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Media Contact: Larry Hodge, 903-676-2277, larry.hodge@tpwd.texas.gov [LH]

TPWD Website: http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us

TPWD News Release — Feb. 3, 2009

Fly Fish Texas Coming to Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center March 7

ATHENS, Texas — If you’ve ever thought about taking up fly-fishing, Fly Fish Texas is for you.

The annual event takes place this year March 7 at the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center (TFFC) in Athens. Show hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. All Fly Fish Texas activities are free with regular paid admission to the center.

"Fly Fish Texas is a great show and the only event of its kind," said Walter McLendon of Lufkin, who has organized the show since its beginning. "Other shows cater to people who are already fly-fishers, but we try to introduce fly-fishing to the public, and that is better."

A special feature of Fly Fish Texas this year will be classes designed specifically for youth ages six to 18. The classes will be taught by Bill Sargeant, other members of the Dallas Fly-Fishers and TFFC staff. At the conclusion of the class students will receive basic fly-fisher certification. An adult should accompany students to the class. Both morning and afternoon sessions will be offered, and attendance will be limited. Interested persons should meet at the TFFC admissions booth at least 15 minutes prior to class times of 10:00 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.

Fly Fish Texas focuses on helping people master the set of skills required for fly-fishing. Instructors hold classes throughout the day on everything from fly-casting to fly-tying to knot tying. Seminars give information on subjects ranging from how to fish specific bodies of water to tips and techniques for fishing for different species. Skilled fly-tiers make flies all day long. Anyone wanting to learn how can give it a try themselves or simply watch.

Casting is arguably the thing that attracts most people to fly-fishing, and Fly Fish Texas will offer casting instruction for everyone from the rank beginner to the advanced angler seeking the coveted Certified Casting Instructor (CCI) designation from the Federation of Fly Fishers. Master Fly-Casting Instructor Al Crise will head a team of volunteer instructors that will include the father-daughter team of Rex and Taylor Walker, both CCI candidates; Bill Hoot, CCI; Jim Bass, CCI candidate; and Ryan Watters and Sheila Anderson.

Fly Fish Texas differs from most outdoor shows in that the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center has several ponds and streams stocked with rainbow trout, largemouth bass, sunfish and channel catfish, and you can tie a fly, walk 50 steps and catch a fish with it.

Fly Fish Texas is sponsored by the Sabine River Authority, Holiday Inn Express-Athens and the Dallas Fly-Fishers.

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