2017 Midwest Fly Fishing Expo – Featured Guest Tyers

I am once again honored to be a Featured Guest Tyer at the Midwest Fly Fishing Expo this weekend, March 11th and 12th, in Warren, Michigan. This show is one of the best, if not THE best, fly fishing shows in the Midwest. To quote Ed Sullivan, “It’s going to be a really big show!” So make plans to head up and stop by and be sure to visit the FrankenFly table. I’ll be there!
See my previous post on more details of the show. See below to see the expanded list of Featured Tyers for this year’s show.
Thanks and I hope to see you there!

Captain Anthony Mule’ shop pro at Riverview Fly Shop in St. Clair, MI, started fly fishing in the canals behind his parent’s cottage on St. John’s Marsh at an the early age of 8. He taught himself how to tie flies with his father’s vise and salt water materials at the age of 12. He brings his young, fresh perspective to the fly tying community. He’s been self-taught at the art of fly tying and is not afraid to try new material and combine traditional patterns to come up with new patterns to expand the fly fisherman’s repertoire. His goal is to become a licensed guide and become a guide to foster more awareness of the fly fisherman outside of the traditional trout fishing and into the vast opportunities offered on the St. Clair waterways. This came one step closer this January 2017 when he became a licensed captain.

Chuck Furimsky visited the Midwest Fly Fishing Show at Southfield, Michigan, about 28 years ago. He enjoyed it so much, he returned to Seven Springs Mountain Resort, Pa., where he owned a retail shop that carried all leather goods. So speaking with the owner of the resort Chuck got permission to start his own fly show at the resort’s exhibit hall and patterned it after his experience at Southfield. It was an instant success and the start of a long future and many additional shows, from starting in Denver& ending in Lancaster Pa; many shows in between, with the largest show being in Somerset, NJ. Another great show creation of Chuck is the world’s largest show exclusively for tiers who attend from everywhere, including many overseas countries. That show is called the International Fly Tying Symposium and is sponsored by Fly Tyer magazine, and takes place the weekend before Thanksgiving in Somerset, N.J. His true passion was fly fishing and he was a student in George Harvey’s fly fishing credited class at Penn State. His tying is fostered by his 42 years in owning and working in his leather business. “I don’t know anyone here and only one person I met in England that ties flies with leather,” joked Chuck. You just have to stop by his table to see the patterns for trout, bass, all salt water fish, and his latest patterns he ties with his leather Turbo Tails, great for Pike, Muskie, Bass, and Walleye. 

John Satkowski resides in Toledo, Ohio, where he fishes for all fish that swim in the rivers and lakes of southeastern Michigan and northwest Ohio. An artist, fly tying demonstrator, and fly tying instructor, John shares his love of fly tying and fishing as often as he can. For the last fifteen years, he has focused on unlocking the secrets of smallmouth bass, carp, trout, and northern pike on the fly, chasing after them in the rivers and lakes of the Wolverine state and the glory waters of Montana. John is also an accomplished realistic tier and always tries to add a little realistic flare to his patterns. John is a pro tier for Flymen Fishing Company and a commercial tier for Rainy’s flies with patterns ranging from dry flies, nymphs, steelhead, streamers, and flies for the salt. John’s patterns often use creative fly materials and unconventional tying styles.

Hunter Hayes is Co-Owner/Guide at Wildwood Anglers in Ohio and is one of the many prodigies of the late deer hair master, Chris Helm. He started tying when he was 7 years old, and started tying with Chris when he was 13. His deer hair creations are more masters of artwork than fishing flies. Besides deer hair Hunter slings bobbins for all types of flies at his vise, from Warmwater, Trout, Steelhead, Salmon, and for Maumee Flies. You can contact Hunter at his email at crowhunter79@gmail.com


Steve Wascher caught his first Trout at the age of 3 ½, on a DRY FLY!! Steve is a third generation tier from Greenhurst, NY; and received basic instructions and guidance from his father; along with his grandmother in regards to tying. Steve is a well rounded tier, and enjoys all aspects of the art of fly tying; from creating a unique nymph, wet flies for steelhead, or his famed deer hair bugs for those Warmwater surprises. Besides tying Steve guides during the summer months for a wide range of Warmwater species and he enjoys writing articles as well; which have appeared along with his flies in Hatches Magazine, American Angler, and Mid-Atlantic Fly Fishing Guide. Steve is on the Pro Staff of Dyna King Vises; plus many others.

