Photo by Bill Antonides – Autumn Antics

2021 AGLOW Annual Conference to Be Held in Gaylord, Michigan

The 2021 AGLOW Annual Conference will be held at Tree Tops Resort in Gaylord, Michigan September 12-16, 2021.

Download a Printable Conference Schedule

AGLOW Conference Schedule - Sunday, September 12

Morning/Afternoon Activities Afield

Presidents Reception

AGLOW Conference Schedule - Monday, September 13

Morning Activities Afield

National Wildlife Federation Welcome Lunch (Oak Room North & South)

We are once again proud to have Drew YoungeDyke and the crew from the National Wildlife Federation kick off the annual conference by welcoming everyone at this luncheon. The National Wildlife Federation is the nations largest conservation organization boasting 52 independent state and territorial affiliates and over 6 million members. Invasive Asian carp continue to be a threat to our Great Lakes ecosystem and Drew will bring us up to date on efforts to stop the spread in to the Great Lakes Region.

New Member Orientation (Birch Room South)
If you are a new member or this is you first conference, join AGLOW Executive Director Mark Smith for some helpful tips and information about how to get the most out of attending this event.

Spouse Reception (Birch Room North)
Spouses that plan on attending any of the spouse activities in and around Gaylord this week should attend this meeting to learn about those excursions.

Past Presidents Meeting (Signature Board Room)

Tourism Workshop (Oak Room North)
(Tourism Members Only)
1:30pm – 2:15pm
Our tourism members will want to join AGLOW Past President Jim Zaleski to discuss how to get the most from their AGLOW membership

Learn-It Seminars (Oak Room North & South)

Seminar 1: 2:30-3:30pm-Mark Martin-Michigan Walleye Fishing Legend
The finer points and details of fishing that help you be a more successful angler every time out.

Seminar 2: 3:45-4:45pm-Dena Vick-Monetizing your creativity; keywords, hashtags and other useful codes.

Gaylord Welcome Reception (Halfway Café)
6:00pm – 7:00pm

Gaylord Welcome Dinner (Halfway Café)
7:00pm – 9:00pm
Join our hosts Paul Beachnau and Christy Walcott from the Gaylord CVB as they welcome the 2021 AGLOW Annual Conference to Gaylord, Michigan. Their special guest, and our keynote speaker for the evening, will be David Lorenz, Vice President of Travel Michigan.

Lake of the Woods, Minnesota Hospitality Room (Room 1031 Main Lodge)
9:00pm – Midnight
Lake of the Woods Tourism Executive Director, and all around nice guy, Joe Henry will be vying to win the bid for the 2023 annual conference. Stop in and see Joe tonight for a night-cap.

AGLOW Conference Schedule - Tuesday, September 14

Delta Defense Breakfast (Birch Room North & South)
Delta Defense and USCCA have been long-time supporters of AGLOW. Join Kevin Michalowski, Ed Combs and the gang from Delta Defense for breakfast and find out what is new at Delta Defense/USCCA.

Board of Directors Meeting (Signature Board Room)
8:00am – 11:00am

Keynote Speaker Becky Humphries (Oak Room North & South)
11am – 12noon
Becky Humphries is the CEO of the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF), a nonprofit conservation organization dedicated to Save the Habitat. Save the Hunt. Prior to becoming the Chief Conservation Officer and now the CEO position of the NWTF, she worked for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources for 32 years. Join Becky for an informative update on the conservation challenges that the NWTF is currently focused on.

FX Airguns Lunch (Birch Room North & South)
12:15am – 1:15pm
FX Airguns is a relative new-comer to AGLOW, but Brad Bonar has been associated with AGLOW for years. Join Brad and Jonathan Elvegaard-Tueller and get educated on the accuracy and power of the modern airgun. Be sure to look them up out at the shooting range after lunch and experience first-hand why these airguns are so awesome.

Afternoon at the Range

Northland Sportsmen’s Club
1592 Old Alba Rd., Gaylord, Michigan

Come on out at the Northland Sportsmen’s Club and enjoy the afternoon at the range with our shooting sports industry partners.

Spypoint AIC Awards Cocktail Reception (Oak Room North & South)
6:00pm – 6:30pm
Trent Marsh from Spypoint Trail Cameras will be your host for a cocktail before dinner.

