Hocking College hosts a premiershowcase for lumberjack and logging skill competitions, timber industry exhibits and activities, and outdoor interests such as ATVs, fishing, hiking, cycling, and more.
Sometimes change is good! After more than three decades of hosting a forest industry trade show on the first full weekend of October, Hocking College is taking advantage of an opportunity to expand the fall event to include not only woodland activities but also more activities focusing on the outdoors. This new event is called the National Timber and Outdoor Show, and it will be held October 6â€“8, 2006. Visitors to Hocking Collegeâ€™s campus will find familiar sights such as lumberjacks, a lumberjack water show, logging equipment and chain-saw carving, but further exploration will uncover an array of new and varied activities for all to enjoy.
Hocking College President John Light sees the newly expanded show as an opportunity for growth. â€œWeâ€™ll bring back some of the things people expect to find because theyâ€™ve seen it here before, but weâ€™re adding new things that are more broadly focused on the outdoors â€” activities like hiking, biking, fishing, archery, and camping. Long-running events tend to get stale; weâ€™re injecting some new life to bring in a broader audience,â€ he says.
The following are some of the highlights of Hocking Collegeâ€™s National Timber and Outdoor Show.
Xtreme Ox Trax Challenge
The Xtreme Ox Trax Challenge is the first ATV event of its kind in the country and is making its debut at the National Timber and Outdoor Show. Conceptualized by Fast Traxx Promotions, the event is based on an enduro-course-style race that depicts all aspects of a ride through the forest â€” within the confines of a 150-foot-by-250-foot course.
â€œItâ€™s the size of the course that makes it different,â€ says Norm Bickley, Fast Traxx owner. â€œThis is a race through a confined space with obstacles such as log crossings, mud, sand and rocks. Itâ€™s on the ragged edge of excitement, a race riders will find challenging. The race promises to keep those watching on the edge of their seats.â€
Classes include youth, beginner, utility and professional. The event offers the largest pro-purse race in the area with $500 for utility and $1,000 for professionals.
Bickley says Stephanie Parton from nearby Malta, currently ranked second in the nation in the womenâ€™s class, may be competing. â€œBeing right here where so many of her followers could watch her race would be a real thrill,â€ Bickley said.
The ATV course will be open throughout the weekend for sponsor demos. Exhibitors will be set up in the adjacent area displaying ATV-related merchandise.
â€œThe important thing about the National Timber and Outdoor Show is that it is a live event and people will not only see a great race but have an opportunity to try out some of the equipment on hand,â€ Bickley points out.
Major sponsors for the Xtreme Ox Trax Challenge are Fast Traxx Promotions, Wayne National Forest, Rocky Out-door Gear Store, Hocking College and AllPower Equipment. AllPower donated a $4,400 Arctic Cat ATV that Rocky will give away during the National Timber and Outdoor Show.
Hocking College NASP Invitational
Teams and individuals representing schools in the Southeast Ohio Wildlife District will take part in the local competition that is part of the National Archery in Schools Program (NASP) on Sunday. Shooting a bow and arrow develops skills that can carry over into the classroom, according to Jim Marshall, District Manager with the Ohio Division of Wildlife.
â€œConcentration, dedication, focus and repetition are characteristics that help kids be productive in school, as well as in society. These are also skills that enable shooters to successfully hit the target at which theyâ€™re aiming. Weâ€™re proving that for some students who get involved in archery, the sport helps keep them in school. Archery also helps develop concentration and mental skills,â€ Marshall adds.
The National Archery in Schools Program is a nationwide program teaming education, departments of wildlife, and archery equipment manufacturers to promote lifelong participation in archery. Marshall says students from about 30 schools have been invited to take part in this first Hocking College NASP Invitational where they will compete for awards and Hocking College scholarships.
â€œThis is a nonhunting archery event where shooters aim at competitive targets. We believe young people who get involved in hunting, fishing and other outdoor sports will continue with that sport at a competitive level, and those who develop an interest in archery at an early age might continue with the sport as bow hunters,â€ Marshall said.
Big Buck Scorers
Hunters who have bagged and tagged an Ohio white-tailed deer are invited to bring them to the National Timber and Outdoor Show to be scored by a team of Ohioâ€™s official Buckeye Big Buck scorers. Mike Budzik, retired director of the Ohio Division of Wildlife, says the Big Buck Club was the first of its kind in the nation and originated nearly 40 years ago.
The idea was to bring more trophy-quality deer heads to public attention, as well as to bring a greater appreciation of the eastern white-tailed deer.
â€œIt also fosters sound sportsmanship among Ohioâ€™s deer hunters,â€ Budzik explains.
Scorers will be set up in the Student Center Multiplex alongside a display of some of Ohioâ€™s trophy mounts. â€œItâ€™s deer bow-hunting season and a perfect time to let hunters take advantage of our expert scorers,â€ Budzik says.
