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  • Jennifer Donovan

Discover Downtown Gloversville

The Fly Shack Catches Customers from Around the World

April 1st started trout season for New York State, but for Downtown Gloversville’s The Fly Shack, helping customers with fishing equipment finds is a year-round season of love for the sport.


Recently, the crew at the local business located at 28 E. Fulton Street, was filling an order for a customer residing in Chile, a popular destination for brown trout fishing where the fish can grow up to 45 inches long.


The Fly Shack started nearly 20 years ago with Michael Bokan at the helm. What started as a business working out of a person's home office and on a kitchen table, it had grown to temporarily fill the building at 15 W. Fulton St. and continued its successful journey to the current space that houses the retail showroom in the front of the first floor dedicated to customers coming through the doors. The rest of the building houses offices and stockrooms for shipping orders and distribution. Ninety percent of the sales are online customers. The Art Deco-style building was once the Jewish Community Center and the outside still boasts that name above the door and “Lucius N. Littauer Building” on the façade. Pre-COVID pandemic, The Fly Shack did many trade shows exhibits and the retail racks are built on wheels so the display cases can still be rolled out for road shows in the future.

Flies for trout, salmon, bass and more are available at the facility and they are tailored to attract specific species. There are over 2,000 different kinds of flies available to purchase. Flies include dry flies (May Flies, Caddis Flies, Stoneflies, Midges, Crane Flies, Attractor Flies, Dragons and Damsels), Wet Flies (Traditional Wet Flies and Soft Hackles), and Saltwater Flies (Bonefish/Permit, Tarpon, Redfish/Snook/Sea Trout, Stripers/Blues/Bonito/Albie and Barracuda). The list continues and is outlined on the website

 In addition to flies, customers could buy a variety of fishing equipment and gear from rods, reels, nets, boots and clothes, vests, packs, bags and lanyards. There is also an extensive section for ice fishing equipment as The Fly Shack accommodates all fishing seasons.


Online reviews include this one from Pierce R.: “This is a great shop with awesome staff. I’m reminded of how small and passionate the fly fishing community is every time I walk through the door. Highly recommend it!” David M. wrote in his online review: “I just received my second order today and it was here in 4 days. My first batch of flies worked extremely well and held up extremely well. The Fly Shack fly goo works great also. I highly recommend this company and its products.” Local Guide Ryan S. wrote: “These guys are great! I ordered a rod case that was inadvertently out of stock. Instead of cancelling my order or putting me on a wait list, they called me to see if it was okay for them to dropship it from the manufacturer. I know this means they didn’t make much, if anything, on the sale. This is going above and beyond. I really appreciate their commitment to make things right. I’ll buy from these guys whenever possible and recommend you do too.”

Stop by during store hours and get to know The Fly Shack. The staff is very knowledgeable and can explain fishing basics to a novice and give great details to experts, including good local fishing spots, such as brown trout are great in the nearby West Canada Creek. Store hours are Thursdays and Fridays from noon to 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.


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