BETHEL — The seventh annual Western Maine Fly Fishing Expo will take place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, March 17, in a new location: the Gould Academy Field House. Organizers state it will be bigger and better than ever.

The theme is “Women in Fly Fishing,” but there will be plenty of interest to men and young folks as well. The expanded exhibition hall will have more than 50 exhibitors, including fly shops, guides and outfitters, sporting camps, fly-tiers, rod-builders, artists, authors, fishing and conservation organizations, and camp- and fishing-related accessories and services.

Special guest Carrie Stevens will appear at the Upper Dam Fishing Camp, demonstrating her in-hand method of tying Rangeley’s favorite trout and salmon flies and discussing life at Upper Dam.

The seminar and presentation program has expanded to include a panel discussion and Q&A period with several prominent Maine fly fisherwomen, who will discuss their involvement in the sport, explain why they believe more women should become involved and answer questions.

There will also be presentations on the “Effects of Climate Change on Brook Trout in the Western Mountains of Maine,” “History of Fly Rods in America,” “Maine’s Mythical Blue Back Trout/Arctic Char,” “Fishing High Pressure Waters” and fly fishing in neighboring Canadian provinces.

New this year will be an indoor casting area where those wishing can “test drive” new rods. Fly shops and rod reps will have a selection of rods available. Master Casting Instructor Macauley Lord will present a “Fly Casting Tuneup — Casting Instruction from Beginner to Expert,” and there will be other casting instructions and demonstrations throughout the day

There will be a kids’ fly-tying bench and each child who ties a fly will be entered in a raffle for beginners’ fly-tying kits. A large selection of fishing-related items will be included in the silent auction and there will be many raffles held on the exhibition floor.

This is the Mollyockett Chapter of Trout Unlimited primary annual fundraiser and allows members to conduct cold water conservation, preservation and restoration projects, as well as youth education, adult education and veterans’ fly fishing, fly-tying and conservation programs.

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