The Bucksport Bay Area Chamber of Commerce, working in partnership with the Maine Forest Products Council (MFPC), will hold the first Bucksport Bay Festival of the Forest on July 25-26, focusing on Maine’s forest economy, including tree growth, management, products, equipment and the $8 billion economic impact on our state.
“We are very excited to be working with the Maine Forest Products Council and trust you are equally as excited!” said Leslie Wombacher, the Chamber’s executive director. “The Festival of the Forest was long overdue in a state that calls itself the Pine Tree State.”
MFPC members are invited to help spread the good news about Maine’s forest economy by becoming festival sponsors or vendors. We need to mobilize some of our member companies to staff educational booths. Our goal will be to get a sample of displays from our different membership sectors including:
- Forest Land Ownership and Forestry
- Logging and Timber Harvesting
- Pulp and Paper
- Sawmills and Lumber Production
- OSB Panels and Boards
- Biomass Energy
- Wood Pellets
In addition, we will network the opportunity with our affiliate organizations, but members should be encouraged to contact these organizations directly as well. Examples include, Small Woodlot Organization Association of Maine, Professional Logging Contractors of Maine, Maine Forest Service, University of Maine School of Forestry, and the Maine TREE Foundation. Please contact Sue McCarthy and let her know if you plan to participate and if you’re contacted an affiliate organization.
Some of the forest-related activities include paper airplane competitions, paper boat races and tours of Verso Paper. MFPC also will help with educational and promotional materials about the forest economy. In addition to the focus on the Maine’s forests and forest products, the festival will include all of fun events that have brought crowds to the festival over its 16-year history, including fireworks. Activities and vendors will stretch nearly a mile on the waterfront and up to Main Street. The parade route is from the Verso mill to the Verona Bridge on Main Street. The annual 5K Fun Run will be going “off-road” through the wooded Miles Lane trail system.
Other featured activities include a heavy equipment “petting area,” children’s craft and play zone, shopping for amazing arts and crafts, educational displays, fairy house building, and the opportunity to meet cast members from North Woods Law, Animal Planet’s Maine-based hit TV show. With the inclusion of wood-related themes and productions, the festival is expected to attract an even more diverse crowd.
“We expect the Festival of the Forest to be an excellent opportunity for retailers, service providers, artisans and crafters to promote their products relating to the forest,” Wombacher said. “We are not aware of another festival dedicated to the forest in Maine so this unique event will have a strong appeal to surrounding communities and beyond.”
The Chamber is happy to work with potential sponsors on their specific needs. For more information contact: Christopher Grindle, coordinator of the Bucksport Bay Festival, 207.469.6818 office or 207.991.7500 cell. You can also visit the Bucksport Bay Area Chamber of Commerce or www.facebook.com/BucksportBayFestival.