AMFF partnered with the Southwest Missouri Fly Fishers Club to provide a day of free fly-tying demonstrations and instruction on February 18, from 10 am to 2 pm, just outside the newest AMFF campus in Springfield, MO, inside the Bass Pro Shops and Wonders of Wildlife Museum complex. In addition to the tying lessons provided by numerous volunteers from the club, hosts Chris and Amanda Miller spent the day offering fly casting lessons as well, using both an Echo Micro Practice Rod designed by Tim Rajeff, and a full-size vintage bamboo rod, utilizing the large space at the entrance of the Springfield campus.

From the start of the event to the end, Amanda Miller interacted with a wide range of casters, from the very young to the young at heart, teaching the basics of casting to eager participants. Chris Miller shared his advanced casting skills with those already familiar with fly casting with equal success. He pulled double duty when he joined other SMFFC members behind the tying desk to share his knowledge and spend time on Facebook Live while whipping up his signature fly patterns.

A woman kneels on the floor as she helps a young girl get a feel of fly casting. The girl's parents look on, smiling.

AMFF tours of the Springfield campus were offered at the top of each hour during the event, which were also well received by those in attendance. Numerous visitors were eager to share stories of interactions with Joan Wulff and Lefty Kreh, both featured in a film highlighting their casting skills that greets visitors when entering the museum, with others offering stories about local and regional fly-fishing luminaries such as Dave Whitlock and Jim Rogers.

By all measures the event was a success, running well past the scheduled 2 pm, with the volunteers engaging with visitors until nearly 5 pm. AMFF wishes to thank SMFFC president Bill Butts, members Chris and Amanda Miller, and all the SMFFC members that spent time teaching and tying: Phil Boren, John Bush,  Russ Doughty, Dave Koellner, Jessi Louann, Jarrod Mathena, Deb McFarland, Marta Norman, Alan Reed, Dennis Stead, Terry Tanner (Terry spent the early session on our Facebook Live segment), and Ron Ward.

A group of kids and adults watch a woman and two men tie flies.

Photo gallery

More images from Missouri. All photos in this piece courtesy of Chris Miller.