For 25 years, thousands of people have gathered at Gateway Center in Collinsville, Ill., to attend the Let’s Go Fishing Show held annually in early January.

This family-friendly expo for fishing enthusiasts has grown to be one of the best and largest events of its kind in the midwest.

Positioned as “The Show for Fisherman,” the next Let’s Go Fishing Show will take place on Jan. 5-7, 2018. 

This event has earned a strong reputation of consistently attracting large crowds. Last year’s show drew the largest attendance in show history with approximately 10,000 people over three show days.

Visitors at the show will be able to shop for unique, cutting edge products and services at great prices from over 120 exhibitors, from fishing bait, tackle, rods, reels, and electronics to a variety of fishing boats from local dealers.

Fans will meet the pros at 30 free seminars from a variety of professionals and experts that will give helpful tips on fishing for bass, crappie, catfish, trout, muskie, and other species.

“This year, we have the 2017 Bassmaster Angler of the Year’Brandon Palaniuk speaking at the show,” said Jamie Lane, Let’s Go Fishing Show producer for Gateway Center. “And, we also have the 2016 Bass Pro Shop Crappie Masters Angler Team of the Year Kevin Rogers.

“These pros are as funny and nice as they are talented. Our seminar lineup is going to be excellent. These free seminars are always very popular because it gives people a chance to meet and learn from their mentors.”

For those ready to plan their next fishing adventure, there will be representatives from resorts and destinations to help plan fishing trips to a local or regional lake, a retreat in the Ozarks, a charter fishing trip or even a Canadian resort.

Kids can experience the outdoors inside by fishing in the Cabela’s Fishing Pond, pet live animal exhibits from Treehouse Wildlife Center, and enjoy children’s activities and games including a fishing simulator from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

Gateway Center offers a “buy one child’s admission ticket, get one child’s admission ticket for free coupon” on the website at letsgoshows.com.

Show attendees can also enter to win prizes all weekend long. The big prize is a free Canadian fishing trip to Zup’s Fishing Resort & Canoe Outfitters. The smaller prizes include gadgets, a tackle box full of tackle, fishing rods and reels, guided trips, and much more.

“The show buzzes with excitement with unique products, awesome services, live demonstrations, interactive activities, and educational displays,” said Lane. “Friends new and old spend time talking fishing, stocking up for the season, sharing a drink, and enjoying lots of delicious food in the Sports Lounge and Beer Garden.”

All activities are included with admission, except the food and drinks. Tickets will be available at the door with regular prices $7 for adults; $3.50 for children ages 6-12; children 5 and under are free.

On Friday, seniors age 60 and above will be admitted for only $5. Parking is free. Hours are: Friday: 11 a.m.-8 p.m;

Saturday, 9 a.m.-7 p.m.; and Sunday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

For more information, call (800) 289-238 or visit www.letsgoshows.com.