Husqvarna and ArborMaster Training will present â€œSee You At The Top!â€ â€” a working demonstration with trees â€” from the ground to the treetops. ArborMaster instructors, including internationally known arborist champion Rip Tompkins, will present exciting and informative demonstrations that will provide an opportunity to see todayâ€™s woodland, residential and urban forest/tree work methods and techniques. Husqvarna, one of the worldâ€™s leading outdoor power equipment companies, will provide opportunities for attendee participation in chain-saw safety, operation, chain sharpening and choosing the saw thatâ€™s right for the operator.
ArborMaster Training is the leading arborist safety training company in the U.S.
Company principals Rip Tompkins and Ken Palmer have created comprehensive education, training and consulting programs and services for all levels of tree care companies and professionals including climbing, felling, rigging, chain-saw safety, emergency response and more.
Husqvara Game of Logging, Collegiate & Landowners Finals
The Game of Logging (GOL) is a four-step chain-saw training program developed by Swedish logging expert Soren Eriksson. GOL training raises the professional standards for loggers in harvesting operations and improves the safety and efficiency of landowners. Two GOL competitions are scheduled as part of the National Timber and Outdoor Show. On Friday the Collegiate Game of Logging brings college students from across the region to compete at the collegiate level, and Saturday brings landowners who will take part in the landowner competition. Widely accepted as the premier timber harvesting training program in the country, GOL teaches competitors safety, productivity, conservation and cutting techniques through hands-on training in a competitive environment.
Wayne National Forest
For Wayne National Forest, itâ€™s all about safety â€” the safety of those who use the forests and Forest Service employees â€” and the natural resources of southeast Ohio. That is why Ohioâ€™s only national forest is co-sponsoring the ATV-demonstration and obstacle-race-course area of the National Timber and Outdoor Show.
Wayne National Forest is home to some 116 miles of motorized trails for two- and four-wheel fun. The goal is to ensure that the sport is available for future riders who visit the forest by promoting safe and responsible riding through participation in the show. Thousands of riders â€” families, clubs and individuals â€” share the motorized trails in the Wayne National Forest every year. The sport is among the fastest-growing forms of recreation in the country. Phil Sammon, public affairs officer with the forest, says, â€œWe want to help safeguard the future of the Wayne through responsible riding.â€
On the racetrack, riders must stay inbounds and ride as safely as possible to win. Likewise, in the forest, riders must stay on the trails and ride safely. In racing, riders only get disqualified if they leave the track. But in the Wayne, in addition to getting a citation, riders who wander off the trails can cause environmental damage as well as damage to the sport.
Visit the Wayne National Forest display to find out more about the latest in safe riding techniques and how to safety-inspect machines. Get help in teaching children and other first-time riders how to ride for their own safety and enjoyment, and how to protect natural resources.
Chamber Challenge, a Bicycle Poker Run
Grab a bicycle and head for the Hockhocking Adena Bikeway via the Inn at Hocking College to take part in the first ever Chamber Challenge, a bicycle poker run, hosted by the Nelsonville Area Chamber of Commerce. (In a poker run, riders stop at checkpoints to pick up a playing card; at the end of the ride, they play their poker hands against those of other participants.) Trophies are sponsored by the Athens Bike Shop and will be presented in two categories, Best of Class and Best Hand. Complimentary hot dogs and Pepsi will be available for riders following the Chamber Challenge. Entry fee is $5 for riders 13 years of age and older. The event begins at 11 a.m. on Saturday on the parking lot of the Inn at Hocking College.
Fishing for fun while learning basic skills is what the Ohio Division of Wildlife hopes to accomplish with youth who take part in the Fishing Derby throughout the weekend. A pond will be stocked with catchable catfish, and the division will supply cane fishing rods to those 16 years of age and under who want to try their luck. â€œFor some, this will be their first fishing experience, but for others it might be the first fish they catch. We look at it as a good opportunity to teach youngsters some of the basic skills of fishing,â€ the Division of Wildlifeâ€™s Marshall says.
National Lumberjack Hall of Fame
Six individuals â€” Frederick (Rick) Bryan III, Rudy Dettmer, Soren Eriksson, Ron Hartill, E.B. (Burns) Miller, and Henry (Hank) Peters â€” were the inaugural inductees into the National Lumberjack Hall of Fame in 2005. The Hall of Fame recognizes those who play significant roles in furthering the development of the timber industry. Memorabilia from Hall of Famers will be included in a permanent display on the Hocking College Campus. A second group of honorees will be introduced on Sunday, the final day of the National Timber and Outdoor Show.
The second annual Timber Trot, a 5K run/walk, will kick off Saturday morning activities with registration at 8 a.m. at the Student Center. The race officially begins 9 a.m., and three awards will be presented in each age group as well as to the top male and female finishers. Entry fee is $20 (proceeds benefit the Hocking College Scholarship Fund) and T-shirts will be given to the first 100 entrants. Registration may be completed prior to the race or online at www.hocking.edu.
