Mac Brown of Mac Brown Fly Fishing & Guide School was the first full-time fly fishing guide in Western North Carolina. Educating fly anglers is Brown’s burning passion; he fulfills that role as an Associate Professor at Western Carolina University. He is the author of Casting Angles, and in 2017 was inducted into the Fly Fishing Museum of the Southern Appalachians Hall of Fame. When not on campus or on the stream, Brown teaches specialty casting classes all over the country. He’s a certified Master Casting Instructor with Fly Fishers International, and has served as a coach for multiple fly casting competitive anglers. Brown is on the pro-staff of Sage, Regal Vice, Simms, and Ross Reels, among other national brands. This year we are delighted to offer Brown’s “Advanced Fly Casting for Instructors” class. This specialty class will be held at the festival hotel on Friday, the day before the festival. This day-long class has very limited seating and includes a weekend pass to the festival. Brown will also be speaking at the festival.

For 30 years Blane Chocklett has fished and guided Virginia’s famed rivers, including the James, Roanoke, Jackson, and New. He has chased trout, stripers, and small and largemouth bass, and has become an authority on landing the apex predator of the freshwater world, musky. When not guiding, Chocklett enjoys tying flies and creating new, innovative patterns, many of which are sold in fly shops throughout the country. Some of his better known patterns include the Gummy Minnow, T-Bone, and the Gummy Tarpon Worm. Recently Chocklett has collaborated closely with Flymen Fishing Company to create the Fish-Spine, a series of specifically-designed articulated shanks that allow tyers to create multi-jointed, highly articulated streamers. The result is his revolutionary Game Changer, which catches both fresh and saltwater species all over the world. When not guiding Chocklett serves as a consultant and brand ambassador for a host of companies including but not limited to Temple Fork Outfitters, Scientific Anglers, Patagonia, Fishpond USA, Renzetti/RD Distribution,  and Hog Island Boatworks. Be sure to say hello to him in the TFO booth at this year’s festival.

Cameron Cipponeri has been fishing since his childhood in Northern Michigan. He moved to Colorado more than 15 years ago, where he has called Frying Pan Anglers his adopted home. Cipponeri loves all waters, from Florida and Louisiana to Argentina, from small streams to the big waters of the Colorado River. Guided angling trips–both floats and wades–are only one aspect of his guiding experience: Cipponeri also guides upland bird hunting trips and hosts guide schools, fishing camps, and kids’ clinics. He has been married to Kelly for 16 years, and loves to fish with daughter Addison on his days off.

Originally from Dallas, Kristian Cole attended Texas A&M Corpus Christi, where he did a lot of poling the flats around Port Aransas for redfish and fishing the jetties for Texas tarpon, jacks, Spanish mackerel, and king mackerel. He also spent time offshore working as a deck hand and fishing all over the Gulf of Mexico. Now back in Dallas, Cole is a critical part of the sales and education teams at Tailwaters Fly Fishing Company. Some of his favorite places to fish for trout are Bozeman, Montana, and Woodland Park, Colorado. We’re delighted to have Cole speak on effective patterns at this year’s festival at our first ever, Bourbon & Bass Bugs Class. Seating is quite limited so don’t miss your chance to take advantage of this cool class.

Lara Ducker is from the Texas Hill Country town of Kerrville. With over 16 years of fishing experience, her passion for fishing started at a young age and grew even more when she discovered fly fishing. Having this love and passion for fly fishing, Ducker enjoys instructing and helping newcomers into the sport whenever given the chance. Lara’s warm smile and welcoming personality has made her a real asset as a staff member at Tailwaters Fly Fishing Company in Dallas. Take a few minutes to chat with her and find out more about how to get started in fly angling at this year’s Women and the Future of Fly Fishing Meet & Greet. This special event is held on Saturday at this year’s Texas Fly Fishing & Brew Festival.

