Mike Kalinowski drove four hours just to volunteer at the Virginia Fly Fishing Festival.
"It's wonderful. It's larger scale than what I had been led to believe," he said.
He came from Maryland. Some people are on their way from Australia.
"They're coming, and they're spending the night here," said festival co-chair Len Poulin. "They're spending the weekend here. So even our volunteers that are getting in free of charge, are spending time in the city, getting introduced to our local community, and staying in our hotels, eating in our restaurants."
Fourteen years ago, organizers realized the tourism potential the South River offered to fly fishers worldwide.
It's a natural trout fish hatchery and one of only two brook trout streams in the state.
They believe it's one of the only area's where the event is held right on the riverbank.
"It's a real jewel that people are getting exposed to. They're coming back, not just for the weekend but throughout the entire year," said Poulin.
The festival brings in thousands of dollars over the weekend; money that will be well spent.
"Ultimately, the monies will be rolling back into the community either by way of restoration projects or through increased promotion of the event, which is also promoting the area," said Poulin.
The festival continues through Sunday, April 22nd.
© Copyright 2013 WHSV / Gray Television Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved.