For the last four years, I've presented an ice fishing seminar series called the “Lure of Ice Fishing” where I discuss different aspects of the sport with attendees, from lake locations to lure selection to using both physical and digital resources, to help them find and catch more fish.
The seminar is always a highlight for me, because it allows me to meet and get to know many outdoorsmen and women in the community and talk ice fishing. Not only do I try to educate, but I also always learn something, because there's always someone in crowd who has knowledge that I do not possess and I'm eager to learn as much as anyone else.
Past attendance has always been very good, hitting 85 last year, but this year, I moved it to the Outdoor Campus West in Rapid City and thanks to social media help, great new prize donations from local retailers, guides, and plastics makers, and regular attendees of both my past seminars as well as the Campus's, attendance exploded to over 200 attendees last week!
It still shocks me to think about how many people came to hear my seminar. A truly humbling experience, but an awesome one at the same time. The room almost wasn't big enough. It'll be fun seeing if it can be topped next year.
Seminars are a way to share information and experiences with people to help them learn and experience more success themselves. I think, as passionate as we ice anglers can be, that we should take every opportunity to share that passion and look for ways to share it with others.
Local outdoor retail stores are always looking for people to help with demonstrations. Public libraries offer free rooms and community followings to help start a program. Outdoor organizations love to have people come in and discuss their passions.
There are so many opportunities out there to share the love of the ice. Now not everyone wants to speak to large groups and I myself still get a little nervous about public speaking even after 5 years of seminars. But once I get started, the information just flows.
So, if you have some fishing knowledge and a desire to see others succeed in fishing, think about opportunities and venues where it can share. It's a very gratifying experience and you'll meet some great people and make new friends.