Meet the Candidates | PA/NJ-TACF Board of Directors

Candidates for the 2022-23 term

Election ballots have been mailed to members. If you are a member and did not receive a ballot please contact the Chapter Administrator at 814-863-7192| mail@patacf.org

New on the Ballot:
Ed Regina

Starting out as a high school biology teacher in Annapolis MD, Ed  retired after 33 years as an assistant principal. But while still teaching he had targeted Christmas trees as a favorite hobby and future income. He started a small-scale Christmas tree farm on family land in East Stroudsburg, PA in 1980. By 1988 he was traveling up on weekends to stand in the cold and help local families find their perfect tree to cut. Over the years, the Christmas tree farm has evolved into a full-service, three-season garden center that Ed still manages, a second full-time career.

He began thinking of chestnuts as companions to Christmas trees sold during the holiday season. After all, Christmas trees and American chestnuts go together like Thanksgiving and turkey. Ed envisioned selling chestnuts with Christmas trees during the holiday season and found his way to TACF.

He looks forward to bringing his experience as a commercial Christmas tree grower to the Chapter Board especially in highlighting the importance of soil quality.

 

Don’t Forget the American chestnut!

As you contemplate end-of-year giving, please remember the PA/NJ Chapter of TACF.

The restoration the American chestnut is the work of generations and your annual contributions play an important role in moving that work forward.

Research and Outreach needs:

  • Help us build a shed to house a high light chamber to pursue pollen production
  • Herbicide Spray Trailer
  • Orchard iPad for tracking plantings
  • Branded pencils and other prizes for children attending events like the PA Farm Show, Ag Progress Days, etc.

Donations of all sizes are welcome!

Make checks payable to PA/NJ TACF:

Penn State University
108 Business Services
206 Forest Resources Lab
University Park, PA 16802

Or Donate Online Today!

 

Bridging the Distance Gap with Local Connections

Seeking Volunteers to Help Facilitate Communications with Local Districts of the PA/NJ Chapter

As we look forward with hope that 2022 will bring a renewal of in-person activities, the Board of Directors of PA/NJ TACF is putting out a call for District Liaisons (DL) — volunteers whose role will be to facilitate communications and cooperation with individuals and organizations within their district.

The PA/NJ Chapter covers almost 54,000 square miles, and this makes it difficult for our staff and board to have sufficient personal contact with our members.  DLs can help to bridge this gap as local representatives. The primary mission of the DL is to engage the membership.  An engaged membership is more likely to sustain interest in TACF’s mission, volunteer for local projects, and interest others in forest and chestnut conservation and restoration.

A Plan in Development

We’re still working out the details and flexibility will be the order of the day. It is understood that DLs will bring their own strengths and interests to the role and we welcome this diversity to what will continue to be a team effort. We look forward to working with DLs to help them get to know their district, make connections, and strengthen our effort to restore the American chestnut.

Learn more about the role of District Liaisons for the PA/NJ Chapter please contact the Chapter Administrator, Jean Najjar at 814-863-7192 | mail@patacf.org

 

2022 PA Farm Show is Back!

We’re hopefully optimistic that we will be back in person at the 2022 PA Farm Show (January 8th to 15th). Please consider volunteering for one or more 4-hour shifts and help share the story of the American chestnut with the public. Sign up with friends or family and make a day of it.

Sign up to volunteer here!

Check out photos below from PA Farm Shows past:

Learn more about the PA Farm Show!

We participated virtually at the 2021 Show. Check out our PA Farm Show Webinar Series here.

Beautiful Day to Remember a Friend

On Sunday, September 26th friends, family, and volunteers gathered to remember the contributions of David J. Armstrong with the rededication of TACF Chestnut Orchard at Codorus State Park. New signage describing Dave’s contribution to our Chapter and our restoration mission has been developed by the PA/NJ Chapter and installed with the help of Park staff and volunteers. To read more about Dave’s contributions to our Chapter and TACF’s restoration mission follow this link.

