Bait and tackle shops thrive as folks take up fishing to social distance

Posted at 3:41 PM, May 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-07 11:44:01-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF)  — More people are now interested in fishing since it’s a good social distancing activity.

At Starkey’s Bait and Tackle on Bell Road, they’re scrambling to keep the shelves stocked with fishing gear.

“We’ve been really swamped the past two months since the coronavirus kicked in,” Russ Jennette said, “Can’t go to stores, can’t go shopping, can’t go to church, can’t go to malls, can’t take the kids skating. About the only thing you can do is go outside and fish.”

At the Percy Priest Lake Dam, fishermen were casting lines. “Fish have moved into the bottom of the dam and they’re catching paddlefish down there.”

Fishing is also a peaceful way to calm down during a time of uncertainty.

“You can get out away from people and take your mind off of things because you’re concentrating on one thing, watching your pole, and you’re wanting that bite," Jennette said.

Russ said some of the people brought out buckets because they might get lucky and catch supper.

“There’s a lot of people fishing to put food on the table cause all the stores they do get stuff time to time but it does not maintain,” Jennette said, “Try to get the entire family involved, it’s a great activity, it’s relaxing, and it’s a good way to spend quality time with your kids.”

He hopes new fishermen will keep up with their new hobby when all of this is over.