Jerry Hamon is an avid fly angler, fly tyer, and dedicated kayaker who loves nothing better than patrolling the local waterways of Texas looking for his next trophy bass. He is President of both the Texas Council of Fly Fishers International and the Mariner-Sails Kayak Fishing Club. Hamon is serving his second term on the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Freshwater Fisheries Advisory Committee and was recently appointed to serve as its Chairman. He’s a certified Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Angler Education Area Chief/Instructor and enjoys fishing tournaments when his schedule allows. Be sure to take in Hamon’s class “Fly Fishing from a Kayak” both days of the festival in cooperation with Mariner-Sails.

Ed Jaworowski is an International fly fishing authority, writer, photographer, and editorial consultant. He has authored four books, is working on his fifth, was a contributing writer for several others, and has published hundreds of articles in more than 20 journals. In addition to the USA, many of his writings and photographs have been published in England, Spain, Norway, Germany, Hungary, Italy, and Japan. He is most noted as a casting coach; Lefty Kreh called him “the best teacher of fly casting that I have ever known.” He serves as a casting and tackle consultant on the national advisory team of Temple Fork Outfitters in Dallas. In recent years he teamed with Lefty to produce a comprehensive DVD, The Complete Cast, for TFO. Ed, who has been fly fishing and fly tying since the 1950s, has given hundreds of classes and demonstrations around the country and abroad for nearly 40 years. He has extensive experience in fresh and saltwater venues around the the Western Hemisphere, pursuing sunfish to sailfish, trout to tuna. He has been honored by several TU chapters, and was inducted into the Pennsylvania Fly Fishing Museum in Carlisle in 2014. In the same year, he received the first Izaak Walton Award presented by the American Fly Fishing Museum in Manchester, Vermont, and in 2018 was awarded the FFI Casting Board of Governors Award for Lifetime Achievement in Teaching Fly Casting. For 40 years, Ed was a professor of Latin language and literature as well as Roman history and law at Villanova University. He was recently listed by Fly Fisherman magazine as one of the top 50 influential fly anglers of the last 50 years. He resides with his wife Michele in the Philadelphia suburbs.

Landon Mayer’s angling success is fueled by an addiction to pursuing large trout with small flies and lightweight fly-fishing equipment. Mayer enthusiastically teaches and demonstrates his techniques and on-river knowledge to fellow anglers and has developed innovative strategies for sighting, hooking, and landing selective trout. He shares these times and secrets in his books 101 Trout Tips: A Guide’s Secrets, Tactics, and Techniques; Colorado’s Best Fly Fishing; Sight Fishing for Trout; and How to Catch the Biggest Trout of Your Life, in addition to two DVDs: Landing the Trout of Your Life and Weapons of Bass Production.  His articles have appeared in such publications as American Angler, Southwest Fly Fishing, and Field and Stream. As an ambassador in the fly-fishing industry, Mayer represents several lines including Simms; he is also a royalty fly designer for Umpqua Feather Merchants. He is an advisory team member of Simms, Bauer Reels, R.L. Winston, Scientific Angler, Smith Optics, Fishpond, and Yeti.

Wayne McGee‘s lifelong dream has been to run a world-class fishing operation on a prolific river system in Alaska’s Bristol Bay. Luckily for his many clients, McGee’s dream came true! For the past 18 years, McGee has fished across Alaska–including his “home water,” the Alagnak River, where you’ll find his Alaska Trophy Adventures Lodge. McGee doesn’t limit his fishing to Alaska, though: he has pursued everything from tigerfish and Nile perch in the Congo and Nile Rivers of Africa, to Atlantic salmon and sea trout in Norway and Scotland. In a former life McGee owned a charter boat company based in Senegal, West Africa, where he chased blue marlin, tuna, and sailfish. Today his heart is firmly fixed in Alaska’s Bristol Bay and the wild Alagnak River–and he’s eager to share the region’s beauty and bounty with you!

