WATERVILLE, Pa., Sept. 18, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Richard Allan today toured the 1,200-square feet of new exhibits during an open house at the Tiadaghton Resource Management Center in Waterville, Lycoming County.
Originally opened in Sept. 2010, the center serves to welcome visitors to the nearby and popular Pine Creek Rail Trail. It also houses the Bureau of Forestry District 12 office.
"The center is one of a kind in the Bureau of Forestry and features a large exhibit space that overlooks the majestic Pine Creek Valley," Allan said. "The new exhibits tell the story of the valley, Pennsylvania's early logging era, and the management of state forest lands."
- A working model railroad that shows what timber harvesting looked like in the Pine Creek Valley at the turn of the century and interprets the lumbering heritage of the region;
- A 180-gallon aquarium featuring our state fish, the brook trout, as well as other stream dwellers;
- An interactive touch map of the Pennsylvania Wilds that features many of the most popular destinations and introduces visitors to the full range of recreational opportunities in the region;
- A Pine Creek flora and fauna display with touch screens that provide information about the plants and animals of the region;
- An exhibit that features four short videos on forest management in Pennsylvania;
- An observation deck that interprets the green roof and native plants used for landscaping and features viewing scopes as well as a log slide replica similar to those used to transport logs down the steep hillsides at the turn of the century;
- A touch screen exhibit entitled Forest Challenges that helps visitors understand the entire suite of threats to the forest, from invasive plants and animals to fire, flood, disease and development;
- An interpretive display of the many large birds common to the skies of the Pine Creek Valley;
- An exhibit entitled Conservation Heroes that features video vignettes of the major historical figures in Pennsylvania forest conservation and the impact they had; and
- A reception area that offers a scavenger hunt of the building features that provide it with its Gold LEED rating and a computer that visitors may use to explore websites with information about the Pine Creek Valley and the Pennsylvania Wilds.
"The center and interpretive exhibits are a great way for DCNR to interact with the people visiting our lands to take advantage of the hiking, biking, hunting and paddling opportunities in the Pine Creek Valley," Allan said. "It will give them a better understanding of how today's state forests with their wealth of recreational opportunities and other benefits came to be protected, and how they are managed to ensure their future health."
Allan also noted that the center and exhibits are a key investment in the Pennsylvania Wilds effort to attract people and connect them to the outdoor opportunities in the region.
The 12,655-square foot center has many green features, including the first living roof in the DCNR system, planted with various types of sedums, and was built on a previously developed site, which avoided the need to disturb vital greenspace.
Other green features include geothermal heating, a rainwater reuse system, a landscaping design that incorporates native plants to retain stormwater; and sustainably harvested wood.
For more information about the Tiadaghton State Forest, visit www.dcnr.state.pa.us and choose "Find a Forest."
Media contact: Christina Novak, 717-772-9101
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources