By CALVIN PYNN
To celebrate its centennial, the Virginia Department of Forestry (VDOF) has organized a number of events and activities scheduled throughout the year and across the Commonwealth.
According to a release from VDOF spokesperson Jim Moeller, people can help recognize this milestone by attending one or more of the activities scheduled this year. The centennial anniversary will first be celebrated at the Toyota 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Richmond International Raceway on Saturday, April 26.
The following week, Acting State Forester Rob Farrell and Smokey Bear will be in the Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival Parades on Friday, May 2 and Saturday, May 3. There will also be an exhibit of VDOF vehicles at the Virginia Transportation Museum in Roanoke from Saturday, May 10 through Monday, June 30.
Later in the summer, an exhibit of 19 original Smokey Bear paintings by Rudy Wendelin will be on exhibit at The Chrysler Museum of Art beginning Saturday, Aug. 9 which also happens to be Smokey the Bear’s 70th birthday. The exhibit will run through February of 2015.
According to Moeller, Smokey Bear and the VDOF’s new state forester will also be the grand marshals at the Richmond Christmas Parade in early December.
People in the commonwealth can also purchase a $5 million Virginia Lottery scratch-off ticket called Money Money Money, which contains a VDOF anniversary message on the reverse side.
Copies of the 2014 Virginia State Map are also due to be released in June. The 2 million copies of the map feature the Virginia Department of Forestry and Virginia’s state forests throughout.