Design and Maintenance:
HemlockFest, hosted by the Lumpkin Coalition, is an annual festival held
the first full weekend in November. The Festival and the proceeds from
the festival are used to increase public awareness of eastern and Carolina
hemlock tree problems and to provide financial support for the following:
all three labs in Georgia (University of Georgia, Young Harris College, and
North Georgia College and State University) raising predatory beetles to
combat the destructive hemlock woolly adelgid an aphid-like insect native
to Asia; assist private land owners and public agencies in managing the
health of their Hemlock trees; and to facilitate other projects that benefit
north Georgia, Lumpkin County, its residents and visitors.
Hemlock stands are among the only old growth forests in the east and are
of great importance to wildlife, water quality, economy, and basic quality of
Festival activities include live music, primitive camping, knife throwing and
archery, canoeing on Lake Merlin, arts & crafts demonstrations, interactive
presentations and exhibits, experts are on hand to answer your questions
about the hemlocks, there are kid-friendly activites, a silent auction, and
Vendors provide food & drink (including beer and with proper
identification), jewelry, pottery, wood, stone and metal sculptures, Native
American crafts, paintings, watercolors, photography, clothing, herbs,
furniture, and festival merchandise for sale. This list is not comprehensive
and tends to grow each year!
What to Expect -Please Read!-
The University of Georgia Dept. of Entomology would
like to extend our heartfelt thanks and congratulations
to the Lumpkin Coalition for their strong,
well-balanced approach towards grass-roots participation
in an emergency effort such as the HWA Control Project.
Your organization was one of the first to respond
in an organized fashion, and has staunchly supported everything
that we- the southern labs- have tried to accomplish. Your
tenacity in staying on-point is remarkable, as this
has become a long-term struggle for survival of hemlocks as a
component of our climax forest in the Southern Appalachians.
Please know that your efforts have indeed made a
difference and are appreciated by all. And Hemlockfest.......what
an incredible, productive event that has become!! Truly outstanding
and a model for any other groups trying to spread the word and raise
funding for worthy causes. Congratulations and many thanks for all you do.
Stay the course, and remember that beetles save needles. Cheers!
M. Dalusky; Research Coordinator
Forest Entomology, Univ. of Georgia