Tim O’Neill, who began fly fishing at ten, is the founder and owner of O’Neill’s Fly Fishing, an online community dedicated to all aspects of fly fishing culture. For three decades his passion for the quiet sport has carried him through many parts of the industry including retail sales, commercial fly tying, lecturing, seminar teaching, and guiding. He recently became the owner of the Nor-vise fly tying system. O’Neill’s fly fishing exploits have been published in Out and About Delaware and Delaware Today, and he’s also been a guest on NPR. O’Neill considers himself an educator first: he loves nothing better than to help others learn more about this great sport. When asked what is his favorite fish to catch, his response is always the same: “The one on the end of my tippet.” Attendees can reach O’Neill to discuss all things fly fishing at tim@oneillsflyfishing.com.

The Texas Fly & Brew warmly welcomes Plano’s own Kimberly Penick, who will speak at our Women and the Future of Fly Fishing Meet & Greet. When she was only 12, Penick’s dad Don took her backpacking and fishing in the Colorado mountains; the experience left a lasting impression. Today Penick oversees outreach efforts for Dallas-based Temple Fork Outfitters and coordinates TFO’s support of nonprofit organizations. Penick was recently recognized by Texas Parks & Wildlife for her ongoing efforts toward community-based outdoor education. She is a fly fishing instructor and active member of the nonprofit DIVA Women Outdoor Worldwide, teaching outdoor skills (like marksmanship and fishing) to women. In between volunteering, Penick makes time for the annual father-daughter outing that began her outdoor journey in the first place. Penick will be a panelist at this year’s Women and the Future of Fly Fishing Meet & Greet, held on Saturday.

Jason Randall, Temple Fork Outfitters national pro-staffer, has been an outdoor writer for the last 16 years. His feature articles appear regularly in American Angler, as well as Fly Fisherman, Eastern Fly Fishing, Northwest Fly Fishing, and many other outdoor magazines.  His first book, Moving Water: A Fly Fisher’s Guide to Currents (2012), studies the effects of current on trout, their prey species, and presentation, where vertical layers of current create drag and require adjustments to improve nymph fishing success. His second book, Feeding Time: A Fly Fisher’s Guide to What, Where and When Trout Eat (2013), focuses on matching your fishing strategies to the trout’s feeding strategies, especially when targeting large trout. His third book in the ‘Fly Fisher’s Guide’ trilogy, Trout Sense: A Fly Fisher’s Guide to What Trout See, Hear and Smell (2014), offers anglers the opportunity to know more about the quarry they seek. Randall’s fourth book, Nymph Masters: Fly Fishing Secrets from Expert Anglers, explores the depths of nymph fishing and advanced nymph-fishing techniques and incorporates tips and ideas from some of the leading experts in nymph fishing. He will be teaching a specialty class on nymphing at this year’s festival.

Karlie Roland grew up with a fly rod in one hand and a fly tying vise in the other. She spent her summers in Last Chance, Idaho, where her family has fished the Henry’s Fork for generations. Roland has traveled from the Rockies to the Pacific Northwest and from Patagonia to Cuba and Christmas Island in her ongoing search for trout, salmon, steelhead, and anything else that will eat her fly on the flats! A tireless advocate for fisheries conservation and watershed protection, Roland is a passionate angler and educator with extensive experience in leading fly fishing schools and hosted travel. Roland is a brand ambassador for Hardy and Patagonia. She guides for TroutHunter Lodge on the river that started it all: the Henry’s Fork. Roland will be a panelist at this year’s Women and the Future of Fly Fishing Meet & Greet, held on Saturday.

Mike Tayloe is the co-owner and Director of Operations of Finns West, a unique company in the fly fishing industry that provides Wilderness First Aid courses and Emergency Action Plan development for fly fishing lodges, outfitters, guides, and staff. He has combined his professions as a paramedic and fly fishing guide to provide a much-needed and often overlooked service for our industry. Tayloe has been providing remote medical support and wilderness medicine education as a wilderness/remote paramedic for over two decades, from Mount Everest to Antarctica. He guides for several outfitters in Colorado and spends his winters in Chilean Patagonia guiding for Lakutaia Heli Fishing Lodge on Cape Horn. New at this year’s festival is Tayloe’s Freestone First Aid class offered on Friday, March 22. This daylong course is perfect for guides and serious anglers who want to be prepared to respond to emergencies that occur on the river or in remote fishing locations. This course has very limited seating and includes training in CPR and admission to the festival.

