National Forest Products Week/Month
Each October, the Union County OWIT chapter attempts to bend the ear of radio listeners around the northwest. The mission…to help people understand the positive economic and environmental impact a healthy, maintained forest can have on both our forests and the communities in which we live. The radio ads created by the group reflect on the perils of mismanaged forests. Acres damaged by wildfire versus acres harvested, lost jobs and overall environmental health are among the topics of the group’s public invitation to step up and join the fight to gain effective forest management practices. This year, Molly Bingaman, Kim Kotter, Sherree Alley, Tiffany Sherman and Caroline Ward did the honors, taking time out of their busy day to record the group’s messages at the local radio station.
Also in October the Union County Chapter reaches out to each 4th grade student in Union County. We provide them with a handout or something they can take home that reiterates that managed forests are forever forests! This year each classroom will receive the OFRI Carbon Cycle Poster and an instruction sheet for the teacher giving them several ideas for activities pertaining to carbon and its sequestration. Each student will receive a “Forest Essays” booklet prepared by OFRI as well. It is important for us to continue to try keeping factual, science based information in front of a group of students each year. We chose 4th graders because it is a fun age to engage with if we do get the opportunity to get to the classrooms and then we know at some point we are hitting each child during their school career.
Ag-Timber Parade May 19, 2017
This year’s Ag-Timber Parade was rain-free! For the first time in three yearswe had a nice evening with a beautiful sunset to create a great atmosphere for parade goers. Our grand marshal this year was Ralph Hart. He is a retired Union County Extension agent who has still remained very active in local 4-H and agricultural activities. He was also awarded the Distinguished Service to Union County Agriculture award this past spring. The parade continues to be a huge event for us and year after year it is very successful. Participants are calling us by late April to make sure we are still having it!
Here is a YouTube video of the Ag-Timber Parade:
Summer Ag Institute – July 20, 2017
George and Vanessa (one of our charter OWIT members) Hagedorn were gracious hosts to this year’s class for the Summer Ag Institute. They happened to be logging their property north of Elgin so they had the class join them there to demonstrate mechanical logging practices in Eastern Oregon. While the Summer Ag Institute was originally set up for teachers to experience agriculture first-hand with tours of processing plants, farms, nurseries and businesses, they have now on the East side incorporated a forestry day. It is a great way to get the teachers continuing education credits while being able to teach them a little bit about the operations of Ag and timber business. Many come away with a whole new insight and appreciation for both! It would be a good thing to encourage any teachers you know to participate in. They have on the West and the East side of the state each summer. For more information click here.