BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — If you are near Birmingham, Ala., this weekend, you should not miss the opportunity to see the world's best bass anglers weigh in on the stage at the 2014 GEICO Bassmaster Classic presented by Diet Mountain Dew and GoPro.
One of the greatest things about the Classic is that you don't need tickets to attend, and the entire event is free.
Here's everything you need to know about coming to see the big show.
If you appreciate seeing a good sunrise, you'll enjoy the daily launches. To watch the pros take off, go to City Harbor, 201 Blount Ave., in Guntersville, Ala., Friday through Sunday. The boats leave at 7:15 a.m. CT, so be sure to get there early so you can interact with the anglers ahead of time.
After the pros have left the area, you get to ride in a boat, too! Several bass boat companies are offering demo rides. To join in, sign up at the tents on-site. (You have to be at least 16 years old to participate.)
Parking at City Harbor is limited, so you can park at one of these spots to catch a shuttle to the launch: Guntersville High School, Factory Connection, Cherokee Elementary School, Guntersville Rec Enter, Guntersville Middle School, Lurleen B. Wallace Pavilion, County Park One or Erroll Allen Park. Be ready to catch the shuttle by 6:30 a.m. each day.
Some exhibitors at the take-off will be selling breakfast items.
For many fans, the best part of the Bassmaster Classic is the Expo, where you can ogle new products, buy gear or maybe even win prizes. You can also fill your autograph book (or cap or shirt or arm, depending on your autograph tastes) because many pros who are not competing in the Classic will be there — and they're often happy to pose for a photo, too! Tweet or Instagram your photos with the hashtag #bassmasterclassic and your photo could appear in the Expo or on the big screen at the weigh-in.
The Bassmaster Classic Outdoors Expo presented by Dick's Sporting Goods will be held in the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex at 2100 Richard Arrington Jr. Blvd. in Birmingham. Here are the hours:
Friday, Noon to 8 p.m. CT
Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. CT
Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m . CT
Of course, the crown jewel of the Bassmaster Classic is watching the world's best fishermen cross the stage with their catch. You can do that each day at the Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex Arena, also at 2100 Richard Arrington Jr. Blvd. in Birmingham. The doors open each day at 3 p.m CT, and you can make sure you get a good seat if you get there then.
Want a better seat? There are two ways you can sit on the floor in the coveted Livewell section. Stop by the GEICO booth at the Expo ahead of time and get a "Quote for your Boat" for an opportunity to secure Livewell passes, or listen for the announcement at the weigh-in each day at 3:30 p.m. to participate in the Evan Williams Seriously Good Seats Contest, in which attendees text for the opportunity to win a Livewell VIP seat.
Did we mention this whole event is free?