FTTU Banquet Announced
Inside the Outdoors, January
28, 2011

I just received word that the 38th annual Forbes Trail Chapter of Trout Unlimited Banquet and Raffle will be held Saturday, March 5, at the American Legion, Latrobe. Always a popular event, this is the only fundraising activity, so it is important that those interested in attending get their tickets as soon as possible.

In the years past, I have looked forward to attending. In addition to supporting this Westmoreland County chapter, I have a chance to see many of the fellows I used to tie flies with, who were members of the AFLOAT organization. Also in attendance in the past were couples either attending as husband and wife or fathers and sons. I am looking forward to seeing them again this year.

According to Scott Minster, secretary, the organization already has a number of great prizes to be given away, including a steelhead rod, ones by Orvis and other big names. “This year, a replica custom made Leonard 38H 7 foot bamboo fly rod will also be one of the items that will be raffled off,” he said. There will also be a great selection of outdoor prints including one by renowned artist Ned Smith, a 2011 Pennsylvania Trout Stamp and signed and numbered print by George LaVanish and Susan Yoder’s award-winning Trout Stamp print, Defending the Redd.

There is always a grand prize for the lucky ticket holder. This year, the recipient will receive an Orvis Helios fly rod with a large arbor Battenkill reel, a $900 value.

And as always, there will be a great selection of many other fine prizes.

One has a choice of stuffed chicken breast or stuffed pork chop dinner.

Tickets are only $25. They may be obtained by visiting The Angler’s Room, Rout 217, one mile north of Kingston Dam, Latrobe (724-537-0683); Loyalhanna Fishing Post, Route 30 East, Ligonier (724-238-5551); and Ligonier Outfitters, 127 W. Main St., Ligonier (724-238-4900).

Hey parents! Take your kids and every youngster under the age of 16 will get 40 free general raffle tickets with the purchase of a banquet ticket, a $20 value. Boy, do I wish I was a kid again!

If you are one who loves the outdoors, but, maybe just moved to the area, or are reading this column and never heard of the organization, let me brief you about this Latrobe-based organization.

According to Monty Murty, current president, “FTTU was formed in 1973 to preserve, protect and restore Westmoreland County’s natural heritage of trout streams and trout fishing. By the 80’s we had achieved major progress restoring the Loyalhanna Creek as a trout fishery and creating a popular Catch and Release Delayed Harvest Area. Both have a direct impact on recreation and tourism, and therefore on our local economy. Forbes Trail Chapter received a prestigious Nation Trout Unlimited golden Trout award for that work.”

Continuing on, he said, “We are introducing the increasingly indoor, Internet generation of young people to trout fishing and coldwater conservation through both our Youth Group and our Trout in the Classroom project. In 2007, Forbes trail’s youth programs were named Pennsylvania’s Best in the State.”

As always, FTTU needs a little help from its friends – those living in the communities representing the county. If you have a business and would like to give a donation, FTTU welcomes prizes. If interested, contact Monty Murty at 724-238-7860. Monetary contributions are also welcome. Without necessary funding, it is hard to get much accomplished. Those wishing to contribute should make checks payable to: Forbes Trail
Trout Unlimited. The mailing address is: Forbes Trail Trout Unlimited – Attention Secretary, P.O. Box 370, Youngstown, PA 15696.

Keep in mind, all who contribute will be noted not only in the program the evening of the banquet, but also on the chapter’s website for the entire course of the year.

If you are interested in learning more about the chapter and its programs, visit the FTTU website at www.forbestrailtu.org.

- Paul J. Volkmann
You can contact me by email