Frederick County

Forest Conservancy District Board

September 14, 2009 Meeting Minutes

Those present: Keith Schoonover, George Lewis, Ginny Brace, Tom Anderson, Tyson Rose, Mike Kay

  1. Call to order: Keith called the meeting to order and July’s minutes were approved as written.

  2. Treasurer’s Report: Tom relayed a balance of $11,632.59 in the Treasury. Tom also mentioned that the Board received $1,900 from Frederick County a 5% reduction from our normal grant. In the wake of these uneasy budgetary times this represents a very generous allotment.

  3. Logging site exams: One plan came in from the Middletown area. Mike will plan on visiting the property on Tuesday, September 22, 2009; and, will be leaving Gambrill by 8:15 am that morning. Please let Mike Know if you want to accompany him.

  4. Nature Notes: Ginny indicated that the last two weeks were the only time that Nature Notes did not run in the paper. One week was due to vacations while the other was a time when space was at a premium. Nonetheless, our column ran in last week’s edition and we fully expect to have regular contributions going forward. Ginny is going to announce that articles are being posted on the Forestry Board Web Site, to give the Board some credit and direct folks to Tyson’s excellent web site.

  5. NRCC Camp: The following is an excerpt from an email Lynne sent me. All: I'm emailing you this account of my experience at NRCC since I am unable to attend the Sept. meeting. NRCC 2009 was a great success. Everything went smoothly. I was there the entire week to help out the staff: Gabrielle Oldham, Cecil County Forestry Board Chair, is the NRCC Director; Steve Resh, Forestry Professor from Allegany College of Maryland, is the Curriculum Director; Connie Hoge, Carroll County Forestry Board Chair, is the Logistics Director. Steve brought 7 of his 2nd-year ACM students to serve as group leaders. We had 2 former NRCC graduates serve as staff assistants plus 2 Night Supervisors. Thirty-five high school students attended NRCC from across MD plus one each from PA, VA, and DC. Each small group had 5 students, a fantastic 1:5 teacher-to-student ratio. Thirteen students opted to take the mastery ACM exam to earn 2 college credits; all passed the test with over 75% scoring "A" or "B'. The FCFB sponsored Tyler Porter, a student from Baltimore County. Two Harford County students were voted by the ACM group leaders as "Outstanding Students of the Week" and each was awarded Brown and Brown's _Woody Plants of Maryland_ reference book, supplied by Pepco and the Montgomery County Forestry Board. Wonderful news: NRCC has been selected as the first recipient of the TREE Fund's Arboriculture Education Program Grant that I applied for back in April, and will receive $5000!

  6. Interpretive Signs: Mike relayed how he discussed setting up a semi-permanent tree identification trail at Gambrill with Ranger Erin Thomas. Erin thought it was a good idea and we set out to find a relatively short trail, with good accessibility, with a lot of tree diversity. We thought that installing permanent signs near each tree would be the best way to develop this area. (So that guided and self-guided tours would be possible.) With this in mind Mike and MCC Crew members Ken Miller and Mandy Wegmann walked some trails noting tree species. We found that the Red Trail at Gambrill was the best area for our purposes being ½ mile long, fairly level, and with about 40 different species of trees. Once we located this trail, Ken put together a sample sign for the white oak which could be used as a prototype. Ken instructed Mike how to use the software package to replicate these signs . Mike distributed a copy of this prototype to those present for comment. Everybody thought the sign looked good and offered some comments for refinement. Ginny said she will take this rendering to her sign maker to inquire about the costs associated with producing a useable sign. Mike asked that the Board consider funding the printing of signs and purchase of stakes to support the signs. After some discussion a motion was made to commit up to $2,000 for this project after receiving costs estimates from Ginny. The motion was seconded and passed by all those present. Mike indicated that he will try to develop additional signage for the 40 remaining trees on our list over the next couple of months, hopefully employing some help from the incoming MCC Crew. Tyson said he could add these signs to the Web Site and everybody thought this would be a good idea.

  7. Big Tree: Tyson communicated with Lynne about the Board assisting with vine removal in a Big Tree located in our county. Since nobody was sure of the circumstances surrounding this tree we thought it would be best to table this until Lynne can return to fill us in.

  8. Web Site: Tyson mentioned that he is working hard to keep the site up to date and welcomes new articles anytime.