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Forestry Specialist to Lecture on American Chestnut

(Posted August 12, 2002)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- A senior research technologist in Penn State's School of Forest Resources will talk about the restoration of the American chestnut tree to the nation's forests at 8:30 p.m. Aug. 10 at the Seven Points Recreation Area amphitheatre as part of the Juniata College Summer Environmental Education Program.

Tim Phelps, senior research technologist in the School of Forest Resources, will present an overview of the American Chestnut Foundation's efforts to restore the American chestnut to its native range. Earlier in the century, a pathogen, chestnut blight, eliminated the chestnut as a major American hardwood. Phelps will describe the breeding program in which scientists plan to crossbreed the Chinese chestnut, which is resistant to chestnut blight, with an American chestnut.

Phelps earned his bachelor's and master's degrees in forestry, both at Southern Illinois University. He is a board member of the Pennsylvania chapter of the American Chestnut Foundation.

Juniata College's environmental education programs at Seven Points are sponsored by a college alumni group, the Friends of the Raystown Field Station.

The Seven Points Recreation Area amphitheater is adjacent to the Seven Points Visitors Center. The Seven Points Recreation Area is near Hesston, Pa., several miles off Route 26.

Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.