Anglers suffer no dearth of bait shops
Although one fishing supply shop closed when county lake superintendent Steve Hudson resigned, the bait market remains strong.
Last Chance Bait Shop and RV Storage can take care of bait as well as wood cutting.
Operated by Janice and Gary Davis at 2193 Pawnee Rd. since the first of April, the business has a portable sawmill.
The bait shop stocks minnows, worms, and other live bait in addition to fishing and camping supplies, ice, and some groceries. Groceries include farm-fresh eggs from the Davises’ chickens.
The property is a mile north of the dam at Marion Reservoir.
“We bought the place for his sawmill and his storage of lumber,” Janice said.
Gary’s woodworking projects run a gamut from cutting boards to making caskets.
“The countertop he made for the shop is beautiful,” Janice said.
Hours are 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.
“If they need something and the light’s on at home, come knock on the door,” Janice said. “We’re usually home. We are there to serve the public.”
The Bait Bucket, just a mile north, also stocks a wide selection of items, owner Rachael Naerebout said.
The shop carries assorted sizes of minnows, perch, goldfish, crawdads, leeches and nightcrawlers. It also stocks frozen bait, lures, and jigs. Other outdoors supplies include rod and reels, and camping, hunting, and trapping supplies as well as licenses. Naerebout also offers fresh eggs, firewood, and, in season, home-grown asparagus. Hours are 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.
Hillsboro’s The Lumberyard has bait and tackle, plus the convenience of a live bait vending machine when stores aren’t open. Salesman Colby Hett said the store offers perch, goldfish, worms, and frozen bait along with a line of tackle.
Hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays, and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays.
Peabody Market is a newcomer to the live bait market in Marion County. Co-owner Jai Crow added bait to its offerings after the bait shop at the county lake closed.
The first shipment of nightcrawlers and minnows arrived June 15. In addition to live bait, Peabody Market sells frozen chicken liver and bait shrimp.
“Our customers have been asking for bait,” Crow said.
Carlsons’ Grocery in Marion is another newcomer to the bait business. It added earthworms in response to the closing of the county lake shop, Nick Carlson said. The store is open 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sundays.
Ace Hardware in Marion stocks nightcrawlers, rod and reels, bobbers, sinkers, and the like, plus a limited supply of camping equipment. Hours are 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily, 1 to 6 p.m. Sunday. Johnson’s General Store in Florence also sells nightcrawlers.