Randolph Center — For Vermont’s town forests, 2015 is a landmark year, marking 100 years since state lawmakers passed a municipal forest law that allowed for the creation of these forests. To celebrate, a day-long event packed with speakers, workshops and networking opportunities is planned for Nov. 7 in Randolph Center.
The Community Conservation Summit: Celebrating 100 years of Vermont Town Forests will be held at Vermont Technical College in Judd Gymnasium from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. It is open to the public and designed to bring together conservation commissions, forest committees, municipal officials and community volunteers to share ideas and explore issues relating to town forests and other natural resources, including how to establish a new town forest or strengthen community involvement in existing properties
Pre-registration is required by Nov. 2. The cost is $15 per person or $12 for AVCC members and includes lunch.
To register, go to http://go.uvm.edu/100yearstownforests. To request a disability-related accommodation, contact Kate Forrer at (802) 476-2003 or (866) 860-1382 (toll-free in Vermont) by Oct. 23.
Peter Forbes, author, conservationist and co-founder of The Center for Whole Communities, has been invited to give the keynote address. Participants also will have a choice of workshops in three concurrent sessions. Topics include protecting community-owned land, managing multiple uses and expectations for town forests, incorporating management of community forests in town master plans, forest fragmentation, conflict resolution and the AVCC Story Library Project, among others.
The AVCC annual meeting also will take place during the event, which will culminate with an ice cream social and session to celebrate and recognize 100 years of town forests. As part of this celebration, messages submitted through the Town Forest Thank You Notes campaign will be shared.
The event is sponsored by the Association of Vermont Conservation Commissions and the Town Forest Centennial Committee. The latter was convened by the Vermont Urban and Community Forestry Program, a partnership between University of Vermont Extension and the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation.