2021 Annual Oregon Logging Conference Cancelled at Lane County Events Center and Fairgrounds
It is with regret that the Board of Directors announced today that the 2021 Oregon Logging Conference (OLC) at the Lane Events Center and Fairgrounds will not be taking place in February of next year. “After much discussion and based on the current and anticipated COVID-19 related restrictions next year, the Board of Directors has made this decision,” said OLC President Scott Melcher. He said it was a difficult decision to make. “We looked at a number of ways to have the conference as usual in Eugene, but just could not make it work with the restrictions in place,” Melcher said. On a positive note, even though the conference in Eugene is cancelled, there will be an 83rd Annual OLC with some of the traditional conference activities. “We will celebrate our conference in February of 2021, but in new ways,” Melcher said. Planning is underway for a series of sawdust bowls, which will offer multiple opportunities for OLC supporters to socialize and network. “We hope that members of the OLC, friends, and family will join us at the location most convenient to them,” Melcher said. “We know there are in-person gathering limits, so by having more than one sawdust bowl in more than one location, we can adhere to those guidelines, but still get together,” Melcher added. A tentative schedule of the sawdust bowls to be held in February 2021 in Sweet Home, Prineville, Roseburg, Philomath, Coos Bay, and Eugene, OR, and Vancouver BC Canada can be found on the OLC website, www.oregonloggingconference.com. Several current topic seminars and panel discussions are being scheduled, some may be available for limited in-person attendance, and others will be pre-recorded. A Hands-on-Seminar will explore New Products and Practices for Cable Assist Logging. Other topics include the Oregon Forest Practices Act, Better Ideas/New Technology in Logging, the Three C’s (Communication, Coordination, and Cooperation) around High Voltage Facilities, and Your Voice – Your Vote Counts. To kick-off the celebration of the 83rd Annual OLC, a fundraising dinner is planned, with proceeds raised to benefit the OLC Recovery & Repair Fire Relief Fund. This dinner is tentatively scheduled for Saturday, February 6, 2021 at the Sweet Home Supper Club in Sweet Home. OR. This will be a limited attendance event and will take place in compliance with any restrictions that are in place at that time. “The money raised will benefit Oregon contractors who suffered losses during the wildfires this year,” Melcher said. The Oregon Logging Conference is continuing to explore other ways to hold traditional conference activities. “We welcome participation in any or all of the events that we will be holding, but fully respect some who may choose not to participate,” Melcher said. “These are challenging times for all of us,” he added, “and we are planning new ways we can still celebrate OLC and do so in a safe manner.” Wellman said the cancellation of the Annual Oregon Logging Conference will have a significant financial impact in the area. “The annual conference brings in millions of dollars to the communities of Eugene and Springfield as well as Lane County,” she said. The revenue comes from money spent at hotels, restaurants, and other retail outlets. The Oregon Logging Conference was established in1938 and operates as a nonprofit organization.On a separate note, the Oregon Logging Conference Foundation (OLCF) will continue supporting its annual scholarship program. Since 1968, the OLCF scholarship program has provided over $975,000 in scholarships to college students throughout the northwest who have enrolled in forest related courses. Reserve the dates for the 84th Annual Oregon Logging Conference, February 24, 25, & 26, 2022.