition will feature some of Michigan’s top callers as they compete for cash and prizes. Judges will include some of Michigan’s best known writers and call manufacturers. Top finalists from the competition will be eligible to compete in the National Calling Competition.
Deer Processing Demo
Steve Francis, owner of Country Smoke House, will demonstrate how to field dress, handle, butcher and process your next whitetail deer. Country Smoke House processes thousands of deer each year. Steve is an expert in his field and will show you the tricks of the trade and lessons learned over decades of hard work in the butchering industry. He starts with a fresh deer and walks through every step of the process from dressing and skinning to butchering and packaging. This is a must-see for every deer hunter and venison lover.
Operated by Northern Little League as a fundraiser, you and your kids are invited to come and try your hand at one of the State’s best trout ponds. Even if you come just to watch, you will see the highest catch percentage of any trout pond! The Steelheaders will clean, fillet and bag with ice your catch at their booth for free. It only costs $5 to give it a try.
Fish Cleaning Demonstrations
Presented by the Grand Rapids Steelheaders
Learn the best way to clean your fish! All fish caught at the trout pond will be cleaned and bagged with ice for free at the Steelheaders’ fish cleaning / demonstration booth. Bring ‘em home ready for the skillet!
Fly Tyers Corner
Presented by the Great Lakes Fly Fishing Company and the Grand River Fly Tyers
Come watch some of the top fly tyers in Michigan as they set up and demonstrate their favorite patterns of fulfill a request. This is a constant workshop for anglers that share an interest in this artful pastime.
Fly Casting Instruction
Come take advantage of FREE fly casting instruction coordinated by the Grand River Fly Tyers. Stop by and ask for help with fly casting fundamentals from beginner to advanced. Professional guides will be on hand to provide tips and techniques that will surely improve your time on the water this year.
Rock Climbing Wall
Participants may climb this 25-foot wall utilizing the state of the art hydraulic billet system, brought to the Show by Cran Hill Ranch. Test your skills with the ultimate in safety. There is a small fee for participation.
Antique & Classic Fishing Tackle
Terry McBurney, award winning Woods-n-Water News writer, will be on hand all four days of the Show exhibiting some of his “Made in Michigan” fishing tackle collection. He is a member of the National Fishing Lure Collectors Club and the Old Reel Collectors Association and is well versed in all kinds of fishing tackle – lures, reels, rods and accessories. Terry will be answering question and offering free appraisals, so Ultimate Sport Show visitors are invited to bring in their old fishing tackle. There might be some valuable surprises!
Vintage Boats & Outboard Motors
Wood and fiberglass boats and outboard motors will be on hand all four days of the Show, presented by Dick Van Raalte, who owns Starboard Marine Restorations of Grand Haven, MI. He professionally restores classic boats, as well as vintage outboards. Dick is a member of the Antique & Classic Boat Society, and the Antique Outboard Motor Club. Ultimate Sport Show visitors are invited to come in and talk to Dick about restoration projects or to bring in old outboard motors for him to appraise.
Virtual Fishing Simulator
Presented by the Michigan Charter Boat Association
Take the trolling rod in hand, watch the video screen and get ready! The salmon takes that lure like a freight train and your job is to land that fish. You have to try this technology! Michigan charter captains are on-hand to coach your fish playing technique. Top scores for the weekend will win charter trips on the Great Lakes.
A highlight of the Show every year is the beautiful and impressive display of the Woodland Woodcarvers. These artisans will display the results of their work, as well as demonstrate their considerable skills. Every year it gets better. Everything from the incredibly lifelike to the whimsically humorous. Woodcarvings of every kind will be on display, and carvers will be happy to discuss their work. Also, this year the Woodland Woodcarvers will have the presence of a World Class Woodcarver.
