Fly Fishing Film Tour coming to Alpena Saturday, Feb. 24

Courtesy Photo Tylor Witulski, owner of MothBear Outfitters in Alpena, holds up a brown trout he caught while fly fishing on the Manistee River in northern Michigan.

ALPENA — The 18th annual Fly Fishing Film Tour (F3T) is back on the road with a stellar selection of short films that are sure to get you fired up for upcoming season.

The F3T is the original and largest fly fishing film event of its kind.

“This is the first time it’s going to be in Northeastern Michigan,” said Tylor Witulski, who owns MothBear Outfitters, the primary host and sponsor of the event. “It’s a collaborative thing to just get people who are like-minded into the same room and see what kind of interest we have here in the Alpena/Northeast Michigan area as it pertains to fly fishing.”

Join other anglers and outdoor enthusiasts for an evening of fly fishing entertainment on Saturday, Feb. 24 at the Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Center in Alpena.

Tickets are $25, which includes a baseball cap and swag bag. Proceeds from the event will go to the Headwaters Chapter of Trout Unlimited to help support projects local to Northern Michigan.

Doors will open at 5 p.m. and the 10,000-square-foot exhibit space will be open for attendees to roam and check out the history of the local shipwrecks among other educational exhibits.

At 5:30 p.m., you can enter the theater area for an introduction and a few guest speakers.

The film will begin at 6 p.m. and run for approximately 2 hours. There will be a short 5-10 minute intermission halfway through the show. The film will wrap up around 8:10 p.m. and raffle and door prizes will be announced at the end of the show. The event is planned to conclude at 8:30 pm.

There will be an opportunity to talk with some local fishing guides as well as check out some gear from MothBear Outfitters and Trout Kamp Coffee during the event. Beverages and food are planned to be available with proceeds also going to the Headwaters Chapter of TU.

Local sponsors include MothBear Outfitters out of Alpena, Rivers East Fly Fishing out of Oscoda, Kevin Wray Financial Services out of Pinconning, Ausable River Outfitters out of Mio, and True North Trout out of Petoskey.

“Some other local people have provided support, like Pepsi out in Lachine has donated beverages to support the event, and we’re getting some pizza donated from Mancino’s,” Witulski said. “We’ve also had some monetary donations from people that go into fly fishing. Tarkington Family Dentistry has put some money up to help bring the event to Alpena, as well as some other companies that do financial advisor stuff.”

For more updates, go to flyfilmtour.com or follow F3T on social media at @flyfishingfilmtour.

Witulski talked about starting MothBear Outfitters as an online store based out of Alpena.

“My wife and I started MothBear about two years ago now,” he said. “We operate our shipping facility out of a second building that we have on our property. We have a ton of stuff in inventory, from shirts, flies, fly fishing gear, we have a coffee brand, Trout Kamp Coffee Co.”

Proceeds from every bag of coffee they sell go to the Great Lakes Chapter of Trout Unlimited to help protect cold water species, river and stream restoration, and keeping invasive species out of the Great Lakes and surrounding waters.

He said they have plans to eventually have some sort of storefront, but at this time they are operating fully online, which has been going well.

“We ship all over the country,” he said. “We have a decent following here in Michigan, but most of our orders, right now, come from out of state.”

Visit mothbear.com.


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