In early 1983 a cadre of fly fishers in the Marquette area started meeting fairly regularly and eventually decided to become a local Chapter of Trout Unlimited. The original name was the Marquette Chapter of Trout Unlimited and chartered by the Trout Unlimited national organization in June 1985. The new charter comprised members primarily in the western Upper Peninsula.
The members voted to change the name officially to the Fred Waara Chapter under a new charter in June 1988. In 2009, the Iron River Chapter located in the western U.P. terminated its charter and the Fred Waara Chapter incorporated their area of operation. In 2021, the Two-Hearted Chapter in the Eastern U.P. terminated its charter, and the Fred Waara Chapter assumed their area. In the early years the Fred Waara Chapter serviced Marquette, Alger, Delta, Schoolcraft and parts of Dickinson County. Today, the Chapter includes Luce, Chippewa, Mackinac, Iron, Menominee counties and all of Dickinson making it the second largest TU chapter in terms of geography in the United States.
The Chapter regularly takes part in conservation projects to restore trout habitat in streams and rivers throughout U.P. watersheds. We are very proud of our youth education programs, which include our Kitzman-Waara Grant for coldwater fisheries research in the U.P., Salmon in the Classroom program for middle and high school students, and support of the Michigan Council of Trout Unlimited Youth Conservation and Fly Fishing Camp held annually at Higgins Lake in Roscommon Michigan.
Read more information about our chapter history here.