I hadn’t been to the Fly Fishing Show in years. It wasn’t due to indifference — mostly it was scheduling, and that I had made up my mind that my next visit would be in a professional capacity. This year the stars aligned (thanks for squeezing me in, Ben) and I did two days as a Destination Theater presenter in Marlborough, MA. (Cue up the “Theme from The Magnificent Seven”.)
My first gig was Friday at 2pm, and I got there early enough to be able to take a quick walk around the show floor, say hi to some old friends, and make some introductions to new ones. I also wanted to support my fellow local presenters, so I caught most of Rich Strolis’ Tying Flies for the Toughest Fish, and Strategies for Fishing Them. Rich likes to fish a basic emerger template for rising trout; he simply varies the size and color of the pattern to match the hatch. As a wet fly (and snowshoe rabbit fur) aficionado, I liked that.
Having no idea what to expect, I was pleasantly surprised by the crowd that gathered to see and hear Wet Flies 101. I counted close to forty people. If you were in attendance, thanks so much for coming out, and especially for laughing at all my jokes.
On the A Team. Good room, and an even better audience.
Saturday was a little dicey because of the impending doom generated by the approaching storm. However, fortune smiled upon me as the drive up and back were relatively snow-free. As I set up in an empty room at 9:45am, I realized that I might be presenting to just a few hardy souls. Not a chance. What started as a flurry turned into a measurable accumulation by showtime, and I want to thank everyone again for taking the time to come out. I stuck around to see some of Marla Blair’s The Hatch & Body Language of Trout for Choosing the Right Patterns. Marla’s explanation of how the rise forms translate into the feeding attitude of trout is something I have long embraced (and I think we both love stupid fish).
Can’t say you properly attended a show without buying something, so at 1pm I was walking back to my truck with a gorgeous red flatwing saddle I found buried in the piles at the Keough booth.
See you next year.
Still a couple slots open for next Saturday’s (January 30) tying class at UpCountry, “Wet Flies and Fuzzy Nymphs for the Farmington.” Call the store to register at 860-379-1952.
I’ll be on Fly Tyers’ Row at the CFFA Show on Saturday, February 6, Maneely’s Banquet Facility, 65 Rye St., South Windsor, CT. I’ll be there from show open until early afternoon. This is one of the best local shows anywhere. For more information and directions, visit http://www.ctflyfish.org.