A rendering of Bass Pro Shops’ Outdoor World coming soon to Alton Marketplace.

Opening draws near for Bass Pro Shops

by Doug Morino

The familiar, log-cabin pitched roof of a Bass Pro Shops superstore is rising above Alton Marketplace as America’s premier outdoor retailer prepares to open.

Construction is expected to wrap up in early 2024, according to company officials. When the doors push open, the 140,000-square-foot Outdoor World will offer an immersive experience unlike any in the region.

Get ready for museum-like aquariums, thousands of local antiques and artifacts and wildlife dioramas and murals depicting local outdoor scenes. The retailer also will sell ATVs and Tracker boats.

“We are tremendously excited to work with Irvine Company to bring our vision to life,” says Johnny Morris, who founded Bass Pro Shops in 1972 in Springfield, Missouri. “There is no stronger company to work with in the region focused on the outdoor, coastal lifestyle.”

Morris, known as “The Walt Disney of the Outdoors” for creating experiences that connect people with nature, says he chose Irvine because it is surrounded by the largest urban open space network in America.

Many of the store’s 125 workers will teach outdoor-skills workshops in fly fishing, Dutch-oven cooking, GPS navigation and archery hunting with an in-store archery range.

They’ll also host events to connect audiences to the outdoors, including free fishing seminars, casting games and in-store catch-and-release programs to teach kids the basics of fishing.

Morris, who has been awarded the National Audubon Society’s Audubon Medal for his conservation work, says the Irvine store will serve as “a community partner in protecting the region’s natural spaces and pristine ecosystems for future generations.”

The store is located at 71 Technology Drive West, just off I-5, in the Irvine Spectrum District.

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