At long last, Trout Unlimited (TU) will be hosting its annual Western Regional Rendezvous in Taos this year. The event was originally scheduled for the spring of 2020, during which we had hoped to feature much of our partnership with Questa and the lessons we had learned thanks to the village’s generosity. Querencia had just come out and we were excited to have a public screening of the film. It’s been the longest three years imaginable, and we’re glad they’re behind us.
To kickoff the 2023 event, which runs from Thursday, May 18, through Sunday, May 21, and includes work sessions and seminars, TU will be hosting “Western Waters Film Night” on Thursday evening at the Taos Center for the Arts. Free Trout Unlimited memberships will be offered at the door. The event is free for members and $10 for non-members.
The films will include highlights from New Mexico, featuring student films from New Mexico State University and local features like our own “Querencia: A Love of Place” about Questa’s perseverance through economic challenges. “Agua Es Vida”, another beautiful rendition of rural life in New Mexico, will also be shown. The films will cover a wide array of Western trout and water stories with everything from fire impact, to native trout restoration, to changing communities through conservation and inclusion.
A recent selection in the Fly Fishing Film Tour, Wading for Change features conservationist and angler Jr. Rodriguez who learned that to become “like the pictures he saw in magazines,” he had to leave behind what he loved the most. By juxtaposing Jr. ’s origins in Houston, Texas, and his current home in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, we share his journey of learning to love the outdoors and what it can be like to participate in outdoor sports in Western mountain towns as a person of color.
In “Tribal Waters”, a film by Patagonia, Darren Calhoun speaks to water issues on tribal land. The Shoshone people have lived on the eastern slope of Wyoming’s Wind River Range for more than 10,000 years. The Wind River, which flows through their homeland, has deep meaning for them and the Northern Arapaho, the tribe with whom they now share this land. The water is crucial to their way of life, history and customs. After hundreds of years of witnessing their waters, lands and culture come under constant attack, there is hope that an outdoor-based, sustainable recreational economy could flourish here.
We hope you will join us at Taos Center for the Arts on May 18 to enjoy these powerful films. Doors open at 6:30 pm, films begin at 7. Again, the tickets are $10 each.
In other news, it was great to see the Rio Grande Cutthroat stocking event come to fruition on a cold and windy April 14. At least 100 folks showed up to stock fingerlings in the gorge and at Eagle Rock Lake. All told, approximately 20,000 baby cutthroats were given a new home in their native northern New Mexico range.