Toyota Scholarship & AIC Awards Dinner (Oak Room North & South) 6:30pm – 9:00pm
Plan on attending this action packed evening. Curt McAllister will kick things off by introducing the 2021 Toyota Scholarship recipients. Then Chris Sebastian will dive right in to this year’s Awards in Craft winners, sponsored by Ducks Unlimited and Crosman.

Kentucky Lake Hospitality Room (Room 1031 Main Lodge)
9:00pm – Midnight
Elena Blevins will be serving up some Kentucky Lake hospitality tonight and she will be happy to tell you why she wants to host the 2023 conference.

AGLOW Conference Schedule - Wednesday, September 15

Yamaha Breakfast (Birch Room North & South)
7:00am – 8:00am
Yamaha Marine will once again have three of the industry’s top specialists on hand to discuss new products and other issues in the marine world. Join Ry Landry – Product Education Manager, Phillip Speligene – Product Planning Manager, and John O’Keefe – Government Relations Specialist for breakfast and find out what’s new.

General Membership Meeting (Oak Room North & South)

Learn It Seminars (Oak Room North & South)
9:15am – 11:45am

Session#1 9:15am – 10:30am – Maximizing ROI on Hosted Trips
Panel discussion featuring Shelley Crant, Joe Henry, Paul Beachnau, & Ken Perrotte
FAM trips, media camps, cast and blasts, whatever form they take all are meant to provide a return on investment for every party involved. The hope is that the host cvb, product sponsors and media member all come away with a positive and profitable outcome. Come in and join the discussion regarding expectations and how to avoid pit-falls to help guarantee great results every time.

Session#2 10:45am – 11:45am – Denny Geurink-Adventures in Russia
After nearly 3 decades of hunting and outfitting in the “Land Of The Bear” Denny has a lot of stories to tell. Everything from “Hanging Out With The KGB” to bear encounters, bear attacks and bear hunting.

NSSF Luncheon (Birch Room North & South)
12:00pm – 1:00pm
Mark Oliva is the Director for Public Affairs at the National Shooting Sports Foundation, Inc. (NSSF), the firearm industry’s trade association. He is responsible for NSSF’s communications on policy, government relations and legislative issues and he will be at the podium during lunch today to bring us up to date on issues facing the industry today.

Learn It Seminars (Oak Room North & South)
1:15pm – 5:00pm

Session#1 1:15pm – 2:00pm Carol Rose Michigan Natural Resources Commission Chair (Oak Room North)
Learn about the genesis, history and evolution of Michigan’s Natural Resources Commission, celebrating its 100th anniversary with Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources and about some of the more compelling resource management issues coming up for the Michigan Natural Resources Commission.

Session#1 1:15pm – 2:00pm Brandon Butler Roeslein Alternative Energy (Oak Room South)
Everyone involved in the outdoors that has an interest in fish, wildlife and their habitat should be focused on the good things that Roeslein Alternative Energy is doing to help restore 30-million acres of native plants to the agricultural landscape, thus directly benefiting wildlife populations.

Session#2 2:15pm – 3:00pm Tick Terminator Brian Anderson (Oak Room North)
The CDC estimates that there are over 300,000 people diagnosed each year with Lyme Disease in the USA. Next to the mosquito ticks are the second leading parasite to spread illnesses. Learn where are ticks found, how long do ticks live, how ticks get lyme, what is the best prevention, and what do you do if you get bit.

Session#2 2:15pm – 3:00pm The Cellular Advantage (Oak Room South)
Trent Marsh from Spypoint will show you how cellular trail cameras save you time, money, and make you more prepared for hunting season.

Since their inception, trail cameras have helped hunters feel more connected to what’s happening in the woods. Cellular trail cameras take that to the next level, while saving time and money, not to mention keeping you out of the woods when you don’t want to be spooking game. Cell cameras are changing the way we hunt for the better.

Session#3 3:15pm – 4:00pm Amy Trotter, Executive Director Michigan United Conservation Clubs (Oak Room North)
Since 1937, Michigan United Conservation Clubs has been the largest statewide conservation organization in the nation, serving more than 40,000 members throughout Michigan’s two peninsulas. Grassroots advocacy is at the core of who they are and is one of four foundational pillars of the organization — the other three include communications, education and habitat.

Session#4 4:15pm – 5:00pm Brian Mastenbrook-Michigan DNR (Oak Room North)
DNR Wildlife Field Operations Manager and Wildlife Biologist, Brian Mastenbrook will give us valuable insight into the health and size of the elk herd living in Michigan. He may even give some pointers on where to go near Gaylord to see one in the wild.

