It is hard for me to explain how proud it makes me that Lillard Fly Fishing Expeditions has been honored as an Orvis Endorsed Kids Camp/Expedition, but here is my attempt.
My father took me to his gun club, Fin Fur Feather, to shoot skeet as soon as I could hold up a .410. I don’t remember how many I hit, but I will never forget “getting” to carry his Orvis shooting bag from station to station and I won’t forget the support and encouragement I got from all the members when it was finally my chance to shoot on station 7. I remember smelling burnt powder for the first time, warming up in the smokey log cabin, and laughing at jokes I didn’t understand. It was at that point that I fell in love with all things sporting. It was that love of the “sporting lifestyle” that created and continues to create my fondest memories with my father, and planted the seed for my passion for conservation. As I look back over the last twenty years of Winter saturdays spent shooting sporting clays, Summer fishing trips, or Autumn bird hunts, I am certain there were more than a handful of Orvis products with us at all times.
I always knew that Orvis had a lasting legacy of great products. Products that they stand behind with one of the best customer satisfaction policies in the business. However, it wasn’t until I worked for Orvis in their 5th Avenue store that I realized what really makes Orvis such a great company. It is not just that they make great rods and reels, it was their commitment to conservation and the growth of our sport.
Orvis understands that “if we are bennifiting from the use of our natural resources, we must be willing to act to preserve them.” By committing 5% of pre-tax profits to the protection of nature, the matching of customer grants, un-matched grants for conservation organizations, and community donations, Orvis is doing just that.
Orvis Fly Fishing 101 student learning to cast outside the NYC Public Library on 5th Avenue.
What really surprised me during my first year at Orvis was how much they do to help grow the sport of fly fishing. In my two years at Orvis NYC, our store alone helped teach hundreds of first time fly fishermen through the free Fly Fishing and Fly Tying 101, 201, and 301 classes. Multiply that by over 50 stores and the countless number of people who have taken advantage of Orvis’s online learning tools and you begin to realize just how strong a commitment Orvis has made to education.
Orvis has 150 years of fly fishing excellence, a passion for conservation, a commitment to education, and a lifetime of personal memories. With all of this in mind, you can begin to realize just how proud Lillard Fly Fishing Expeditions is to join the Orvis family as an Orvis Endorsed Kids Camp/Expedition.