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.

Ted Capra

Ted Capra

Inducted 2000

“My passion all my life has been fishing,” Ted Capra says. “It started when my dad would take my older brother fishing and I couldn’t go. So I got even with both of them and just fished all my life.”

Many of Capra’s most successful endeavors have revolved around merging his fishing passion with his professional skills. In 1980 he started Capra’s Marine Electronics, a company that sold and repaired depth finders and trolling motors. In 1987 he opened the doors to Capra’s Sporting Goods. With the help of his wife Nancy and their two sons, Dean and Tony, Capra’s Sporting Goods became one of the midwest’s most unique and complete sporting goods stores, where they not only sold the gear but gave customers valuable information about the equipment and fishing in general.

A born competitor, Capra has been no stranger to the tournament circuits for all species. He’s Minnesota’s most victorious tournament angler with more than 25 first-place finishes to his credit. To round out his career as a fishing innovator, retailer, tournament angler and communicator, Ted has appeared on numerous television fishing shows – including titles he himself created and produced.

Always a creative thinker, when Capra decided to sell his home on Lake Minnetonka in a tough economy, he added a unique incentive to the home’s buyers. They would also get Capra’s fishing boat and he’d spill the beans on all his favorite fishing hot spots on the lake.

One important topic on Lake Minnetonka is milfoil. Ted points out that controversial milfoil concerns have different proponents, based on how people like to use the lake. People who enjoy swimming and boating want clear water. From an angler’s perspective, he says he is experiencing “the best fishing this lake has ever seen.” He is deeply concerned about ecology and hopes that careful research is done first so “they don’t get too crazy with their chemicals.”

Finally, if you’ve ever enjoyed a delicious fish dinner prepared with Shore Lunch breading, thank Ted. He owned the brand and successfully promoted it to get that great taste to the tables of millions of fishing families.