The Jerry Bartlett Memorial Angling Collection of the Phoenicia Library is hosting its first of four Catskill Fishing Fever Forums to celebrate the life and times of Frank Mele: author, musician, flyfisher supreme, and noted conservationist, 12:30 p.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, March 19 at the Phoenicia Library, 48 Main Street. A panel consisting of Tony Bonavist, John Hoeko, Andy Mele (Frank’s son), and Roger Menard, will be moderated by local historian Bill Birns.
Frank Mele (1911-1996) was a Woodstock author and musician with a passion for dry fly fishing. In the 1970s Mele led Catskill Waters, a scrappy coalition of anglers and environmentalists, in an epic seven-year battle against New York City to guarantee adequate water releases below its reservoirs. Hear from a panel of Mele’s friends and family about their razor-edge legislative victory that preserved fish and fishing in the Delaware and Esopus.