2023 Texas Fly Fishing & Brew Festival

February 6, 2023 By: Johnny Sain

On February 25-26, 2023, the 6th Annual Texas Fly Fishing & Brew Festival will draw anglers from Texas and the Southwest, Colorado, Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, and Florida. Held at the Mesquite Convention Center on the outskirts of Dallas, the Texas Fly & Brew fuses fly fishing and microbrewery beer tasting. Fly fishing manufacturers, lodges, guides, artists, fly tyers, breweries, and specialty food vendors are among the more than 80 vendors who hail from all over the country. Festival sponsors include the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation, Alaska Trophy Adventures Lodge, Shenk Capital Management, and Trout Unlimited.  

The 2023 Texas Fly & Brew will host some of the industry’s most prominent anglers and authors. Noted speakers and fly tyers include: Tom Rosenbauer, Pat Dorsey, Kirk Deeter, Julie Matheson, Bill Gammel, Allen Rupp, Willard Franklin, Beau Beasley, Montana Fly Company signature tyer Phil Tereyla and Umpqua Royalty fly designer Steven Maldonado. Attendees will also enjoy hearing from popular regional guides, speakers, and fly tyers like Grahame Jones, Jerry Hamon, Rex Walker, Willard Franklin, Tim Urtiaga, Jon Easdon, Lee Blanton, Ahn Thai, Steven Palmer, Mitch Kempe, Greg Welader and others.

Festival attendees may also enter to win an angler’s bucket list Grand Prize: Six days of guided fishing (including accommodations) in Alaska, compliments of Alaska Trophy Adventures Lodge.

“We work hard to demystify fly fishing,” says festival director Beau Beasley. “Many are simply too intimidated by fly fishing and fly tying to even give them a try. We believe that the quiet sport is for everyone, so we find casting and tying experts who make it simple and fun.”

New in 2023 is the festival’s Beyond the Cast Women’s Fly Fishing Symposium. “After our 2022 Texas Fly & Brew, I was challenged to bring something unique, just for women fly anglers,” says Beasley. “I’m grateful to be able to partner with Take Me Fishing to bring this fly-fishing symposium for women that offers more intermediate and advanced classes. We need to see more women with fly rods in their hands.”

“We are thrilled to be the 2023 festival sponsor and to support this unique women’s initiative at both the Virginia Fly & Wine and the Texas Fly & Brew,” says Stephanie Vatalaro, Senior Vice President of Marketing & Communications for the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation. “RBFF’s Take Me Fishing brand has a focus on women with its national campaign Women Making Waves, supporting initiatives that make women and their entire family feel comfortable and confident in the sport.”

The symposium stretches over two days, covers numerous topics of interest to outdoor women, and is open to fly anglers of any skill level. “As far as I know,” Beasley continues, “nothing this specialized or large has ever been attempted at an event like ours. We are limiting the symposium to only 30 students on a first-come, first-served basis.” Symposium instructors and special guests include: Tina Murray; Texas Women Fly Fishers President Joan Swartz; guide and accomplished angler Julie Matheson; Kim Ranalla, founder of Miss Mayfly; Jeanine Blair founder of Fishanistas, Tom Rosenbauer; Jaz Robinson; Heather Geheke; Old Town Canoe pro-staffer Jerry Hamon; and Amy Milne, director of operations for Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing, among others.      

Tom Rosenbauer will offer a number of for-fee and free specialty classes at the 2023 Texas Fly & Brew. Returning this year is Pat Dorsey, who will teach a class on fishing tailwaters effectively. All paid specialty classes are first-come, first-served and are held indoors.            

Also new to the 2023 Texas Fly & Brew is a Festival After-Party sponsored by Shenk Capital Management. This limited ticketed event will occur Saturday evening in a nearby ballroom on the festival grounds. After-Party attendees will enjoy good food, music, and great conversation with Texas Fly & Brew staff and instructors. Tickets are $25 in advance (and $35 at the door, if available).     

The Festival will kick off with a VIP Welcome Reception (for vendors and instructors) hosted by the City of Mesquite at the Mesquite Visitors Center at Heritage Plaza, on Friday February 24, from 6-8 p.m.         

“The Texas Fly & Brew brings fly fishing to everyone,” says Beasley. “Commonsense fly-fishing and fly-tying instruction for the entire family. And the chance to taste great handcrafted brews to boot? Frankly, the festival’s a pretty easy sell.”

For more information and tickets go to www.txflyfishingfestival.org