• 18 Nov 2010 /  Misc

    There was a time before I knew Tom but that is difficult to recall. It seems that I have always known Tom but logic says that I met him in 19982 when I walked into his fly fishing shop on Grand Avenue. Bright Waters was not your normal retail establishment nor was Tom your normal retailer. The store always seemed short on inventory with some part of it always needing to be merchandised. While Sam Walton had his sundown rule concerning work, which was to get everything done that day; Tom’s sundown rule was to leave no story untold until tomorrow. It must have been his newspaper background.

    Bright Waters was not in a prime location so his customers had to work to get there. Many of them decided that if they were going to make the hike they were going to stay around awhile. This turned the place from a store into a club house. Initiation into the club required a trip around the corner to a Vietnamese restaurant for an order of lemon grass. It also foreshadowed what I would find out was Tom’s second greatest passion after fly fishing, lunch.

    Tom once had an older customer in the shop who stated that he had a house on the Kinnickinnic River. Tom asked how he did fishing and the old man replied, “Well my freezer is full of trout.” Tom said that he would like to fish with the old man some time. The old man asked ‘why’? Tom dryly replied “So I can drown you.”

    In spite of the hurdles and the fact that Tom was more comfortable on the stream than behind the counter Bright Waters won a number of awards for sales growth from one of his suppliers. Bright Waters growth was so good that the supplier decided to open some stores of its own in the Twin Cities. That struggle eventually moved Tom to start Midwest Fly Fishing. His advocacy for the sport and the environment contained in his written body of work in Midwest Fly Fishing speak for itself. Tom was an eloquent writer who could capture a moment or an emotion.  On numerous occasions I suggested that he write a book because I thought that he had a story in him. He replied that it would be too hard.  I thought that he meant hard in the sense that it is sometimes difficult for a Scandinavian Lutheran to reveal himself and not hard in the writing.

    Tom spent over a year in the planning and designing the first Great Waters the fly fishing show. This is when Tom’s passion for lunch was confirmed.  Tom wanted the show to be a teaching moment. He communicated the desire to educate to all.  His desire to help Trout Unlimited and the support that he gave in the magazine and at the show were above and beyond the call of duty. That spirit turned Great Waters into a great event for learning the sport and protecting the resource where we participate.

    There is more that I could say in praise of Tom but I remember a comment he once made while we were fishing.  “Nice trailing loop!”  So I won’t let the line nor vocals get any more knotted tonight.

    A memorial service for Tom will be held on Saturday, November 20th, at 2 pm at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, 700 Snelling Ave, So, St. Paul MN.

  • 11 Sep 2010 /  Misc

    Why/How Habitat Projects are Undertaken by MNTU

    September 2010 Update on the Sucker River

  • 08 Mar 2010 /  Misc

    The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will hold six open houses in March and April to update the public on accomplishments and goals for management of trout streams in southeastern Minnesota.

    Fed by the cold water of natural springs, the valleys of southeastern Minnesota are an angler’s paradise, with more than 700 miles of trout streams. Ecologically sensitive, and popular with anglers from around the upper midwest, these streams require special attention to assure that they remain healthy and productive.

    The DNR in 2003 worked with anglers and other interests to develop a 12-year strategic plan and a 6-year management plan to maintain the recreational and biological values of these coldwater resources. Now, at the midpoint of that 12-year period, the DNR is reporting on its progress and fine-tuning plans for the next six years.

    The DNR’s 2004-2009 management plan for southeast trout streams included four major goals related to angling opportunities, habitat improvement, research and monitoring, and public information.

    Accomplishments for this period include:

    • Added 20.26 miles of angling easements on 20 streams.
    • Reintroduced native brook trout in 17 streams.
    • Implemented tiered trout fishing regulations to increase angling opportunities.
    • Assessed fish populations in 68 streams.
    • Published 68-page booklet highlighting angling opportunities.
    • Intensified long-term monitoring program to better evaluate factors influencing annual variability of trout populations.

    While retaining the four major goals of the earlier plan, DNR fisheries staff has identified a number of opportunities for further improvements in their management of southeast Minnesota’s unique coldwater resources for the next few years, including:

    • Increase angling opportunities.
    • Accelerate acquisition of angling easements.
    • Explore simplification of angling regulations.
    • Secure new funding for habitat improvement.
    • Enhance research and monitoring efforts.
    • Augment information on DNR Web site.

    Public information meetings on recent accomplishments and proposed plans will be held from 7 -9 p.m., with formal presentations at 7:45 p.m., on:

    • Tuesday, March 16, at the DNR Central Office cafeteria, 500 Lafayette Road, St. Paul
    • Tuesday, March 23, at the University Rochester/Heinz Center, 851 30th Ave SE, Room HA 102, Rochester
    • Thursday March 25, at the Eagle Bluff Environmental Learning Center, 28097 Goodview Drive, Lanesboro
    • Monday, March 29, at the Frontenac Sportsman’s Community Center, Co. Rd. 2 and Territorial Road, Frontenac
    • Monday, April 5, at Elks Lodge 327, 4540 Service Drive, Winona
    • Thursday, April 15, at the Four Seasons Community Center, 900 N. Kingston St., Caledonia.

    Copies of the draft management plan can be found on the DNR Web site.


  • 25 Aug 2009 /  Misc

    Listen to MN TU State Council President, John Lenczewski, on KFAN (6/18 Hour 1)

  • 24 Aug 2009 /  Misc

    Welcome to the new MNTU.ORG Website & Blog.  You’ll find updated news and information regarding events around the State or Minnesota.  If you have any questions or feedback please feel free to contact us.  

    Thank you,