Programs Announced for Annual Woodhick Weekend

Parker Dam 2

PENFIELD – Officials at the Parker Dam State Park have announced the program scheduled for the annual Woodhick Weekend on Aug. 29-31.

Friday, Aug. 29

Woodsmen and River Drivers

2 p.m. – Environmental Education Classroom

They were a different caliber of men from an era that has gone by.  However, their story is the story of Parker Dam’s early history.  Learn more about their life while doing one of the most dangerous jobs of the time.

History Walk

7 p.m. – Beach House 

Take a step back in time, or perhaps many of them as we walk around the lake and discuss the history of the park area.  We will end up back where we started, physically and chronologically (plus an hour).

Saturday, Aug. 30

Splash Dams on the Beach

3 p.m. – Beach 

Build a splash dam on the beach and then drive scale model logs to the sawmill.  Learn how woodhicks got their timber to market before chainsaws, skidders, log trucks, or even trains ~ using the power of water and their know-how.  If you have beach buckets bring them along to help haul water.

Woodhick Tips

7 p.m. – Campground Amphitheater 

Want to get the advantage on the other woodhick competitors?  Learn how to improve your score for the Woodhick Games held on Sunday in the events of Cross-cut Sawing, Log Rolling, Doo-doo Dropping, and Seed Spitting.  Strategies and techniques discussed.

Virgin Timber and Filtered Sunlight

8:30 p.m. – Campground Amphitheater 

In 1971, during a cleaning out of the Warren Forest District office a film was discovered on a forgotten shelf.  It was a film shot in 1926 of the Central Pennsylvania Lumber Company’s timbering operations in Bear Creek (about six miles west of Ridgway).  Enjoy this short film of the hemlock lumbering era.

Sunday, Aug. 31

Lumbering Skills Demonstrations

Pennsylvania Professional Lumberjack Organization

12 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. – Woodhick Games Field 

Many specialized skills made a woodhick valuable in the forest.  Their hard work and skills were put to the test each day as they faced one of the most dangerous jobs of their time.  Today, the stakes aren’t quite as high, but the skill level is.  Watch as members of the PA Professional Lumberjacks demonstrate their skills and explain how what they do was useful in the forests to the earlier woodhicks.

31st Annual Woodhick Games

1 p.m. – 5 p.m. – Woodhick Games Field 

Test your traditional woodhick skills against other amateur woodhicks in six events:  cross-cut sawing, log rolling, seed spitting, horse-shoe pitching, hatchet slinging, and doo-doo dropping.  Best score will win you an event; best overall score will give you the coveted title of Woodhick or Woodchick of the Year.  There’s a Junior division for those who are 12 and under.  Register for free at the table in the grove above the Cabin Road (look for the banner) so that you can participate in the Woodhick Games.  Note: If you win an individual event, or Woodhick/Woodchick of the Year, you MUST be at the Woodhick Awards program at 6:30 p.m. to receive your prize.

Arrival of Smokey Bear

1 p.m. – Woodhick Games Field

Smokey Bear will be in the park for a while to greet the competitors, their families, and other park visitors.  Be sure to go up and say hello, he’s always glad to make new friends.

Woodhick Camp Demonstrations

1 p.m. – 5 p.m. – Woodhick Games Field 

Watch the camp cooks demonstrate their task of feeding the many hungry woodsmen, and the blacksmith, as he shows off his skills with iron.  Other woodhicks will demonstrate the skills and technique needed to build rafts of timber to be floated out of the woods to the mills downstream.  Look also for the tools-of-the-time display and the traditional Bean-hole Beans to be removed from the ground.

Log Birling Demonstration

5:30 p.m. – Lake Shore, below the Woodhick Games Field 

Driving logs downriver, it was a skill you must possess, or face deadly consequences.  Here the stakes aren’t quite as high– but bragging rights are on the line.

2014 Woodhick Awards

6:30 p.m. – Woodhick Games Field

The competitors have given it their all, now it’s time to reward them.  The winners of each event will be awarded their prizes; however, winners must be present this year to receive their treasures.  Then, we will crown the 2014 Woodhick, Woodchick Jr. Woodhick and Jr. Woodchick of the Year.  Bring along a lawn chair.

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