Trout Unlimited is a national organization dedicated to protecting and improving cold water fishing resources. Our local chapter is a key building block and our local members volunteer their time, money and energy to improving cold-water fishing resources in New Hampshire. Almost all members love fly fishing, and related activities, such as fly tying.
A great night was had by our chapter members and friends at the Annual Conservation Fundraising Banquet at Fratello’s in Manchester, NH
The night started out with Ron Hamel as emcee and a spread of cheese and crackers, along with a generous fruit platter was available for munching.
Throughout the cocktail hour, guests were busy checking out the many raffles that were up for bid.
A total of 45 bucket raffles were offered with a great range of items to be won. Gift cards to jewelry were up for grabs. At the Live Auction table, there were vacation packages with a guided fishing trip, lodging on the Salmon River NY to beautifully framed chromolithographs by Sherman Foote Denton. The live auction was a new addition the banquet this year and seemed to be accepted by all. George Foster III CA, owner and operator of The Complete Auction really kept everyone’s attention throughout the night. George interacted with the bidders on each item which made the financial ending a success.
After a great meal and dessert, seven members were awarded for their outstanding service to the chapter throughout the year: Jim Norton, Burr Tupper, Mary Weiss, Dick Peterson, Mitch Kopacz, Mark Berling and Allison Gregory. These members have given the chapter countless hours over the past year and we hope they will continue to be a part of the chapter for many years to come. Without members like them, the chapter would not continue to keep many vital conservation programs that we are working on going and we wouldn’t be able to help support many outreach programs such as the NH Kids Trout Camp, Let’s Go Fishing program which includes Fly Fishing 101 and Fly Tying classes. The chapter is proud of our programs that we work on each year to protect and improving cold water fishing resources in New Hampshire.
This year many well-known guests to the chapter attended: Ben Nugent, NH Fish & Game Biologist, Eric Orff Retired Wildlife biologist for the NH F&G, Past F&G Commissioner, NH Outreach Consultant to the National Wildlife Federation, Jim Wilson Past President of Squan-A-Tissit Chapter TU Pepperell, MA. Kyle Glencross NH Fish & Game’s Let’s Go Fishing Program Coordinator, Yvonne Nanasi NH Kids Trout Camp Director, Tom Ives Chairperson for the NH TU Council and past President of Basil Woods Chapter, Mitch Kopacz of the Pelham Fish and Game Club.
At the closing of the banquet the annual Grand Raffle ticket winners were drawn. The Ruger 30/06 was won by Arnold Superchi, the 2 night stay and 2 with meals at Tall Timber Lodge was won by Burr Tupper and the Orvis Recon Fly Rod package was won by Helen Sowa. Congratulation to all the Grand Raffle winners and thank you for your support.
I would also like to thank all of the contributors for all the fine donations that we received this year. Without your donations, the fundraising banquet would not have been successful in funding many need conservation project that the chapter does. All donors will be posted on the Merrimack River Valley’s website for one year. To see a complete list go to www.merrimacktu.org.
And finally, I would like to thank all the nonmembers that attended and all the members of Trout Unlimited. Without you and your support there would not be funds for some great projects to be completed.
Ron Sowa, President
Download the banquet program.
2015 Youth Camp
Youth Trout Camp is conducted by the NH Trout Unlimited State Council and its chapters throughout the state. The five day camp teaches appreciation through the art and science of fly fishing. The Youth Camp is for ages 14-17 years of age. To apply please download the Camp Brochure.
The Merrimack River Valley Chapter of Trout Unlimited meets in Manchester, New Hampshire the second Tuesday of every month. Meetings are held at the Sweeney Post of the American Legion, 251 Maple Street. Guests and potential members are always welcome. Before most meetings there is fly tying starting at 6:30. The regular meeting starts at 7:30 pm and usually lasts until around 9:00 pm. Every meeting includes a program with guest speakers. In the past, guest speakers such as Thomas Ames and other fly fishing and fly tying experts present slide presentations on fly fishing, fly tying, entomology, Atlantic Salmon restoration, etc. In addition to outside speakers, members frequently present their fly fishing exploits in New Hampshire, Maine, Alaska, Montana and throughout New England.
In December, we hold the Holiday Social where members enjoy refreshments and bucket raffles and fly-swap. In the spring we hold the our Conservation Dinner fund-raiser with auction and raffles. Every spring we conduct learn to fly fish and fly tying classes for beginner and intermediates. In the Summer we take a break and instead of meetings, we have weekend fly-fishing day-trips to local waters.