The Calcasieu Ranger District of the Kisatchie National Forest, U.S. Forest Service, hosted the annual Vernon Parish Forest Awareness on May 11-14 at Little Cypress Recreation Area.

The Calcasieu Ranger District of the Kisatchie National Forest, U.S. Forest Service, hosted the annual Vernon Parish Forest Awareness on May 11-14 at Little Cypress Recreation Area.

Forest Awareness is an annual event in which fifth-graders from Vernon Parish schools rotate through seven outdoor classes at Little Cypress Recreation Area. Topics presented at each class are designed to introduce the students to natural resource management by providing informative displays on land management techniques, natural resource-based interactive activities and hands-on demonstrations on how to use much of the field equipment used by local land management companies and agencies in the area.

Each of the seven classes were taught by natural resource professionals on a variety of natural resource management topics ranging from wildlife, forest technology and measurements, forest biodiversity, forest protection and fire, forest products, forest litter and trash dumping and soil and water resources.

Each fifth-grade class rotated through the seven stations for a 20-minute lesson on each topic. Multiple private forest companies, state and federal agencies partnered with the Calcasieu Ranger District to make this event a huge success for the kids. These partners included the Vernon Parish School Board, Hancock Forest Management, Boise Cascade, LSU AgCenter, Fort Polk Conservation Branch, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, Bennett Timber Co., Molphus Timberlands Management, La. Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and La. Department of Agriculture and Forestry.

Over 650 Vernon Parish fifth-grade students participated in this year’s Forest Awareness.

The Calcasieu Ranger District plans to continue partnering with the Vernon Parish School Board, local forestry companies and state and federal agencies to teach Vernon Parish fifth-graders the importance of a healthy ecosystem by way of effective land management techniques and land stewardship activities through this annual event.