From the topics of the seminars and workshops, to the 2020 keynote speaker, the 82nd Annual Oregon Logging Conference (OLC) will be highlighted by current issues of importance to the logging and related industries.
2020 OLC President Greg Stratton of Southern Oregon Timber Management, LLC said the theme this year “Working Forests: Carbon Keepers” was selected to highlight the role of the timber industry. “It was selected specifically to highlight that our industry, the products that we produce, and the forests that we manage are some of the best carbon keepers (sequesters) in the world,” Stratton said. “Working forests provide diverse habitat through our varied management practices and provide the raw materials to supply an industry that provides jobs for working families,” he added.
The 82nd Annual Oregon Logging Conference will take place February 19 – 22, 2020 at the Lane County Events Center and Fairgrounds in Eugene, OR. A complete schedule of events is available on the OLC website (www.oregonloggingconference.com).
The OLC gathering gets underway with a Meet and Greet (and registration) at the Graduate Hotel in Eugene on Wednesday, February 19th at 4 p.m., followed by the annual Oregon Women in Timber dinner and auction event at the same location.
This year’s keynote speaker is Dr. Patrick Moore, a founding member, former president, and international director for the environmental group Greenpeace. Dr. Moore will address the OLC on Thursday, February 20th at 9:30 a.m. His topic will be Fake Invisible Catastrophes and Threats of Doom. Dr. Moore’s speech will be based on an essay he wrote, mentioning 12 of what he calls fake, invisible catastrophes and threats of doom including climate change, the coral reefs, pesticide residues in food, GMOs, and farmed salmon.
The traditional equipment show will be full of the newest technology in logging, construction, trucking, heavy equipment, and biomass processing. More than 325 vendors will display the latest in equipment, parts, products, and services. Both outside and inside displays will cover the entire lay of the Events Center and Fairgrounds in Eugene.
Thursday and Friday start with traditional loggers’ breakfasts and Oregon Logging Conference Foundation auctions. Seminars, workshops, and hands-on presentations will take place both days.
Educational highlights include the 3rd Annual Future Forestry Workers Career Day, which will take place on Friday, February 21st in the Livestock Arena on the Lane County Fairgrounds. More than 1,000 high school students and educators are scheduled to take part in this natural resource career planning event, with the focus being attracting the next generation workforce. Hands-on exhibits will include forestry, reforestation, sawmills, diesel mechanics, welding, heavy equipment operations, and wildland fire fighting. Many companies will also have exhibits and information available for the students, as well as current employment opportunities in the industries.
Education is also the focus when 900 elementary school students are scheduled to visit the Oregon Logging Conference on Thursday, February 20th to get a first -and look at logging and other natural resource industries.
A few other fun activities are planned for the 82nd Annual OLC, including the delicious 17th Annual Desserts for Dreams ladies luncheon, which will take place Friday, February 21st at the Graduate Eugene. Proceeds from this charity event will benefit the non-profit In Our Backyard, an anti-human trafficking organization.
And don’t miss the 11th Annual Log Loader competition, taking place on Friday and Saturday, February 21st and 22nd. Log loader operators will compete for the title of best operator, by demonstrating their abilities of speed, skill, and efficiency in handling a hydraulic log loader. Watch as the operators stack, balance, and then unstack nine log pieces. Each stack must remain standing for five seconds or the competitor will be disqualified. There is no entry fee and participants are urged to sign up in advance.
The buffet dinner and cocktail party will be taking place on Friday evening, February 21st at the Graduate Eugene and will include an evening of food, drink, and dancing.
The final day of the OLC is dedicated to families and is open to the public. Family Day is Saturday February 22 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and includes paper making, bird house building, and other hands-on activities.
“The Oregon Logging Conference is packed with unique opportunities for forestry professionals to network and learn more about their trade,” said Rikki Wellman, Conference Manager of the Oregon Logging Conference. “The 2020 conference will certainly live up to its reputation as being the best logging, construction, trucking, and heavy equipment show west of the Mississippi,” she added.
The full schedule of events at the 82nd Annual Oregon Logging Conference is available online at www.oregonlogging.com/program.