Festival Classes

A variety of both paid and free classes will be offered at this year’s 3rdh Annual Texas Fly Fishing & Brew Festival. Unless otherwise noted, all classes and lectures mentioned in the festival program are included in the admission fee. All casting classes are held inside. This includes all Boy Scout Fly Fishing Merit Badge Classes which are provided free of charge to active and participating Boy Scouts who register in advance.

Free fly tying instruction will be available throughout the weekend. We’ll also be offering a free cooking class taught daily by author and guide Matt Supinski.

Please read the course descriptions carefully, and pay attention to class dates, as well as locations and start times. Many of this year’s new specialty classes are held on Friday before the festival officially opens.

Advanced Fly Casting Skills—Understanding Techniques with Mac Brown

This specialty course is designed specifically for experienced fly casters who wish to take their casting and instructing abilities to an advanced level. The class is designed for those who want to improve their game on the water or share this knowledge with others as a mentor, coach, and fly casting instructor. This program will meet and exceed what is expected on the FFI CI and MCI instructor requirements. Topics covered will include but are not limited to: Intent and Fly Casting, Understanding the Body Movements for Successful Rod Load, Pantomime Used in Teaching, Fly Casting Myths Debunked, Skills Needed for Teaching Others, Skill Sets from the CI Test, and MCI Tasks.

The class will run from 8 AM-5:30 PM on Friday, March 22, 2019, which is the day before the festival opens. The classroom portion of the course will begin in the festival hotel conference room at the Fairfield Inn & Suites (3415 Premier Drive, Plano, Texas). There will be a break from 12-1:30 for lunch, and the casting portion of the course will then reconvene on the festival grounds in front of the Plano Event Center (2000 E Spring Creek Pkwy, Plano, Texas). Please dress accordingly for the casting portion of this class, as it will be held outside REGARDLESS of the weather.

The class cost is $475, which includes a complimentary weekend pass to the festival. Minimum 4 students; maximum 10 students. Students who complete the course will be given a certificate of achievement and receive a personalized autographed copy of the instructor’s latest book.   

For more information on this class click here.

Freestone First Aid with Mike Tayloe

The core of the Freestone First Aid course is first aid in the wilderness/remote environment focusing on: Quick Patient Assessment, Life Threats, Common Medical Emergencies, Environmental Emergencies, Critical Thinking Skills, and Hands-On Skills for treatment of , and moving patients.

This course is designed specifically for fly fishing outfitters and guides as well as for individuals who want confidence in their first aid skills and who may have limited access to reasonable or delayed emergency response. Students will also receive CPR training and an American Heart Association Adult CPR Certification, pending a positive completion of the course.

The course will be taught by Mike Tayloe, Nationally Registered Paramedic and owner of Finns West, from 8 AM-5:30 PM Friday, March 22, 2019, which is the day before the festival officially opens. The class will be held at the Plano Event Center, 2000 E Spring Creek Pkwy, Plano, Texas (class room TBA). Practical labs include moving patients on and off boats/skiffs; thus, students need to wear appropriate clothing since much of this class will be held outdoors.

The class cost is $175, which includes complimentary admission to the festival on Saturday. Minimum 8 students; maximum 14 students.

For more information on this class click here.


Course Description: Advanced Techniques for Fishing Tailwaters & Tactical Approaches to Giant Browns with Matt Supinski

This specialty course taught by author and guide Matt Supinski is designed specifically for fly anglers who wish to advance their knowledge of fishing rivers characterized by dams, or those generally referred to as tailwaters. Tailwaters have environments suitable for trout all year long, because water released from dams and/or similar impoundments is much colder than traditional freestone streams. Supinki garnered the research for this class fishing tailwaters extensively throughout the United States, and particularly the famed trout streams of Pennsylvania with his mentor, fly angling legend Charlie Fox. Supinki has also fished across many of the British Isles and also in Europe. His course will cover a wide variety of topics, including: How to best to enter the river and why, appropriate fly selection, gear needs, techniques for identifying large brown trout lies, and, how to land large browns when hooked.


The class cost is $175, which includes complimentary admission to the festival on Saturday. Minimum 4 students; maximum 10 students. Students also receive a personalized autographed copy of the instructor’s latest book Atlantic Salmon-Brown Trout Nexus.   

For more information on this class click here

Course Description: May Flies & Micro-Brews with Peter Stitcher

Join Aquatic Biologist Peter Stitcher for an interactive and in-depth class on entomology for today’s fly angler, and learn how to “Match the Hatch” in two minutes or less!  This two-hour long class will be held both Saturday and Sunday from 1-3 PM on the festival grounds. Participating students will receive a coupon for a complimentary Texas micro-brew (which can be enjoyed during class), as well as 10 trout flies allowing the participants to follow each hatch as they are discussed. Students must have ID checked prior to entering the class, in compliance with TABC law. The class cost is $40. Maximum seating is 50 students.

For more information on this class click here

Beginners Fly Casting Class instructor TBA

This co-ed class is for beginners with little to no experience fly fishing. Students will learn all the basic mechanics of fly casting. The lecture portion of the class is done in a group; each student will receive individualized instruction. Students should bring their own rods; rods can be provided with advance notice if needed. The class will meet just outside of the admissions/ticket counter.  All classes will be held outside regardless of the weather. This class cost $75, maximum of 10 students , this class doesn’t include admission to the festival.

For more information click here.

Advanced Casting Classes with Ed Jaworowski

Those who have been fly casting for years but long to take their skills to the next level should check out this class. Ed has written widely on casting and recently completed a casting video with his mentor and close friend Lefty Kreh. He can help experienced anglers learn the techniques that will enable them to gain greater line speed and distance in a variety of settings. Students will also learn how to more effectively cast into wind and cast large wind-resistant flies. Proper foot and arm control will be addressed. Students will meet their instructor at near the admissions counter. All classes will be held outside.


For more information click here.

Advanced Nymph Fishing Tactics with Jason Randall

This class is designed with the express purpose of teaching the student techniques and skills needed to become an effective nymph angler. Nymph fishing is commonly used when anglers don’t see any surface action even though fish (especially trout) are feeding. Jason Randall, author of books and articles in numerous national publications, is an acknowledged nymphing expert. In this class Randall will teach students how to avoid nymphing pitfalls and what to do to greatly increase nymphing success. The lecture portion of this class is open to the public and will take place at the festival. Students who have paid for the application portion of the course will receive 90 minutes of additional instruction. Students who register for this class must bring their own fly rod and reel outfit with them for the outside casting portion of the class. This class costs $75, only 10 spots are available.

For more information click here.

Casting Big Flies: Fighting Big Fish with Blane Chocklett

Casting Big Files for Big Fish is a class for fly anglers preparing to fish or be guided on waters for species like Musky, Pea Cock Bass, Pike, and other large freshwater fish. These same techniques can be applies to fishing for large Browns and larger Smallmouth Bass. Fishing for larger species often requires quick decision-making and efficiency in presenting the fly accurately. This class helps prepare the students to not only pick the right pattern for the species at hand, but also enable them to cast it as well. This class costs $75 and doesn’t include admisison, only 10 spots are available.

For more information click here.

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For more information contact Festival Director Beau Beasley at Fishutopia@comcast.net, or call 703-402-8338.