Roeslein Alternative Energy Golden Glow Reception (Convention Center Michigan Room) 6:30pm – 7:00pm
Be sure to track down Brandon Butler and thank him for once again sponsoring the Golden Glow Cocktail hour!

Branson Golden Glow Banquet (Convention Center Michigan Room)
7:00pm – 8:45pm
The Branson Lakes Area CVB has sponsored the Golden Glow Banquet this year and will be the host for our 2022 Annual Conference. Larry Whiteley will be on hand representing Branson. The Golden Glow Awards are the highest honor bestowed by our Council of Past Presidents. This year we will see Michigan United Conservation Clubs, Jay’s Sporting Goods, Denny Geurink and Douglas Stang inducted as the latest recipients of a Golden Glow.

Bemidji, Minnesota Hospitality Room (Room 1031 Main Lodge)
9:00pm – Midnight
After the Golden Glows, Brady Louden from Bemidji will be your host, serve some drinks, and tell you all about his part of Minnesota and why it would be a great spot for us in 2023.

AGLOW Conference Schedule - Thursday, September 16

Nissan Breakfast (Birch Room North & South)
7:00am – 8:30am

Wendy Payne the Manager of Midwest Region Communications at Nissan North America will be on hand this morning to bring us up to date on what is new at Nissan, including introducing the new Frontier!

Learn It Seminars (Oak Room North & South)
8:45am – 11:30am

Session#1 8:45am – 10:30am Cashing in on Social Media Presence Panel featuring Dena Vick, Lee Rose Koza & Cynthya Porter
Everyone has at least one social media platform that they regularly post information to, but the question for many of us is “How do I make this pay?” Join in on this panel discussion and get some helpful tips on how to get the most out of your social media postings.

Session#2 10:45am – 11:30am Strategies for Outdoor Recreation-based Community and Economic Development with Brad Garmon Michigan Outdoor Recreation Industry Office Director

The Michigan Outdoor Recreation Industry Office has been working with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation under a novel memorandum of understanding, to assist Michigan communities in inventorying and understanding their outdoor recreation assets and their potential economic benefits. This approach can help state agencies, regional leaders, and local communities better leverage their outdoor recreation resources as part of a more robust economic development diversification strategy and invest for the best economic, social, and environmental return based on their strategic recreational assets.

Real Avid Lunch (Convention Center Michigan Room)
Speaker Dustin Sanchez 12:00-1:00pm
Dustin Sanchez, Marketing Manager at Real Avid is going to bring us up to date on the many new products available at Real Avid, and some great old ones too!

Super Break-Out and Destination Outdoors Tourism Break-Out (Convention Center Huron & Superior Rooms) 1:00pm – 4:00pm
Make your way on up to the convention center to check out all that Break-Out Day has to offer. New products, product samples and information from our Corporate Members, destination information and FAM trip opportunities from our Tourism Members, and organization and press release information from our Conservation Members will all be available during Break-Out. There will even be the chance to take a demo ride with the Yamaha Marine Pro-Staff, check out the new Nissan Frontier and the Toyota 4Runner Venture Edition.

Angler Qwest/Polar Kraft Super Break Out Open Bar
(Convention Center Huron & Superior Rooms) 1:00pm – 4:00pm
Checking out all of the Break-Out day booths can be thirsty business, Kristen Monroe, Lance Valentine and Dean Cushman will be on hand to buy you a drink while you cruise the convention room floor. Look them up and say thanks!

River Bend’s Resort Auction and Pizza (Convention Center Michigan Room) 7:00pm – 10:00pm
Have a drink on Paul & Brandi Johnson and Brian Smith from River Bend’s Resort at Lake of the Woods, Minnesota and enjoy the auction.

Fishing, Hunting & Other Excursions Afield

The following are the Fishing, Hunting and other excursions afield during the 2021 Annual Conference in Gaylord. Please look over the offering carefully before clicking on the sign-up form.

If you plan on participating in any of the excursions, pre, post or during the conference, you must fill out this form.


Afield Activities - Sunday, September 12

Pigeon River Country State Forest, Discovery Center & Lunch
11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

We will leave Treetops at 11 a.m. and arrive at Pigeon River Discovery Center at 11:30 for lunch and a tour of the Discovery Center. We will then visit three important landmarks in the forest – the Witness Tree, Inspiration Point and one of the sinkhole lakes. We will arrive back at the Discovery Center at 3:30 for departure back to Treetops. The visit to Inspiration point will include a short walk about the equivalent of a city block.

