Coastal Conservation Association Washington creates Pierce County chapter

Legendary fishing rod maker Gary Loomis will be the featured speaker at Thursday’s inaugural meeting of the Pierce County Chapter of Coastal Conservation Association Washington.

The Pierce County chapter joins 15 other chapters in the state, including ones in Olympia-Lacey, Kitsap Peninsula, Lewis County and the SeaTac area.

The association was created to advise and educate the public on conservation of marine resources. The group’s objective, according to its website, “is to conserve, promote and enhance the present and future availability of these coastal resources for the benefit and enjoyment of the general public.”

The Washington association formed in 2007, hoping to mobilize conservation-minded anglers to advocate for sound, science-based fisheries management, said Pete Delyanis, treasurer of the Pierce County chapter.

Among its accomplishments, the Washington association worked with the Oregon association to halt the use of gill nets in the main stem of the Columbia River and make recreational fishing the priority. It also worked with other fishing conservation groups to establish a recreational priority for Puget Sound shrimp fishing allocations.

Loomis grew to fame as founder of G.Loomis fishing rods. He will talk about his years of experience in the fishing industry with G.Loomis and now Edge Rods. He also will talk about the importance of conservation groups such as CCAW to the future of fisheries.

“Gary is very passionate about the need for harvest reform in our salmon fisheries, and he is also a strong supporter of our hatchery programs here in the Pacific Northwest,” Delyanis said.

Also on hand will be Wayne and Dianna Anderson of Chehalis-based North Fork Custom Rods.

For the group’s first meeting, they will have a cash bar and raffle prizes.

The meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. at the Tacoma Sportsman Club, 16409 Canyon Road E., Puyallup.

The chapter’s next meeting is March 19 and will feature a program from Jared Cady of Get’m Dry Fishing Co. A native of Graham, Cady is a fishing guide and commercial fly tyer.