A century ago, President Theodore Roosevelt signed a proclamation creating the Columbia National Forest. July 1, 2008, will mark the anniversary of the executive order that established the national forest.
In 1949 the Columbia National Forest was renamed to honor Gifford Pinchot, the first chief of the agency.
To commemorate this event the staff of the Gifford Pinchot National Forest is inviting the public to visit several Forest offices on July 1 to enjoy historic displays, tours, presentations, view historic photos from the Forest over the past century and have a birthday cupcake (while supplies last).
More information about these events is available online at the Forest centennial website events page.
On July 1, the Mount Adams Ranger District in Trout Lake is hosting historic walking tours at the ranger station from 2-4 p.m., a wildflower hike at 4 p.m., and will have cupcakes for the public while they last.
Also on July 1, the Cowlitz Valley Ranger District will have a centennial celebration from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. including a barbecue lunch for the visiting public.
At the Forest Headquarters in Vancouver, historic displays, photographs, commemorative items, and cupcakes while they last will greet the visiting public on July 1.
The National Forest system was established in the Pacific Northwest from existing federal Forest Reserve lands. This event followed on the heels of the act which made the U.S. Forest Service a new federal agency in 1905. A series of Proclamations and Executive Orders created the first national forests in 1907 and 1908.
"This is a fantastic opportunity to reflect on the many accomplishments, changes, major events and growth that has occurred in the Forest during the past 100 years, and to celebrate our first century as a National Forest, managed for 'the greatest good for the greatest number, in the long run,' as envisioned by Gifford Pinchot," said Lynn Burditt, acting forest supervisor of the Gifford Pinchot National Forest.
A variety of other commemorative activities and events are planned throughout 2008 to celebrate the centennial.
Visitors to the Forest can find more information at the Forest centennial website at www.fs.fed.us/gpnf which features historical information about the forest, a calendar of centennial events, and historic images from the past 100 years.
The Forest has produced a commemorative centennial tear map of the Forest which visitors can use to navigate the Forest this year and which also lists a number of historic sites around the Forest for people to visit.
A series of historic photographs can be viewed on digital picture frames at each Ranger District office and at the Forest Headquarters office in Vancouver as well as online at the Forest's Centennial website.
The Northwest Interpretive Association has also produced several commemorative items that will be for sale at Forest offices this summer.