Thousands expected for Bass Pro Shops job fair in Harlingen

Cold bottles of water came in handy Monday hopeful applicants such as Alex Miranda of Brownsville and several of his friends waited in line.

The group braved the heat in Harlingen, all for the chance to meet with a Bass Pro Shops representative.

He was one of the thousands that showed up at Casa Del Sol on Madison Street vying for a job.

The average wait to interview with a representative was about three hours, but after three months of being unemployed, Miranda said it was worthwhile.

"I TMve gone everywhere (looking for a job), (South Padre) Island, Schlitterbahn (Beach), restaurants, customer service call centers, even out here to Dish (Network), Miranda said. it's very hard to find a job."

Miranda was hoping the clean-cut look and people skills would help get him the job he desperately needs.

"It's very important (to get the job), Miranda said. I mean not having a job, you don TMt have any money - you struggle with gas, no food - you definitely have to have a job some kind of income coming in."

Bass Pro Shops General Manager Homer Saenz said he expects over 6,000 applicants during the three-day job fair.

However, only about 475 of them will get the job.

He said the store will not only bringing a new, world-class experience for the entire Rio Grande Valley, but also opportunities.

"Obviously there's an opportunity - we're going to be employing 350 store employees, 125 restaurant employees - so that's about 475 employees we're looking to bring into Bass Pro," Saenz said.

Further back in the line, was Elena Gonzalez, who said she has been unemployed for a year.

She hadn't even had her turn at an interview, but already she was thankful for the impact Bass Pro Shops will have on the unemployed in the Valley.

Just the jobs - that's already a big one, a big help," Gonzalez said.

The Bass Pro Shops Job Fair continues Tuesday and Wednesday starting at 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Casa Del Sol located at 221 E. Madison St., in Harlingen.

Bass Pro Shops representatives will schedule interviews as the day allows.

General Manager Homer Saenz said they are looking

to hire the most energetic and motivated applicants.

They will also look towards hiring in the future.

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RAW VIDEO: Three-Hour Wait Bass Pro Shop Job Fair