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NEK chapter of Trout Unlimited reborn in honor of David and Francis Smith

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NEWPORT — In a significant resurgence of local conservation efforts, the Northeast Kingdom Chapter of Trout Unlimited (TU) has been reestablished and renamed in honor of the late David Smith and his son Francis Smith. This revival aims to continue their legacy of preserving the area’s coldwater fisheries, a critical resource for the local ecosystem and the angling community.

Formerly recognized nationally for their successful environmental achievements, the Northeast Kingdom Chapter received accolades in 1996 for their role in removing dam #11 on the Clyde River. This milestone effort, led by David and Francis Smith along with other dedicated members, was pivotal in restoring vital spawning habitats for Landlocked Salmon and ensuring their passage from Lake Memphremagog.

The Smiths, known for their unwavering dedication to fisheries conservation, spent many years working on projects that have had a lasting positive impact on local streams and fisheries.

Following years of dormancy, a renewed group of volunteers from across the Northeast Kingdom has rallied to recharter the local chapter, now named the David & Francis Smith Northeast Kingdom Trout Unlimited.

This relaunch symbolizes a commitment to uphold the Smiths’ remarkable legacy in coldwater conservation. As spring unfolds, the reinvigorated chapter is actively engaging in projects that focus on the restoration and conservation of trout habitats across Caledonia, Orleans, and Essex counties.

These efforts encompass monitoring water quality, enhancing instream habitats, restoring riparian areas, and improving fish passageways, all directed towards fostering sustainable trout populations.

Anglers and conservation enthusiasts are encouraged to join or support the chapter’s mission. Information on membership and involvement is available at www.TU.org.

The chapter is also reaching out to the community through events, including an appearance at the Orleans Rod & Gun Club’s annual fisherman’s breakfast on Saturday, April 13, at 8:00 a.m. at the Orleans Municipal Building.

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