Greg Thomas’ work regularly appears in national and regional publications, such as the New York Times and Big Sky Journal. He’s penned five books on fly-fishing, including Fly Fisher’s Guide to Washington and Fly Fisher’s Bible Montana. He is the former editor-in-chief of Fly Rod & Reel and the new editor-in-chief of American Angler. He lives in Missoula, Montana, at the base of the Rattlesnake Wilderness and just adjacent to the Bitterroot and Clark Fork rivers.

Timothy Urtiaga is the head guide and owner of Eagles Nest Fly Shack & Lodge. With more than a decade of experience in fly design and guiding, and with as much as 250 days a year on the water, Tim knows a thing or two about fly fishing for pike. Tim’s prowess as a guide has been featured in national publications like Southwest Fly Fishing and we’re pleased to have him presenting again this year. Don’t miss Tim’s talk on the history, biology, and techniques of fishing for trophy pike on the fly. After this talk, be sure to stop by Tim’s booth, and pick up the patterns and gear you’ll need to land a pike of a lifetime.

From his very first article in Field and Stream in 1968, Dave Whitlock has contributed his flyfishing art, photography and writing to many publications such as TU’s Trout Magazine, Flyfisherman Magazine, Fly Fishing and Tying Journal. He has written and illustrated five books:  Dave Whitlock’s Guide to Aquatic Trout Foods; the LL Bean Fly Fishing Handbook, the LL Bean Fly Fishing Handbook for Bass; Trout: A Compact Guide for Fly Fishers and Imitating and Fishing Natural Fish Foods for Lefty’s Little Library. In 2018, Dave and Emily together completed their new book titled Artful Profiles of Trout, Char and Salmon and the Classic Flies that Catch Them. Dave has also co-authored or made contributions to many other books, including The Fly-Tyer’s Almanac; The Second Fly-Tyer’s Almanac; Art Flick’s Master Flytying Guide; McClane’s Fishing Encylopedia; Migel’s Stream Conservation Handbook and Masters on the Nymph and others.  He has illustrated over 25 books including Steve Raymond’s Year of the Trout; Swisher and Richard’s new edition of Selective Trout; plus President Carter’s Outdoor Journal. Dave also demonstrates his flyfishing and teaching skills in seven videos and through guest appearances on televised flyfishing programs. One of Dave’s most notable contributions to wild trout management and preservation is the Whitlock-Vibert Box System — an in-stream trout egg incubator and nursery devise. Dave spent 7 years researching and developing this system. Today, under the sponsorship of the International Federation of Fly Fishers, the Whitlock-Vibert Box program is used throughout the world for introduction or enhancement of wild trout, char and salmon stocks.   Dave’s experience and his devoted and objective outlook on the whole spectrum of flyfishing has earned him consulting assignments from top companies such as Scientific Anglers, GLoomis Rods, Sage Rods, Simms Fly Fishing Products, LL Bean and Bass Pro. He also designed and directed the first 10 years of the LL Bean Fly-Fishing Schools. Dave has been inducted into the National Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame, the Arkansas Game& Fish Hall of Fame, the Fly Fishing Hall of Fame, the Trout Hall of Fame. Fly Fisherman Magazine recently included Dave as one of the ’50 Most Influential Fly Fishers in the Last 5 Decades’. We are honored to have Dave and his wife Emily join us at this year’s Texas Fly Fishing & Bew Festival.

For 15 years Dallas-based casting instructor, fly fisher, and fly tyer Rex Walker has been helping people improve their fly casting skills.  He has worked with many of the region’s fly fishing clubs, at fly fishing events across Texas, and with both Reel Recovery and Project Healing Waters. Walker is a Fly Fishers International-certified instructor and the fly casting coordinator for the Dallas Fly Fishers.  When not helping other fly fishers, Walker can often be found on Lake Texoma chasing black bass and striped bass on the fly.

