Youíve gotten excellent advice. A local shop can set you up with flies and give you great advice on where to go, what to use and can help rig up fly line and backing on your reel. They might also be willing to take you out back and give you a few pointers on your casting.
By the sound of things, it looks like youíre in MN. If youíre close to the Rum you might consider these guys in Findley: The Fly Angler is a full-service fly shop, offering expert help on a wide variety of fly-fishing topics. We offer classes in fly-casting, fly tying, and rod building, as well as guided fishing and helping you arrange travel on hosted trips.
They offer casting classes for a modest cost (25 bucks) and can get you off to a great start.
Youíve got good recommendations for flies, the shop can help pick some out for you, but these are pretty standard for smallies:
Clousers chartreuse over white, brown over orange
Woolly Buggers- black and olive
Sculpin and/or crayfish patterns
Popper or gurgler for surface action
Small panfish poppers size 10 or 12
Any dry flies like Humpies ,Wulffs etc size 12 or 14
Foam ants/beetles or rubber legged spiders size 12
Bead head Nymphs- Gold Ribbed Hares Ear 14 and/or Pheasant Tail Nymph 16
Some of these flies, especially the ones for small mouth can be expensive to buy in shops. You may want to take up fly tying at some point, since most of these are easy to tie and use fairly inexpensive materials. (That said itís tough to actually save money fly tying, and few actually do, because the temptation is to buy tons of stuff and tie up all kinds of things.)
You might also want to check into some local fly fishing groups in your area. Itís a great way to get up to speed, and youíll meet some new fishing buddies. You can do searches here for local Trout Unlimited chapters or clubs near you affiliated with the Federation of Fly Fishers:
Council/Chapter Search | Trout Unlimited - Conserving coldwater fisheries
Locate a Club