Generations of Service
Locally owned and operated, a true family business, EZ Bait and Tackle owner Gary Bevell founded EZ as "just a hobby" but later realized that he had created a fishing tackle store with a "WOW" factor. At least once a week a customer states that they are truly amazed with how much fishing tackle there is in what appears to be such a small building from the outside. You don’t understand the amount of fishing tackle and expertise in the store until you walk around for a “long while” and absorb the fishing atmosphere.
With an inventory representing all the quality brands of US fishing gear, the store is truly a visual representation of a “Who’s Who” in US fishing tackle. Brands carried by E-Z include international lines like Shimano, Penn, Berkley, Fin-Nor, Okuma, Abu Garcia, Fenwick, St. Croix, G-Loomis, and Calcutta, as well as regional favorites like Big Cat Fever, TFO, Cashion, Honey Hole, Danny Joe’s, Deep Creek, and Billy Phillips.
Because of its central NC location, EZ is frequented by anglers from all areas of the state traveling to fishing locations in both fresh water and salt water throughout eastern North Carolina. Anglers head down US 70 toward the Crystal Coast region; others go south on Hwy 117 to the Cape Fear area and others head east on US 64 and 264 to the Outer Banks. That means anglers shopping in the store run the gamut from offshore big game fishing to bank fishing in the upper portions of the Neuse River.
“One of the truly unique things about our store is that fishing tackle is our only focus. We do not sell guns and we do not sell ammunition or other hunting equipment. But we do offer everything you can possibly think of for fishing! We’re pretty sure we offer the most complete line of fishing tackle in the state, and possibly in the entire Southeast.” “I strongly believe that one of the keys for the success of any retail business is having merchandise to sell. Our goal from day one has been to have whatever a fisherman needs in stock…in a bountiful supply…and at a fair price, and to back that up with exceptional customer service,” Gary said.
“For EZ Bait & Tackle, customer service means being open when a customer wants to go fishing or to prepare for a fishing trip, providing expert advice when a customer asks a question and serving each customer with a friendly attitude.” “That means we are open for business from 7am-7pm Mon-Sat and 8am-6pm Sundays, 362 days a year closing Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas Day. The fishermen who come to our store work different schedules, so some fish early in the day and some go fishing at night. We need to be here with whatever they might need, whenever they need to shop to make their trip a success,” he added.
Gary is a long-time veteran of the fishing tackle business, having grown up in Chase City, Virginia, where his family ran a tackle store on Buggs Island Lake.
The current store was a gas station in a previous life and was converted to a tackle store in 1998 under different management. Then, in 2004, Gary retired from his auto parts business, turned it over to his son, and took over operations of the store. Over the years, the original building has been added onto several times, resulting in a unique room-to-room floor layout that gives it the flavor of an old country store. But as Adam Farlow of Randleman said after shopping at EZ for the first time, “I have never seen so much fishing tackle in one place. If you can’t find it here, you probably are not going to find it anywhere!”
On January 1, 2016 Gary's son, Dwayne Bevell took over day-to-day operations of EZ Bait and Tackle. Dwayne strives to keep EZ running the same way his father did, by helping each customer and having the tackle "for all your fishing needs". Dwayne is keeping it a family oriented business and you will often see his two sons Jaden and Maddox in the store helping customers.
The EZ Crew has survived several Hurricanes and Floods from being so close to the Neuse River in Wayne County. Hurricane Matthew was the worst of the shops history with flood waters reaching 48” in the store. Dwayne said, “Due to the community, and the efforts of the crew at the shop - EZ Tackle has continued to flourish and the inventory will continue to grow. The folks in Wayne County are definitely NC Strong!”