The Weeks Act, passed in 1911, is marking its 100th Anniversary. Mountain National Forest, along with several partner organizations, is hosting a family-friendly festival on July 29 at the base of the Mt. Washington Auto Road. This free, public event is part of a coordinated New Hampshire effort celebrating the Weeks Act Centennial.
The Weeks Act made the creation of the National Forests east of the Mississippi River possible. This landmark piece of conservation legislation helped to create 41 National Forests in the Eastern United States, including the White Mountain National Forest. These valuable forests now provide clean water, wildlife habitat, recreation opportunities, forest products, and so much more.
To commemorate this important anniversary, the Society for Protection of NH Forests, Appalachian Mountain Club, NH Department of Resources and Economic Development, Plymouth State University, Weeks State Park Association, Arts Alliance of Northern New Hampshire, the New Hampshire Timberland Owners Association, members of the Weeks family, and the White Mountain National Forest, have come together to celebrate the Weeks Act Centennial throughout the year.
The Main Pavilion of the festival will highlight these partnerships in conservation, recreation, and a White Mountain Marketplace that showcases area services, products, and attractions. The Main Pavilion will also host the stage where entertainment will be ongoing throughout the day.
Currently scheduled to perform: musician, Jeff Warner performing Lumber Camp Songs; amazingly talented fiddler, Patrick Ross; Marek Bennett and his band Big Paws; very popular storyteller and comedian Rebecca Rule; and historical interpreter Dick Fortin.
The Forest and Family Experience Pavilion will have many hands-on, family-friendly activities, including hikeSafe instruction, Junior Ranger activities, a Mt. Washington Weather observatory demonstration, a US Forest Service soil investigation pit, and water, pond and stream discovery.
The NH Division of Forests and Lands will have a wildfire truck display and there will be a wild-land fire obstacle course for children of all ages to enjoy.
There are also several walk thru educational trucks scheduled to be on display including the “Way of the Woods” a mobile forest heritage museum and “Watershed on Wheels” – a hands on interactive display.
You will find forestry demonstrations from past and present, watch craftsmen create their wares from wood, and learn about all that the forests have to offer at the Woodlands Pavilion. Some of the demonstrations scheduled include: Old Tools of the Trade; A Cross Cut Competition with the UNH Woodsmen; Trail Building and Maintenance; What is Intargia?; Wood and Art, The Art of Basket Making; a Wood Turner and Wood Carver/Doll Maker. You will also be able to learn how to build a bird house from expert woodworkers!
Food and refreshments will be available all day long under the Festival Food Pavilion.