The Town of Hinesburg hosts a night of storytelling, discussion and education about the Hinesburg Town Forest, an 864-acre municipal forest owned by the town since the 1950s and now listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The event takes place Thursday, April 18, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., at the Hinesburg Town Hall, 10632 Route 116.
Originally comprised of abandoned hill-farms, the Hinesburg Town Forest is now a treasured municipal resource, managed for timber, recreation, wildlife, hunting, education and other uses. It has been the site of innovative forest management for decades, and hosts a trail network used by hikers, runners, wildlife watchers and mountain bikers from across the state and beyond.
The Hinesburg Town Forest History Night panelists will include Michael Snyder, commissioner of Vermont’s Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation and former Chittenden County Forester who planned and oversaw several timber harvests and road projects at the Hinesburg Town Forest; David Brynn, executive director of Vermont Family Forests, former Addison County Forester, and author of the Hinesburg Town Forest 1986 Forest Management Plan; Bill Torrey, renowned storyteller, author and logger who harvested timber on the Hinesburg Town Forest for decades; Chittenden County Forester Ethan Tapper, who currently helps manage the Hinesburg Town Forest; and Jean Miner of the Hinesburg Historical Society.
The innovative management of the Hinesburg Town Forest continues today. Currently, the forest is the site of active timber harvesting supervised by Tapper and harvested by Hinesburg logger Tim Brown in accordance with the property’s Forest Management Plan. The goals of the project, which will continue through winter 2019-20, are to improve forest health and wildlife habitat while demonstrating responsible, modern forest management and the production of local, renewable resources in an open, inclusive and transparent way. It is designed to give the public ample opportunities to engage with this important aspect of Vermont’s working landscape.
Organizers say the event promises to be enlightening, interesting and entertaining for anyone interested in history, the Hinesburg Town Forest or forest management.
To learn more about the management of the Hinesburg Town Forest, recent forest management plans, ecological inventories and more, visit the Hinesburg Town Forest Committee’s page of the town of Hinesburg’s website at www.hinesburg.org/townforestcomm.html.