News Archive

Union Sportsmen's Alliance Member Wins $25,000 Triton Bass Boat

Posted: 9/19/2008

As Lonnie Tinder, a member IUPAT local 86, knows too well, it’s tough to be a bass fisherman without a bass boat. Tinder resides in Phoenix, AZ, which he describes as a fisherman’s paradise with many mountain lakes to choose from.

As a long-time hunter and angler, Tinder takes full advantage of the outdoor opportunities available in Arizona, including the fishing. Without a boat, Tinder spends time with his wife and his brother fishing from the bank and in trout streams. “I used to always go fishing with somebody who had a bass boat – I love bass fishing!” said Tinder. “But lately, I haven’t had any friends with boats to go fishing with.”

Now, thanks to the Union Sportsmen’s Alliance (USA) and Triton Boats, bass fishing is back on the menu for Tinder, who learned in early June that he was drawn as the lucky winner of a brand new Triton 18 Explorer bass boat and a matching trailer.

The Union Sportsmen’s Alliance is North America’s premier hunting and fishing club exclusively for union members, retirees and their families. As a program of the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership (TRCP) and 20 AFL-CIO affiliated unions, including IUPAT, the USA extends union member benefits beyond the workplace to the woods and water. One of those benefits is ongoing giveaways for USA members, including firearms, knives, trips and the Triton boat.

According to Earl Bentz, the dynamic Founder and President of Triton Boats, “USA members are our customer base, and we’re proud of this association. Our boats are made in America, the Mercury engine is union made here in America and we’re excited to be able to support these union members here in North America.”

Tinder’s first thought upon learning he won a Triton boat and matching trailer valued at approximately $25,000 was “is this true or is somebody pulling my leg?” He knew, from visiting the website (, that the USA was giving away a boat, but he had never won more than a t-shirt or hat in his life. “Whenever these things are given away, it seems like it’s always someone back east. I just couldn’t believe I had won.”

Tinder’s wife, Debbie, was just as shocked about the news. “She thought I was just giving her a story,” said Tinder. “She’s become quite the angler, and she’s as excited as I am to get boating experience and to go bass fishing.”

With Arizona’s mild winters, Lonnie and Debbie can enjoy their new boat year-round, though they may have plenty of company. “My coworkers are all jealous, and a lot of my fellow union members have asked ‘when are we going fishing?’” said Tinder.

Winning the Triton bass boat powered by a Mercury engine further demonstrates just how well the USA fits Tinder’s union-outdoor lifestyle. “USA-made and union-made is something I always try to support because I know it is excellent quality,” said Tinder.

“The USA makes me even prouder to be an IUPAT member because the outdoors is something I love, and it’s nice to see that my union agrees with me. I would just like to thank the USA and Triton boats. This is fantastic—it’s hard to believe.”

Prize boat delivered and serviced courtesy of John Kenny and Complete Marine of Phoenix, AZ