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.

Burger Brothers

Burger Brothers

Inducted 2017

Ted and Bud Burger

Submitted for nomination to the Minnesota Fishing Hall of Fame Class of 2017

Ted and Bud Burger were born as identical twins on September 20, 1944, and grew up in the Twin Cities. Their summers were spent at a family cabin on Lake Alexander, where they were introduced to fishing and the outdoor activities that spawned their interest in the great outdoors. They attended Bemidji State University, and the University of Minnesota. They both served in the Air Force during the Viet Nam war, returning home to further pursue their passion to hunt and fish.
As they fished and hunted, they grew an intense interest and appreciation for quality fishing and hunting equipment and clothing. And, they recognized that a huge demand existed for these products. They opened their first store at 44th and France in Edina in 1969 at the age of 25 years old. They proceeded to build a sporting goods store chain that provided outdoorsmen with high quality merchandise that met their high standards; while being assisted by experts in the field of hunting and fishing and within a desirable outdoor type atmosphere. During their 26 year run, they established stores in Bloomington, Brooklyn Center, Roseville, Minnetonka, Rochester, and Woodbury. They established a Sporting Goods Chain that became the model for others that followed like Cabela’s and Gander Mountain. When Burger Brothers was sold in 1995, they employed 400 people in six locations.

Ted and Bud were industry innovators, hosting promotional instore seminars, operating fly fishing schools, and hosting the original “sports talk” weekly radio show where they answered questions from their very loyal listening audience. They also published their popular Burger Brother’s newspaper the “Guideline”. And, they often hosted fishing tours to the Great Bear Lake in the Arctic, establishing a loyal following from throughout the United States.
Ted and Bud Burger recognized that sportsmen of their era demanded quality products, expert advice, and a quality outdoor shopping experience. Their passion to fish and hunt, and commitment to providing quality to the customers they served allowed them to fill a niche during a time period when fishing and hunting was growing significantly.

Manufacturers frequently solicited their input on new products, and as avid users their input was invaluable as new items became an integral part of the product lines sold within their stores. Many successful musky fishermen used the popular “Burger Bucktail” lure. Their coined slogan was “The Best Price With The Right Advice”.
The story of the growth of Minnesota Sport Fishing is not complete without the Burger Brothers Story. Ted and Bud Burger were pioneers in the sport fishing industry, and expert multi-species anglers. They contributed greatly to the enhancement of fishing opportunities and education of anglers by providing cutting edge equipment and clothing supported with expert advice. They were pioneers in sporting goods retailing. The Burger Brother legacy surely warrants a place in the Minnesota Fishing Hall of Fame.

It is further noted that Ted and Bud have fished across the U.S. and in numerous countries enjoying both freshwater and saltwater fly fishing, as well as spin and bait casting. Their travels include fishing in Mexico, The Bahamas, Argentina, Canada, the United States; and perhaps most memorable, Russia. In 1986 they were among the first fishermen outside the country of Russia to be invited by the official Russian Federation to the Kola Peninsula on the Umba River, the first non-Russian group to do so.
Presently they fish off the Baja in Mexico in the Sea of Cortez and the Pacific Ocean; and have recently built a home, with their wives Kathy and Jan, on Lake of the Woods.