Those We Honor

You’ll find more than just fishing celebrities in this list. One can make a significant impact
on the lives of many without ever being well known. It is important to honor all of
those who had a great influence on the great sport of fishing, whether famous or not.
Corporate advances tend to be much more visible to us. For it’s their products that
shape the evolution of the sport of fishing.



Class of 2023

In 1971, soon-to-be-married Jeff Arnold and Kay Campbell made a bold move that would forever impact Minnesota’s fishing scene. They purchased Reed’s Sporting Goods and Gift Store downtown Walker. Kay would run the gift store, Jeff the sporting-goods store. Through Reed’s Sporting Goods, a classic family operation, Jeff would become one of Minnesota’s best-known sellers of fishing tackle and accessories. His many years and long hours in the store and in sport-show booths and aisles—pitching the advantages of the latest fishing tackle and electronics—are truly legendary.

And what a legendary location for Reed’s — downtown Walker, a few blocks from Minnesota’s third-largest lake, Leech Lake. Jeff had grown up at Timberlane Resort at Whipholt, doing lots of kid-fishing on Leech. Reed’s in-store regulars have included many of the state’s best-known musky and walleye guides. What an ideal proving ground for the latest innovations in fishing equipment and outdoor gear!

Jeff and Kay’s four children — Adam, Alissa, Drew, and Angela—were steeped in the family business. Adam and Drew would eventually run the show. In addition to the Walker store, Reed’s expanded with a store in Baxter, and then with the present Onamia store just south of Mille Lacs. Along the way, Jeff and his family have worked to attract youngsters to the angling sport.

Credit Jeff Arnold for appreciating Minnesota’s all-time great contributors to Minnesota’s sport-fishing heritage. He started the Minnesota Fishing Hall of Fame back in 2000. Its original location was in Walker’s Industrial Park, where the Hall’s first classes of inductees were honored. It was surely fitting that the Minnesota Fishing Hall of Fame’s founder, Jeff Arnold, be honored with his own induction in 2012.

Jeff told Walker’s newspaper, the Pilot Independent, “We wanted to recognize and honor those who built the sport. These people have so much impact in the fishing industry, and we wanted to grow the sport.”

Jeff Arnold’s pioneering idea remains the central mission of today’s Minnesota Fishing Hall of Fame: Honor and recognize Minnesota fishing’s legendary pacesetters whose creativity and work have helped grow the sport and the state’s rich fishing heritage.