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The winter that does not want to end may finally give up its hold on Lake Minnetonka this week. Ice out is just in the nick of time for the Minnesota Bound-Ron Schara Crappie Contest and the next stop in the Evinrude-Ranger TESTRIDE™ program on May 4, 2013. Held at Minnesota’s iconic Lord Fletcher’s in Spring Park, TESTRIDE is free and open to the public from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday. A variety of Ranger Boats powered with Evinrude outboards, await at the marina docks on the northwest side of Lord Fletcher’s. Big news for Minnesotans is the chance to experience the ride of Ranger Boats’ new aluminum line for the first time, ever.

“This is a big opportunity and we’re excited to have one of our new aluminum boats on the water,” shared George Liddle of Ranger Boats. “There’s been so much interest in this new series, we’re proud to showcase the new 178c aluminum boat on the water with a 75 E-TEC Evinrude.” This is the first year of Ranger’s new aluminum line with seven models. “We have professional anglers on hand with a variety of boats to choose from, including the Fishermen Series 620 and 621, the Reata 1850, and the Z520C bass boat.” A cool, logo’d t-shirt is a complimentary gift for the first 50 to take a TESTRIDE.

“There are great incentives with TESTRIDE, much like boat show season,” shared Frank Carpenter of R & R Marine located in Shakopee, Minnesota. Even if folks are in more of a shopping mode than a buying mode, the experience on the water is worth the trip. The dealer has both new and used inventory. “Many customers custom-order a boat and use this experience to help make a future decision down the road.” Take advantage of up to $1500.00 in purchase incentives with sponsor’s products for TESTRIDE participants.

Liddle Marketing Company organizes the events, working in partnership with Ron Schara and the folks at MN Bound for the Crappie Contest, also at Lord Fletcher’s that day. “Everyone is excited to get on the water and scratch that itch for open-water fishing,” said Ron Schara, celebrity host of the now 45-year event and probably one of the best-known anglers in Minnesota. “It doesn’t matter what the forecast for weather or the forecast if fish will bite, we just want to get out there.” Crappie contestants and their families can take a ride in a Ranger to experience the quality of a Ranger Boat.

This year Janet Parker, Vice President of LMC and Bassmaster Champion has added a women-to-women boat use and ownership program entitled Women & Water-H2O. “Women anglers will mentor and educate other women at Lord Fletcher’s,” shared Janet. “We want ladies to walk away with new skills and confidence in using equipment like electronics and trolling motors and overall boat ownership.” “The enthusiasm for TESTRIDE is significant with this late spring,” shared Liddle. “The number of people we talk to just keeps growing as we not only showcase Ranger boats and Evinrude motors, but Minn Kota trolling motors, Talon shallow water anchoring systems, Humminbird electronics, iPilot navigation as well as Dobyns rods and Lakemaster digital mapping.

All aspects of the TESTRIDE program are free to the public plus, free t-shirts to the first 50 who take a TESTRIDE.

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