Three lumberjack competitions for distinctly different skill levels can be seen at the National Timber and Outdoor Show throughout the weekend. The worldâ€™s best will compete on Sunday during the International Hocking Lumberjack Competition, as West Virginiaâ€™s Bill Gillespie mans the microphone and keeps activities moving along in E.B. Miller Arena. On Saturday, it is Ohio resident lumberjacks who chop and saw for prizes in the Ohio Hocking Lumberjack Competition. Students take center stage and give it their all on Friday in the Collegiate Lumberjack Contests, with teams sponsored by staff from the School of Natural Resources.
Master Chain-Saw-Carving Competition
Chain-saw carvers will compete for prize money in the Master Carving competition held over the three-day period. An auction benefiting the Hocking College Scholarship Fund will sell the remarkable creations of the 20 carvers, who work on their entries throughout the weekend, with the auction as a capstone event on Sunday afternoon. These same carvers will also compete in a Quick Carve competition on Saturday prior to the auction of these items.
Lumberjack Water Show
In the early days of logging, lumberjacks moved logs on the river from the harvest site to locations where they could be more easily loaded and transported. When logjams slowed the flow, the lumberjacks climbed on and with fancy footwork broke the jam apart, freeing the blockages. Today, log birling is fun and entertaining and, depending on whoâ€™s doing it, informative as well. Catch the Hank Peters Lumberjack Water Show with Derek Dusthimer for top-notch log birling, canoe jousting and fine entertainment.
Horse Log Skidding and Obstacle Course
Commands may come with just a shake of a wrist controlling the reins or a simple click of the tongue, but the horses in the log-skidding and obstacle competition understand what their handler is asking of them and respond accordingly. Teams of draft horses (with names like Polly, Beck and Belle) and sometimes a pair of oxen, strive to keep the penalties to a minimum and finish the event with the fewest point deductions.
Antique Steam Equipment
Piles of sawdust fail to drown out the toots and whistles coming from the antique steam equipment demonstration area, where sawmills, planers and veneer mills are located. Shovelfuls of coal are fed into the hungry boilers that keep the equipment operational, and curious onlookers watch until they can claim a piece of veneer to take home. Follow the unmistakable sounds of the machines and experience a bygone era.
ARTS & Craft Tent
The colorfully striped wood arts and craft tent stands out against the backdrop of the log cabin village of Robbins Crossing. Finely turned bowls by Doug Mooney, beautiful handmade baskets, woodcarvings and other fine arts and craft items can be found inside. Visit early for the best selection.
Hocking Valley Scenic Railway
All aboard for a real treat! Hocking Valley Scenic Railway volunteers offer a caboose shuttle ride hourly from Robbins Crossing to the depot in Nelsonville and back. No reservations are needed during the National Timber and Outdoor Show. HVSR offers weekend rides on the passenger train â€” the only remaining train from the Hocking Valley Railroad that ran 138 steam locomotives, 70 passenger cars and 15,000 freight cars along its route during World War II â€” through November 5; reservations are recommended (call 800/967-7834 or 740/753-9531 or visit www.hvsry.org).
More Outdoor Fun
Ever heard of a â€œBig Ear Dogâ€ competition? The National Timber and Outdoor Show is the place to learn more about this growing sport. Labrador retrievers and other big-ear hunting dogs take part in a competition where a decoy is thrown into a pond and the dog jumps from a ramp into the water to retrieve it. The dogs are judged on length of the jump from the ramp as well as how quickly they retrieve the decoy. Those familiar with the sport say it is intended as a hunting exercise. Negotiations are under way to bring a competition to the National Timber and Outdoor Show.
Other show attractions include big, tasty burgers; timber cruising by Future Farmers of America students from throughout Ohioâ€™s high schools; a pallet competition; and exhibits of canoes and trail activities. Hocking Woods Nature Center coordinator Dave Sagan will introduce his hawk and snakes to visitors at the School of Natural Resources tent, which will house a number of exhibits.
There is much to see and do. Visit the National Timber and Outdoor Show where admission is $8 for adults and $5 for students; admission for children 6 years of age and under is free. For more information, call 877/HOCKING or log on to www.hocking.edu.
| THE LEGEND LIVES!
Just like old times, the Jordanaires, Elvis Presleyâ€™s original back-up singers, and the King of Rock and Roll will share the stage, but this time itâ€™s Southeastern Ohioâ€™s own Dwight Icenhower paying tribute. The extraordinarily talented Jordanaires harmonized for 14 years on all of Elvisâ€™ RCA recordings. They also either appeared in or were on the soundtracks of 28 Elvis movies, and the group performed with the King at all his concerts. John Burns and Diamond Exports are bringing the original Jordanaires and the exceptionally talented Dwight Icenhower to the National Timber and Outdoor Show to perform a concert on Friday, October 6, at 8 p.m. For ticket information, call 1/877-HOCKING.
More on the National Timber & Outdoor Show
Schedule of Events
History Comes Alive
A Walk Through Time