After 43 years of fishing tales, Jack Martin is ready to retire |

After 43 years of fishing tales, Jack Martin is ready to retire

Sara Thompson

Dan Thrift / Tahoe Daily Tribune Jack Martin is retiring after more than 40 years of running the Outdoorsman and Sportsman stores.

After more than 43 years of work between the Outdoorsman and the Sportsman, Jack Martin is moving into retirement.

Martin will be leaving the business to Sean Sweeney and Scott Shehadi, who purchased the Sportsman from Martin and Rick Muller.

The Outdoorsman was a sporting store that used to be in the Grocery Outlet building. When the store closed, the Sportsman opened and has been operating ever since. The store provides sporting goods for all seasons as well as expert fishing reports.

Martin said his wife used to watch Sweeney when he was a kid, and that he has known Shehadi’s father for a long time. He’s glad the opportunity came up for Sweeney and Shehadi to take over the store.

In honor of Martin’s years spent at the store, Shehadi said they’re playing host to a barbecue at the store for Martin’s retirement party. He said they will have fish and beef, just in case they don’t catch enough fish.

“We’re just trying to spread the word for people to come say goodbye to Jack,” Shehadi said.

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Martin said he’ll miss his friends at the job, and that it’s nice they’re throwing him a party.

And if you stop by the farewell party, chances are Martin will tell you a good story.

Because Martin has lived here since 1938, he has many stories to tell, and that’s one thing co-worker Alan Brown will miss.

“I’ll miss his company, and his stories,” Brown said. “His group of friends spans from here to Alaska.”

Martin said he has taken many people out fishing over the years, including an astronaut and cosmonaut. After the first space venture between Russia and the United States in 1975, Harrah’s brought the two men to Lake Tahoe. Martin said they only caught three or four fish that trip.

And almost 25 years ago, Martin said he took the Louisiana governor fishing when Sahara Tahoe, now the Horizon Casino Resort, hosted a governor’s convention. At the time, the event had an assassination scare, so when they went fishing, Martin said officers from Fish and Game, the sheriff’s office and the Coast Guard came along.

Over the years, Martin said the fishing is as good as it used to be, but since two-stroke engines haven’t been allowed on the lake since the late 1990s, fewer people go out on boats because four-stroke engines are more expensive for people to own.

“You used to have 100 to 150 boats, and now it’s 25 to 30 boats,” Martin said.

Even though Martin plans to spend his time traveling and fishing, he said he’ll stop in at the store from time to time.

“I’ll be back to check in and make sure they’re doing a job,” Martin said.