Family time in the Big Apple

About the author

Kevin VanDam

Kevin VanDam

In the world of professional bass fishing, Kevin VanDam is at the pinnacle and arguably the best in the world.

The holidays are very special to me in more ways than one. They give me a break from a hectic schedule and a chance to spend time with family.

In fact, I was working Thanksgiving Day but included the family this time. We flew to New York where I represented Bass Pro Shops on the nationally syndicated “Fox and Friends” TV news program. Bass Pro uses the popular news broadcast to promote its Christmas specials. I’ve done the show a couple of other times, but never during the holiday like this.

It is special because it gives the four of us time together in New York City. There’s never a better time to be in the Big Apple than during the holidays.

The television program aired live from 6 to 9 Thanksgiving morning. During news breaks, I discussed some of the special items that shoppers can find at Bass Pro retail outlets.

Bass Pro creates a huge outdoors set at the show and I demonstrated some of the hot items offered at retail stores. My twin sons (Jackson and Nicholas) were “actors” on the program. They were sitting around a campfire making S’mores.

Among the cool stuff I was able to feature was a radio-controlled KVD boat and truck that Bass Pro is marketing to kids this year. I also showed off some clothing items that Bass Pro Shops offers.

If you’ve never been to a Bass Pro Shops during the Christmas season, you should make a point of it, especially if you have children. Each store has a Santa’s Wonderland where children can have their picture taken with Santa Claus for free from now through Dec. 24.

After we did the Fox and Friends program, we headed out to the streets to watch Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. We also got to go to Radio City and see the Rockettes Christmas Spectacular and walk the shops downtown.

Once we return from New York, the boys and I will do a little hunting in Michigan before I head to Texas for more deer hunting. Jackson shot a nice 8 pointer with a muzzleloader on opening day of our gun season and I hope to help Nicholas get his deer before I leave.

I love the solitude of being in the woods – away from the phone and business obligations. And while I’m definitely on a mission to kill a big buck, it gives me time to think about fishing. Odd as it may seem, a lot of my Bassmaster Classic strategies are formulated in my mind while sitting in a tree stand waiting for that big buck to come walking by.

You can bet I will be thinking about the upcoming Classic on the Red River over the next couple of weeks. I’ll be thinking about potential patterns and how they would match up with different conditions we might face.

I plan to redeem myself after my 30th place finish the last time we fished a Classic there. Winning my 5th Classic title would be the perfect way to do that.

Remember, it’s all about the attitude!

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