The Pigeon River Country State Forest is an integral part of our outdoor culture here in Northern Michigan. It spans over 110,000 acres of state forest land which is managed as a “Wild Area,” and contains one of the largest free ranging elk herds east of the Mississippi. The forest offers hunting, fishing, numerous rustic campgrounds, hiking, berry picking, morel mushroom foraging and sink hole lakes. It is also intersected by one of the most beautiful rivers in Michigan, the Pigeon River. This forest tour will be a fun, inspirational and informative afternoon.

Guided Raft Tour with Sturgeon River Paddlesports
12:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. (12 Slots Available)

This guided rafting trip will take you along the scenic Sturgeon River. While it may be the fastest flowing river in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula, this is not a wet wild ride and other than a few minor splashes, you will not get wet. The current is swift, but the trip is leisurely with an experienced and knowledgeable guide giving direction. **Spouses may sign up if space permits but AGLOW Media Members will be given spots first.

Fishing for Pan fish, smallmouth & walleyes on Otsego Lake with Polar Kraft Pro Staff – Dean Cushman
8am – 3pm (2 Slots Available)

Dean will meet you in the Treetops parking area and leave from there.

Fishing for Lake Trout & Salmon on Lake Huron – Thunder Bay – Out of Alpena, Michigan
All Day (3 Slots Available)

Kevin Drummond will meet the group at Treetops and take them to Alpena. All Equipment Provided

Fly Fishing for Brook Trout on the Black River
2pm-Dusk (2 Slots Available)

  • The Black River is one of best brook trout fishing Rivers in the Midwest.
  • Equipment provided – Except Waders – You may also bring your own equipment.
  • If you need waders, guide will secure from outfitter for a small cost.
  • Fishing Guide – Alex Cerveniak, President of local Trout Unlimited

Kayak Fishing for Blue Gill\Crappie – Reedsburg Dam\Houghton Lake
3pm – Dusk (4 Slots Available)

All equipment provided. You will meet at Lyman’s on the Lake Bait Shop – 6560 Houghton Lake, Michigan

Fishing for Blue Gill\Crappie and Walleye on Pontoon – Houghton Lake
3pm-Dusk (8 Slots Available)

2 boats of 4 available – 8 total slots . All equipment provided. You will meet at Lyman’s on the Lake Bait Shop – 6560 Houghton Lake, Michigan.

Afield Activities - Monday, September 13

Elk Park Tour
8:45 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Get an up-close look at the elk in Gaylord’s City Elk Park. Small groups will be taken into the enclosure by City staff for a tour of the grounds and to get a better view of the elk (from within a vehicle). After groups get the chance to see the elk, everyone will meet back up for some Q n’ A with the staff that maintain and care for the herd.

Fishing on Higgins Lake for Lake Trout\Rainbow on Pontoon
6:30am – 11:00am (3 Slots Available)
All equipment provided. You will Meet Guide Fred Bradley at his home on the Lake – 1111 Castner Legion Dr., Roscommon 48653

Fishing for Brook and Brown Trout on a drift boat – Manistee River
7:00am – 11:00am (6 Slots Available)
All equipment provided. 6 slots available, 3 drift boats (2 per boat)

Fishing for Blue Gill \ Crappie \ Walleye on Houghton Lake
7:00 a.m. until 11 a.m. (8 Slots Available)
2 boats of 4 available – 8 total slots. You will meet at Lyman’s on the Lake Bait Shop -6560 Houghton Lake Dr.

Fly fishing for Brook Trout on the Black River
6:30am – 11:00am (2 Slots Available)
The Black River is one of the best brook trout fishing rivers in the Midwest.
Equipment provided – except waders – you may also bring your own equipment.
If you need waders, guide will secure from outfitter for a small cost.

Elk Viewing/Bugling – Brian Mastenbrook, Michigan DNR
6:30am – 10:30am
Brian will meet you at Treetops parking lot and head out in search of free ranging elk. Brian will attempt to get bull elk to bugle and hopefully see some wild elk in their natural Michigan habitat.

Fishing for pan fish, smallmouth and Walleye on Otsego Lake with Angler Qwest Pro Staff –Lance Valentine
7:00am – 11:00am (4 Slots Available)
Lance will meet you at the Treetops parking lot and leave from there.