ORV Certification Class
Presented by the Kent County Sheriff’s Department
Saturday ONLY, March 21 ~ 12pm-5pm
The Kent County Sheriff’s Department will be conducting an Off Road Vehicle Certification Course. Certification is required for all children under 16 years old to operate an ORV in Michigan (even on private property). However, the course is available to older ORV operators as well. Successful completion of the class will lead to certification as an “ORV Operator by the Michigan DNR.” A test will be administered at the completion of the class and after the class participants will be able to enjoy the Sport Show at no charge. For addition information call 616-632-6223 (pre-registration is not required). Class participants should check in at the Exhibitor Table at the Main Entrance located near the Box Office on Saturday.
Ultimate Walleye Clinic
Saturday: 12pm – 2pm
NEW this year – the clinic is FREE with your paid show admission ticket (no additional fee for the clinic) – Register at Romanack’s Booth #2172
Walleye Gurus Mark Romanack and Jake Romanack will join forces for the Ultimate Walleye Clinic!
It would be hard to find two anglers with more collective walleye fishing experience. These men are ardent trollers who have spent countless hours fishing the open waters of Lake Erie and Saginaw Bay for trophy walleyes. Just some of the topics of interest that are sure to be covered in this seminar include crankbait trolling, using planer boards, fishing diving planers, using downriggers, snap weight trolling, techniques for drifting and trolling live bait and much more. This special 2-hour workshop on advanced Walleye Techniques will cover every new angle for fishermen who want to climb to the next level of catching walleyes.
Register for the clinic at Mark Romanack’s booth #2172. Each attendee will receive a chance to win one of dozens of door prizes. Don’t miss this opportunity to learn from the pros!
Ultimate Salmon Clinic
Sunday: 11:30am – 1:30pm
NEW this year – the clinic is FREE with your paid Show Admission ticket (no additional fee for the clinic) – Register at the Grand Rapids Steelheaders’ Booth #2000
Presented by Dave Engel and Bill Bale of Best Chance Promotions
These two superstars of Big Lake Tournaments will share their special techniques and experience garnered over the last 20 years as tournament champions on the Great Lakes. Whether it is long lining lead core, maximizing Dipsy results, getting the most out of your electronics, or selecting your tackle, time spent here will assuredly improve next year’s catch.
Register for the clinic at the Grand Rapids Steelheaders’ booth #2000. Plenty of time will be set aside for questions and answers.
Ultimate Electronics Clinic
Sunday: 1:30pm – 3:30pm
$25 Fee – Purchase tickets at the Walleye 101 booth #1468
Join Lance Valentine of Walleye 101 for an in-depth seminar designed to help you get the most from your Lowrance sonar / GPS units. Topics covered include: Sonar Interpretation; Using and Reading StructureScan; Advanced GPS Usage / Waypoint Management; Creating Your Own Lake Maps; Using Multiple Units; Planning a Sonar / GPS System; Basic Installation and Rigging; Using Networks and Ethernet; and New Products.
Ultimate Bass Clinic
Saturday: 3pm – 5pm
$25 Fee – Purchase tickets in the Xtreme Bass Tackle Booth
Capt. Wayne Carpenter and Combat Bass Fishing Pro Staff offer you a look into bass fishing secrets in technique, style and tackle. Get more than your monies worth from a seminar that delivers the details then sends you out with info and more value in product than you paid for! Get the inside scoop on techniques from tournament fishing pro-staff and guide level techniques for dialing in on spots from Capt. Wayne. At the end, fire questions at our panel and get more than one perspective or solution for catching super bass. One hour just isn’t long enough for anglers who want advanced bass fishing information so get two hours, and leave with more than you bargained for! Sign up for the Ultimate Bass Clinic and get a “tournament tune-up” for the upcoming season.
A fee of $25 will be collected at the Xtreme Bass Tackle booth Thursday through Saturday morning. Each attendee will receive a “free gift” valued at more than the cost of the clinic, plus a chance to win the Grand Prize drawing! Those signing up for the clinic on Thursday or Friday will be given a free re-admission pass to enter the show on Saturday for the Clinic. Don’t miss this opportunity to learn from a team of professionals who want to see you succeed! Sign up early, seating is limited.