The Dutch Fly Fair is back
by Bas de Bruin
On Saturday the 24 th and Sunday the 25 th a new Fly Fair was held at a very special location: Fort Altena at Werkendam. This old fortress dates back to 1840-1850 and was part of the Dutch ´waterlinie´ that was created to defend the heart of Holland. The fortress and the walls that belong to it have been rebuild recently. In the days up to the fair a lot of work and money was put into creating a Fly Fair atmosphere on the fortress. On the Friday we saw a handful of EFFA instructors (Bas, Sepp, Cees and Richard, with the help of well known fly tier Piet Weeda) busy with putting up the casting pool and the demonstration pontoon. Because there would be a full program on the Saturday, it was decided to start early (9.00 hours) with the EFFA exam. Four candidates had put their names down for this, including two from Russia . Jupp Verstraten , Bas de Bruin and Sepp Fuchs were in charge of this exam and they were helped by Richard Verbeek. The casting pool was set up in an east to west direction. The increasing wind from the east, up to a wind force 5, followed these directions but made things far from easy. After some test casting and the arrival of the translator for the Russian participants, it was possible to start at 9.00 h with the exam. For most participants the wind turned out to be a major opponent, this was clear to see in the back casts whereby the line did not stretch out all the way to the back.
By the end of the morning it became clear that Waldo Kranenburg had learned a lot from the few mistakes he had made at the earlier exam in Schimmert. Unfortunately the other candidates failed on more than one cast. I am glad to say they will not surrender and will try again next year. Alexandr, Mihail and Folkert were of course saddened by the fact that they failed this test, but I am sure we will welcome them as EFFA instructors in the future. After a short break, we went to the theoretical and teaching part of the exam. Waldo past these parts successfully too and we could congratulate him with the result and welcome him as a new certified EFFA instructor. By the end of the day the certificate and badge were handed over to him officially on the platform in front of the main building of the fortress. Hereby we congratulate Waldo again with the excellent result of his exam.
The Dutch EFFA instructors have played a major part in putting EFFA more clearly on the map during this Fly Fair. During both days demonstrations as well as workshops were held. For this fair a special flyer was put together, Cees van Noord had a major part in this, and this flyer was well received by the public. A special feature was the demonstration on the Sunday by two soon to be instructors (Youri Arens, 9 years, and Bas ter Laak, 15 years). Under the guidance of Bas de Bruin they showed what it takes to receive the casting certificate of the VNV (Dutch Association of Fly Fishers)