I’ve never used them, but the guys at the Oak Orchard Fly Shop in Williamsville have an excellent reputation and they should be close to you. They specialize in steelheading on Western NY streams, but are pretty wired in to all the fly fishing opportunities in the area, including smallmouth and trout etc. They offer guided trips, but also have beginner –on the water instruction that might be a great investment to put it all together for you (100 bucks for a ½ day. 200 for a full day). Having someone actually spend some time pointing out where fish hold, how to mend line, how to rig up etc, would be a great way to get started.
The Oak Orchard Fly Shop provides the finest products for fly fishing. - Oak Orchard Fly Shop
Another way to jump start your FF is to join a Trout Unlimited chapter of Federation of Fly Fishers affiliated club. These groups can offer a lot to someone just starting out- casting clinics, advice on gear, techniques and where to go, and group trips to local waters. Here’s some searches to find
one near you for TU:
Council/Chapter Search | Trout Unlimited - Conserving coldwater fisheries
and for FFF:
Locate a Club
As far as where to fish, the NY Dept of Environmental Conservation should be a very good resource for you. This page has a bunch of links:
Fishing - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation
On the above page of the DEC site there are links to:
“where to fish” clicking on this link will take you to a bunch of links to different parts of the state. The “Western NY “ link will take you to more links on wild trout streams, ponds and lakes, steelhead streams, a list of warm water streams (for bass and panfish), and a list of stocking waters. For many streams it will also include public access sites, (and all streams with public access have maps available in pdf format).
“fish stocking” showing what waters are due to be stocked in Spring 2009 and what waters have received stocking in the past.
A good way to start is to find a pond and go after some bluegills. They usually aren’t too picky, and it’s a good way to get some action- you may also pick up some bass too.