Jerry Regan; a 3rd generation fly tyer; is one of the true keepers of Michigan’s Fly Fishing History; along with being one of the best commercial fly tiers in the business. Just like Trout Unlimited, Jerry was born along the fabled Trout Waters of the Au Sable River near Grayling. As a kid he learned fly tying and fishing from Michigan’s Genuine Legends like Earl Madsen and Ernie Borcher. One thing unique for the patterns Jerry ties, he has never went with synthetics that have flooded the market place, but have stuck with the original materials that were used.

Alan “Al” Ritt grew up here in Michigan where his passion for fishing was born. In the early 80’s while living in Northern California, just after he started tying flies, he started fly fishing. In 1989 he moved to Northern Front Range of Colorado (Longmont) where he and his wife Diana reside. He is currently on the Pro-staff of Whiting Farms, PEAK Fishing, Flymen Fishing Company, Performance Flies, Clear Goo Glue, Fishing for a Cause, Performance Flies, Pro Sportfisher, Diiachi Hooks, and a fly designer for Montana Fly Company. Al is on the board of IFFF Fly Tying Governors and is also a guide on Colorado and Sylvan Dale Ranch just outside of Loveland. Besides with everything above, along with his articles in various magazines, he also published a book, “25 Best Most Versatile Flies”. Alan’s web site is: www.alrittflies.com


Paul Beel is owner/writer and fly tyer of the website and fly tying business Frankenfly (www.frankenfly.com). His passion of fishing was from watching his grandfather create homemade lures as a kid. He felt he could continue in his grandfather’s footsteps as a fly tyer. Paul’s tying specializes in Modern Streamers and Classic Michigan Dry Flies. And he enjoys fishing for Bass and Trout. He is a Commercial Fly Tyer for Gates Au Sable Lodge and Fly Shop; he is on the Regal Vise Pro Staff, Partridge of Redditch Pro Team, Engrico Puglisi Pro Staff, and Deer Creek Pro Staff. And his Patterns have been picked up by Orvis to be sold nationwide. You can contact Paul at www. frankenfly.com

Dennis Potter started tying over 30 years ago before fishing on the Ausable River in Northern Michigan. He has spent 4 seasons at the Gates Ausable Lodge as a Fly Fishing Instructor and he still enjoys teaching fly tying instruction. His fly designs are fished extensively and with great success throughout the U.S. Dennis does have various Fly Tying Videos on the market and he is the owner of Riverhouse Fly Company. You will be able to find him tying at the show, with his well known high resolution video tying Demo show. Dennis’s web site is: www.riverhouseflyco.com .

Mike Schmidt is owner & Fly Tyer for Angler’s Choice Flies, based out of New Smyrna Beach, Florida; which started out from encouragement and influence from his dad. His fly tying consists of Winged Wet, Warmwater, Coldwater, and Saltwater patterns. Some of the accomplishment’s of Mike, would consist of Orvis Fly Designer, Contract and Fly Tying Instructor for Mad River Outfitters, Signature Tyer for JagFly Company/Steelhead Alley, and has articles published in Hatches on line magazine. Mike’s web site is: www.anglerschoiceflies.com .


Eli Berant grew up and lives in Michigan, so he has been surrounded by big water all his life. After getting his first fly tying kit at the age of 15,  fly fishing and fly tying has been a passion of his ever since. Even though he really likes the “traditional” fly fishing experience; he has taken the concepts of the huge saltwater flies and began to apply them to his exploits here back in the big waters in Michigan. If you are interested in “Big Flies” for Lake Trout, Musky, Bass, or whatever will consume them, you can order these flies at Great Lakes Fly (www.greatlakesfly.com).


Todd A. Schotts is a production fly tier through Grizzly Flies by Schottsie, and creator of Michigan Bobbin Slingers (fly tyers) on Facebook. He is a very active member of the Michigan Fly Fishing Club, where he writes the “Fly of the Month” featured column and contributes other articles to the clubs newsletter, chairs and helps out with various outings, schools, and events. He has had 2 of his flies appear in Eastern Fly Fishing Magazine in 2 different featured articles back in 2015.His passion is being a Bass Bum, (chasing Smallmouth and Largemouth Bass in his Kayak); but also enjoys chasing Trout, or whatever will take a fly. Some of his patterns can be seen in Painted Trout located in Dexter, MI and coming soon Red Fox Outfitters in Fenton, MI. You can contact him at GrizzlyFlies@yahoo.com

Comments Off on 2017 Midwest Fly Fishing Expo – Featured Guest Tyers

Filed under Fly fishing show

Comments are closed.