WILKES-BARRE — If you’re looking for anything from information on how to fish the Susquehanna River to finding the perfect taxidermist, Mohegan Sun Pocono is the place to be this weekend.
Thousands of patrons have already flocked to Mohegan Sun Pocono for the 5th annual Wild Pennsylvania “Cabin Fever” Hunting-Fishing-Outdoor Expo held in the Keystone Grand Ballroom. The event continues Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., admission is $7. The event started on Friday and this is the second time the event was held Mohegan Sun Pocono’s new ballroom.
Two local vendors set up shop in the ballroom. Dallas Sporting Goods, located in Shavertown, was offering items carried in its store and several show specials. The other was the Pittston Rod and Gun Club, a 10-member club established in 1993 that prides itself on giving back to the community.
“Coming to the shows is more about meeting new people and getting our name out there – more so than making money,” said Antonio Constantino, of Hanover, who has been working at Dallas Sporting Goods for two years. “Many of the people will come to the store after seeing us at the show.”
The store carries everything from high-end reels and poles to everyday fishing equipment. They also sell hunting calls and scents, along with clothing. Being a local face, Constantino said, makes the show worth it.
“Everyone knows (owner Bob Albee),” he said. “They are always asking about the shows. It’s a small, family community thing.”
The Pittston Rod and Gun Club was chancing off three guns at the show over the weekend to anyone who passed by its table. The club has begun giving back to the community by participating in events such as Relay For Life and the Adopt-A-Highway program.
President Ky Lamarca, of Mountain Top, said the small club currently offers Hunter-Trappers Education, as well as several other events throughout the year.
“For us it gives an opportunity to get our name out the public,” Lamarca said. “We’re a private gun club but we do a lot of things in the area.”
Alan Probst, star of the “Wild Pennsylvania” TV show which can be seen on ROOT Sports Pittsburgh, runs the expo. He said 35 vendors were in the Keystone Grand Ballroom.
“We have vendors from Africa and New Brunswick, Canada,” Probst said. “The predominate majority always saw it’s a great show and it’s really awesome.”
Probst said having the event at the Mohegan Sun Pocono has been a plus.
“It gives us a better venue to have it and it creates a family-friendly atmosphere,” he said. “People can make a whole day of it.”
Each day, patrons have the opportunity to listen to three different seminars: Bass Fishing the Susquehanna River, Tracking Big Game and Susquehanna River Catfishing. Lance Dunham of LD Guide Service from New Albany, gave seminars on how to fish the Susquehanna River.
Dunham, who runs his service on the river in Bradford County, gave his opinions on how to fish for small mouth bass in the warm and cold months. If you’re fishing in the cold months, he said, you have to slow down for more lethargic fish. In the warmer months, fisherman will find they’re catching smaller fish because the smaller fish can move quicker in the warmer water.
“You want to find the eddys,” he said. “That’s the first thing I do. Everyone’s skills are just as good as mine. I just get to do it every day.”
Dunham said he’s on the water around 250 days out of the year. Sunday’s shows feature Susquehanna Bass Fishing at noon and Tracking Big Game at 1 p.m.
Reach Nick Wagner at 570-991-6406 or on Twitter @Dispatch_Nick