Fishing for pan fish, smallmouth and walleye on Otsego Lake with Polar Kraft Pro Staff-Dean Cushman
7:00am – 11:00am (2 Slots Available)
Dean will meet you at the Treetops parking lot and leave from there.

Fishing with Mark Martin
7:00am – 11:00am (2 Slots Available)
Meet Mark Martin in the Treetops parking lot and head out to one of the areas hot spots with the “Original Walleye Champion”

Afield Activities - Wednesday, September 15

Grouse Hunting
(Limit 6 Hunters)
Hunters will meet at Treetops and head to the woods at 7:00am and will return to the conference in time for lunch.

Afield Activities - Thursday, September 16

Grouse Hunting
(Limit 6 Hunters)
Hunters will meet at Treetops and head to the woods at 7:00am and will return to the conference in time for lunch.

Demo Rides with Yamaha Marine Pro Staff
Demo rides will take place during the Super Break-Out on Thursday Afternoon. The lake is a short 5 minutes from Treetops.

Afield Activities - Friday, September 17

Fishing for Salmon and Lake Trout on Lake Michigan out of Charlevoix
Depart 7:00a.m. (6 Slots Available)
Fishing with Angler Qwest and Polar Kraft Prostaff-Lance Valentine and Dean Cushman.

Details to be announced.

Spouse Activities

Spouses wishing to participate in any or all of the following activities must use this link and sign up for each activity as space is limited on most of these tours. https://aglow.memberclicks.net/2021-spouse-trips

Download a Printable Spouse Activity Schedule

AGLOW Spouse Activities - Monday, September 13th

1:30 – 2:00 p.m. – Spouse Reception at Treetops

AGLOW Spouse Activities - Tuesday, September 14th

10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. – Downtown Gaylord Tour Transportation provided – return time is flexible if finished early


  • Wine tasting at Rusty Pelican
  • Stop at Elk Park
  • Historical Museum Tour
  • Call of the Wild wildlife museum
  • Shopping downtown
  • 1:00 p.m. lunch reservation at Alpine Tavern – spouses pay for themselves

AGLOW Spouse Activities - Wednesday, September 15th

9:30 – 11:30 a.m.
Coffee & donut paint & sip w/wooden signs at Treetops

1:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Rafting on Sturgeon River

LIMITED TO FIRST 12 Depart at 1:30 p.m. for 2:00 p.m. guided rafting trip. Lasts approximately 2 hours. Not white water, but a faster river. You will not get wet!

limited to 12 spouses (this activity is specifically for spouses and will open to AGLOW members if under 12 spouses sign up)

Spouses may need to carpool to Wolverine (25 minutes away) for this activity

AGLOW Spouse Activities - Thursday, September 16th

9:00 – 11:30 a.m. – Spudtastic hike at Treetops

  • Leisurely hike at Treetops Resort along the historical “potato railway.”
  • Food tasting and beverage stations along the way. Historical information on our area’s history and contributions to the potato industry.
  • Some hills but not an overly strenuous hike.

Independent Activities

Spouses can schedule the following independent activities at any time during their stay:

  • Treetops Spa Services – 10% discount off regular prices for AGLOW Conference; September special: $99 Express Massage & Tea Tree Scalp Massage Combo
  • Treetops is already booking spa appointments into September and does not recommend waiting until during the conference.
  • Kayak, paddleboard and bicycle rentals with Up North Paddlesports – 989-619-5976
  • Golf at Treetops Resort – call for tee times – 989-732-6711
  • Shopping downtown at your leisure

Room Reservations at Tree Tops Resort in Gaylord, Michigan

Room Reservations being made for the upcoming conference in Gaylord, Michigan should CALL IN only using this Group Toll Free Number: 855-261-8764 and ask for the AGLOW rate.

If you reserve online you will NOT receive the AGLOW rate.

Yamaha Marine is Offering Demo Rides with Their New HM EX Product

Helm Master EX, the next level of customizable, integrated boat control. Now available in single through quint outboard applications, Helm Master EX brings forward the benefits from the original Helm Master system, including joystick maneuverability, and improves upon them to create greater control and fishability for a wider range of boaters.

Yamaha Marine will have a Skeeter WX2200 with an F300 on hand for a 1.5 hour educational experience where you will learn all the benefits that HM EX brings to fishermen between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.

Sign up for a demo ride today
Please sign up today and contact Melissa Boudoux at 678-558-1827 with any additional questions after your demo ride.

We look forward to seeing you at AGLOW!