The 2021 Oregon Logging Conference, scheduled to be held in Eugene, Oregon, Feb. 24-26, has been canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The conference board of directors announced the cancelation in late November. “After much discussion and based on the current and anticipated COVID-19 related restrictions next year, the board of directors has made this decision,” said OLC president Scott Melcher in a prepared statement.
“We looked at a number of ways to have the conference as usual in Eugene,” he added, “but just could not make it work with the restrictions in place.” Nevertheless, organizers are planning to hold the 83rd annual event with some traditional activities. “We will celebrate our conference in February of 2021, but in new ways,” said Melcher. Planning is underway for a series of ‘sawdust bowls’ that will offer multiple opportunities for OLC supporters to socialize and network.
“We hope that members of the OLC, friends, and family will join us at the location most convenient to them,” said Melcher. “We know there are in-person gathering limits, so by having more than one sawdust bowl in more than one location, we can adhere to those guidelines, but still get together.”
A tentative schedule of the sawdust bowls to be held in February in Oregon — in Sweet Home, Prineville, Roseburg, Philomath, Coos Bay, and Eugene — and Vancouver, British Columbia, can be found on the OLC website, www.oregonloggingconference.com. Several seminars and panel discussions are being scheduled; some may be available for limited in-person attendance, and others will be pre-recorded. A Hands-on-Seminar will explore New Products and Practices for Cable Assist Logging. Other topics include the Oregon Forest Practices Act, Better Ideas/New Technology in Logging, the Three C’s (Communication, Co-
ordination, and Cooperation) around High Voltage Facilities, and Your Voice – Your
Vote Counts. The event will kick off with a fundraising dinner to benefit the OLC Re-
covery & Repair Fire Relief Fund. “The money raised will benefit Oregon contractors who suffered losses during the wildfires this year,” said Melcher.
The dinner is tentatively scheduled for Feb. 6 at the Sweet Home Supper Club in Sweet Home, Oregon. Attendance will be limited, and the event will comply with any public health restrictions that are in place at the time.
Organizers are continuing to explore other ways to hold traditional conference activities. “We welcome participation in any or all of the events that we will be holding, but fully respect some who may choose not to participate,” said Melcher. “These are challenging times for all of us,” he added, “and we are planning new ways we can still celebrate OLC and do so in a safe manner.” The 84th annual Oregon Logging Conference will be held February 24-26, 2022.