A lifelong angler who has been fishing since he was four, Greg Welander first picked up a fly rod in 1998 and took up fly tying in 2004. Welander has been a fly tying instructor for the last nine years. Welander has fished for everything from rainbow trout on the Guadalupe River below the Canyon Dam tailrace to stripers on the Red River below Lake Texoma to redfish on the Lower Laguna Madre. Texas hill country’s streams and lakes are his local passion in between trips to the Texas coast for redfish. When not guiding or teaching, Welander is a manufacturer’s representative for a variety of national brands such as Renzetti, Dagon Apparel, Frog Hair, Monic Fly Lines, Seigler Reels as well as Thomas & Thomas.

Featured Fly Tyers

Kit Brown was raised in the Catskills and grew up fly tying and fishing the best streams on the East Coast, including the Beaverkill and the east and west branch of the Delaware River. Since then Brown has fished almost all of North America–and hopes he can complete that monumental task before he dies. He began tying Catskill pattern dry flies and eventually moved on to nymphs to catch more trout. Subsequently Brown developed–and continues to design–his own patterns, many of which are on his website tied2fly.com. Today Brown guides on the Lower Mountain Fork River with Beavers Bend Fly Fishing Guide Service and Chris Schatte.

Fly tyer Fishy Fullum spent 30 years working as a graphic artist and as an outdoor editor for the Tory Record and the Albany Times Union. In 1995 he retired from “real work” to pursue his fly tying passion full-time. Since retiring, Fishy has designed nearly 150 unique patterns to entice everything from bluegills to bonefish. His patterns are not just effective—they’re beautiful. But even though they may be suitable for framing, Fishy would prefer to see them on the end of your line. Along the way he’s shared much of this knowledge in his “Creative Tying” column published by Fly Tyer, the foremost fly tying publication in the United States. While you’re at the festival, stop by Fishy’s booth, watch him at the vice, and pick up a few pointers from a recognized tying expert. Better yet, sign up for one of his fly tying classes at this year’s festival, and learn firsthand how enthralling fly tying can be. Fishy Fullum is the author of Fishy’s Flies, Fishy’s Favorites, and Tying Flies with Common Household Materials.

At eight years old, Braden Miller taught himself to tie flies by watching Youtube and Instagram videos. Now 13, Miller has traveled the country chasing fish with his TFO fly rods and hand-tied flies. Current fave prey: muskie! He has tied flies at the Fly Fishing Expo in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, Lefty Kreh’s Tie Fest, and The International Fly Tyers Symposium. Miller was the youngest competitor in last summer’s iCast Iron Fly Competition in Orlando, and tied flies for the Project Healing Waters 2-Fly Tournament at Virginia’s Rose River Farms. This year he started a fishing club at his middle school, and with the support of his principal and science teacher, helped bring in Trout in the Classroom, which teaches students about fishing and conservation. Miller is TFO’s first Junior Ambassador, a Norvise team member, and an ambassador/pro-staff member for Fly Life Company, Flymen Fishing Co., District Angling, Fair Flies, and most recently, Catch Cam Nets. Follow Miller on Instagram at flyfisher0906, on Facebook as Braden.Miller.0906–and watch for his upcoming YouTube channel!

Allen Rupp has been tying flies for almost 30 years. Growing up around the District of Columbia, his first fish on the fly were Potomac River smallies. Rupp now owns and operates Fly On The Water, and while he lives in New York City, his flies have caught fish all over the world–from Belize, Chile, Canada, Mexico, and the UK to Colorado, Montana, New York, Wisconsin, and beyond. Lately saltwater fish–and especially snook–have been taking up most of his time. This is Rupp’s first appearance at the Texas Fly Fishing & Brew Festival, and we are pleased to have him. He’ll be tying flies and doing demos at this booth throughout the weekend.

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