3 questions with Eric Haataja: Coming to Rosemont

SHARE 3 questions with Eric Haataja: Coming to Rosemont
SHARE 3 questions with Eric Haataja: Coming to Rosemont

Here’s the online version of the Wednesday column on the Sun-Times outdoors page.

Eric Haataja has a few things left to do.

The hottest fisherman/multi-species guide in the upper Midwest (wibigfish.com) will be a key speaker at the Chicago Outdoor Sports Show, which opens Wednesday and runs through Sunday at the Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont. The main part of the show will be Friday through Sunday when the Chicagoland Gun show is co-located with it.

This is the major general outdoors show (hunting and fishing) for the winter. Jim Grandt said that the show is a third larger than last year. He added that Pure Fishing is bringing several manufacturers to their display. The gun show will have several dealers with guns on the floor.


The seminar lineup includes national, headlined by Mike Iaconelli, Jonathon VanDam and Spence Petros, and local presenters in both hunting and fishing. There will be an emphasis on women in the outdoors this year, including presentations by Jen Ripple and Jessica Nyberg.

Haataja, of West Allis, Wis., holds a line-class record for brown trout and has landed enough big fish to make him a YouTube sensation. He will present on “Trophy Spring Walleye on Green Bay’’ at 4:15 p.m. Friday and noon Sunday; and on “Lake Michigan’s World-Class Brown Trout Fishing’’ at 4 p.m. Saturday.


This winter, I am doing three questions with a show personality (only Mike Ditka gets four questions in the Sun-Times) as a preview each week. This week it is Haataja.

1) What goal is left for you in fishing?

Yes, I would like to break the world-record brown trout.A goal I have left in fishing is to be able to impact and inspire millions of people around the worldin the sport of fishing by teaching and passing on what I have learned.

2) What will draw your interest at the show after or before your presentations?

What draws me to the show is finding new lures, rods, reels, tackle and getting to meet and chat with others about the sport of fishing.

3) What do you hope people take away from your presentations, in general and specifically?

[I hope they] take away a ton of knowledge on Green Bay walleye migration and how to catch them. I’m going to give them a lotknowledgein one hour that has taken me 20 years on the water. I want them to walk away confident that they can go out and have a greatexperience on the water and have success from what they have learned in my seminar.

SPRINGFIELD: No clarity yet on why Illinois fishing regulations were published online early with mistakes. It remains unclear what will be enforced in tournament regulations, beginning April 1.

HUNTING: No final total deer harvest numbers yet; but I suspect they will not reach the anticipated 160,000 but should be higher than the collapse of the 2013-14 seasons.. I will post the numbers when they come.

STRAY CAST: Listening to Eric Schoenberg of the Patriotic Millionaires Club backing the need to tax the rich is like finding a commercial netter backing conservation measures.

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