Ask Donnie Crain, president of the Grove Area Chamber of Commerce to sum up the impact made by the Bassmaster Elite tour coming to Grove/Grand Lake, and he uses one word - "enormous."

"This is a really big deal," Crain said. "During the tournament and the days leading to it, the tournament staff, anglers and many of their families [filled] hotel rooms, [ate] at local restaurants and [made] purchases at local stores, which made a major direct financial impact."

Crain said the spectators who came to watch the tournament - either on land during the launches and weigh-ins, or on the water following anglers, also made a positive impact on Grove and the surrounding Grand Lake communities.

Crain anticipates the ripple effect from the tournament will last longer than the final weigh-in on Sunday, April 29.

"Hosting the Bassmaster Elite sets Grand Lake's reputation apart from many other lakes," Crain said. "Recreational anglers aspire to fish this lake, just like the professionals do.

"These anglers - as individuals or participants in the multiple smaller tournaments on the lake - come to the Grand Lake throughout the year and for many years, because of the lake's reputation of hosting big-time tournaments like the Bassmaster Elite."

Crain said the impact will last far beyond the "direct impact" the four-day event had on the local economy. 

"These tournaments get exposure unheard of for a community our size, and attract countless of visitors to our area who may not visit otherwise," Crain said. "Many of whom later become second home owners or full-time residents.

"[It's] all because of Grand Lake's great fishing. [It's how many] first discovered [us] through our community hosting events like this."

Brent Malone, executive director for the Grove Convention and Tourism Bureau agreed. 

"Every fisherman wants to fish where the best fish," Malone said. "This brings anglers and different tournaments to our area.

"I talked to a guy [Tuesday] from Alabama that has always wanted to fish Grand Lake and he [came to visit] because of the Elites series."

Malone said he anticipates, when the final numbers are tabulated, the tournament will have made more than an $1 million impact in the community.

He said area residents should take pride in the fact that the Grove has been picked to host the elites five times in the last 12 years - which includes two Bassmaster Classics and three Elite Series tournaments.

"The economic impact that large tournaments bring is amazing," Malone said, adding beyond monetary impact, the tournament provides Grove with an immeasurable amount of national and global public exposure through ESPN and Bassmaster Live.