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Greenville to celebrate annual Maine Forest Heritage Days this weekend

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GREENVILLE — The 26th annual Maine Forest Heritage Days is set to take place Aug. 10-13. The weekend includes a bus tour through Maine’s working forest, a craft fair, carriage rides, chainsaw carving, a “Roaring Twenties” cruise aboard the Katahdin, a woodsman demonstration featuring chopping and ax throwing, and the regional Game of Logging competition.

The Forest Heritage Days events start a day early this year on Thursday, Aug. 10. That evening at 6 p.m. at the Moosehead Marine Museum, on the Lily Bay Road, the museum’s own Rocky Rockwell will present “The Last Log Drive,” as he shares photos and memories of working aboard the Katahdin during the logging days.

On Friday, Aug. 11 at 8:30 a.m. a six-hour working forest bus tour departs from the Greenville Consolidated School on Pritham Avenue. The excursion will travel through the Maine woods with educational stops, demonstrations, and lunch. The bus tour will include a visit to Pleasant River Lumber in Dover-Foxcroft to view the mill operations. Tickets are required, with information available at www.forestheritagedays.org.

The Colby Woodsmen demonstration begins at 3 p.m. on the school campus, with old-time logging skills on display such as chopping and ax throwing.

On Friday evening the “Roaring Twenties Katahdin Cruise” will be hosted by the Center Theatre of Dover-Foxcroft on the Steamship Katahdin for a night of 1920s-themed partying and swing music around Moosehead Lake. Tickets and more information can be found at www.katahdincruises.com.

On Saturday, Aug. 12 a craft fair on the school grounds gets underway at 9 a.m. The fair includes area organization booths, with many featuring information on land use issues. The day will also feature forestry and recreation exhibits, a children’s area, and a visit from Smokey the Bear.

The annual Game of Logging competition gets underway at 10 a.m. as professional loggers from Maine and beyond compete to see who has the top skills for working in the woods.

During the day on Saturday those attending Forest Heritage Days can enjoy free horse and carriage rides. Mike Thurlow will showcase his artistic chainsaw carving skills at noon.

On Sunday, Aug. 13 a woodsman’s breakfast will be served with a menu fit for a lumberjack from 7-10 a.m. at the American Legion on Pritham Avenue.

Throughout the weekend “The Woodsmen, The Steamboats, The Farms” exhibit will be on display at the Center for Moosehead History on Lakeview Street.

The complete schedule as well as information about ticketed events can be found at www.forestheritagedays.org or the event Facebook page.

Forest Heritage Days is an annual community event that honors the state’s most historic industry. The forest products industry has been a staple in Maine for generations and provides an annual economic impact of $8 billion, employs one in 20 Mainers and contributes 28.9 percent of all state exports. Each year since 1991, families and community members gather to celebrate this vibrant industry with several days of forestry fun.

Observer file photo/Stuart Hedstrom
GENTLEMEN, START YOUR CHAINSAWS — Competition announcer Stuart Hall introduces the five entrants in the 2015 regional Game of Logging at the Greenville school grounds, held in conjunction with the annual Forest Heritage Days celebration. From left is Hall, Jeremy Grignon, Tom Fox — that year’s winner, John Grignon, Tyler McIntosh and Paul Cyr. The 2017 event will be at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 12 as part of Forest Heritage Days events running from Thursday evening through Sunday morning.

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