Meadville Tribune

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May 4, 2014

Conference in Meadville to focus on forests

MEADVILLE — The third-annual Loving the Land Through Working Forests Conference is May 16 and 17 in Meadville.

This year’s event includes the annual Pennsylvania Tree Farm of the Year Tour as part of the day-long, in-the-field programming on May 17.

The popular Speakers’ Program on May 16 features Curt Meine, the biographer of Aldo Leopold, narrator of the Leopold documentary “Green Fire” and a noted conservationist in his own right. The 7 p.m. program is in the Vukovich Theatre at Allegheny and is free and open to the public.

Other presenters and panelists include Troy Firth, president of the Foundation for Sustainable Forests and 2013 PA Tree Farmer of the Year; Susan Stout, project leader of the U.S.F.S. Northern Forest Research Station; Mike DeBonis, executive director of The Forest Guild; Bob Perschel, executive director of the New England Forest Foundation; Eric Randall, Ph.D., forest ecologist and professor emeritus SUNY Buffalo; Jason Rutledge, executive director of the Healing Harvest Forest Foundation; Eric Burkhart, program director of plant sciences at Shavers Creek Environmental Center, PSU; Bob Long, supervisor of plant pathology at USFS Northern Forest Research Station; Carl Russell of Earth Wise Farm and Forestry, VT; Cecile Stelter, district forester for Pennsylvania Bureau of Forestry; and Sarah Sargent, Pennsylvania Audubon IBA coordinator.

New for 2014 is a May 16 in-the-field session developed by the Forest Guild and focused toward professional foresters, land managers and soon-to-be practitioners.

The May 17 in-the-field programming consists of four concurrent sessions led by nationally renowned experts. Each session is designed to foster group discussion and provide the best and latest information on forest management and related issues while appealing to a wide-range of interests and experience.

In-the-field programming is based at Wesley Woods’ Rustic Camp, 500 Eureka Road, Grand Valley, about 12 miles northeast of Titusville with the sessions taking place in a neighboring forest managed to Foundation standards and principles. Detailed directions will be sent to conference registrants.

 There is a $5 registration fee (waived for members of the Foundation for Sustainable Forests) and pre-registration is required to each day’s in-the-field sessions. A bag lunch is provided to participants in the May 16 program, and May 17 features a picnic lunch.

Programming for elementary school-age children is offered May 17 by I Am A Planet Kid. Registration is required for children.

Conference registration can be made at FoundationForSustainableForests.org.

-More information: Email Info@FoundationForSustainableForests.org.

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