W. V Chapter of TACF Invitation

Photo credit: https://home.nps.gov/neri/learn/photosmultimedia/index.htm

American Chestnut Sustainability Germplasm Conservation Orchard Plantings
Summit Bechtel Reserve   
Saturday, October 23, 2021

The West Virginia Chapter is seeking help planting American chestnut trees on Saturday, October 23rd at Germplasm Conservations orchards at the Summit Bechtel Reserve. Volunteers are welcome to come for the day or campout for the weekend. 

TACF is providing lunch for volunteers on Saturday. Volunteers should come prepared with appropriate work clothes and footwear for working in dirt. Volunteers are also asked to bring their own shovel, gloves, hat, suntan lotion, bug spray. Work will be divided between three orchard sites based on the number of volunteers. 

Saturday Only Volunteers

Start Time: 9AM Saturday Morning
Meeting Place: New River Gorge National Park office parking lot. Volunteers will be met by a guide and caravan to the orchard locations.

Campers

Start Time: 4 PM Friday Afternoon, October 22nd.
Meeting Place: Gather in the parking lot of the New River Gorge National Park office in Glen Jean and caravan through Summit Bechtel Reserve to the campsite at the Summit of Summit.

Campers must bring their own camping gear, food, and water. Camping is primitive (no electric or water). Porta johns available.

Vehicles may drive and park at the campsite and campers should avoid  unnecessary vehicle traffic in Summit

For more information or to volunteer please contact:
Sam Muncy
Treasurer WV Chapter TACF
Sam.muncy@msesinc.com

Planting Day Schedule | Saturday, October 23rd

9:00 PM: Volunteers meet at Park office and caravan to orchard sites

 9:30 AM: Work begins: Planting American chestnut saplings and making tree cages from wire fencing.

12:00 PM Noon: Cold cut sandwiches, fruit, and bottled water will be provided free by TACF for Saturday lunch

5:00 PM: Work may wrap up earlier depending on number of volunteers. 

Youth Protection Training (YPT) is required.
YPT takes 30 minutes at https://www.scouting.org/training/youth-protection/

 Summit Bechtel Reserve is the High Adventure Base – National Boy Scout Camp of the Boy Scouts of America. YPT is required by the Boy Scouts for any volunteers who will be with scouts.  YPT is good for two years and is very good training for anyone who will be working with youth of any organization.  You do not have to join scouts to take the training.  It is free but you do have to register with the Boy Scouts to take the training.

2021 Fall Member Meeting

Join us for this Zoom meeting on November 6th focused on the American chestnut and our restoration efforts. Sara Fitzsimmons, Director of Restoration and Stephen Hoy, Orchard Manager at Penn State will make short presentations with plenty opportunity for new and experienced growers to connect, ask questions, and share experiences.

Saturday, November 6th  |  10:00 AM—11:30 AM

Via Zoom

Register today and we’ll send you timely reminders with the link to join the meeting. For more informaiton contact Jean Najjar (mail@patacf.org | 814-863-7192)

We are thrilled that our plans to host Douglas Tallamy and Kimberly Bohn in-person at the Allen Theatre have only been postponed. Mark your calendars to enjoy these speakers and hip venue at our Spring Growers Meeting April 2, 2022.

NEW Fall Member Meeting Program:

Take a deep dive into chestnut restoration with Sara Fitzsimmons and Steve Hoy at the Fall Member Meeting


Sara Fitzsimmons

Director of Restoration
The American Chestnut Foundation

Restoration  Science at the Chapter Level
Sara will review the current scientific status of American chestnut rescue and restoration, including the most up-to-date data retrieved from hybrid genotyping and transgenic deregulation.

 

 

Stephen Hoy
Orchard Manager
Penn State University

Field Activities: Chestnut Research at Penn State
Steve will review 2021 field activities including grafting, pollination, inoculation and harvest. He will also talk about what’s ahead for orchard research at Penn State.