Event: Calling all woodsmen! Woodsmen Festival at Hanford Mills Museum on Saturday, May 4, 2013

Carving, cutting, chopping, building, sawing, shaping, and finishing. The Woodsmen’s Festival at Hanford Mills Museum celebrates the many ways people use and work with wood. A perennial highlight of the Festival, which will be held on Saturday, May 4 from 10 am – 5 pm, is the lumberjack skills demonstrated by the Woodsmen’s Team from the SUNY College of Agriculture and Technology at Cobleskill. The men and women of the Woodsmen’s Team, who participate in intercollegiate competitions and practice five nights a week, will demonstrate cross-cut sawing, overhand and underhand chop, ax throwing, and other lumberjack skills.

New this year is an expanded list of woodworking exhibitors, including carving and traditional hand woodworking by members of the Northeast Woodworkers Association; timber frame building by Hanford Mills staff; coopering by Bob Allers; and creating a shoulder yoke with an adz and crooked knife by Barry Keegan. Bernd Krause will be demonstrating and talking about his replica of a 17th century lathe, its use at the time, and how it was built.

Throughout the day, the Museum will give tours and demonstrations of its historic water-powered sawmill and woodworking machines. For more than a century, Hanford Mills provided East Meredith and surrounding communities with the lumber needed to build homes, barns and fences, as well as finished wood products, including butter tub covers and milk bottle crates for the region’s many dairy farms. Historic cooking demonstrations will be taking place in the John Hanford Farmhouse, where visitors also can learn more about home life in the 1920s.

“With a new array of presenters and exhibits, plus perennial favorites like the SUNY Cobleskill Woodsmen’s Team and their incredible strength, speed and skills, the Woodsmen’s Festival is a great way to kick off the Museum’s 40th anniversary season,” says Liz Callahan, the Museum’s executive director. “We welcome everyone to come out to Hanford Mills and enjoy.” She noted that this will be the first public operation of the historic water-powered sawmill in 2013.

The Catskill Regional Invasive Species Partnership (CRISP) will lead “Alien Invader” tree walks throughout the day, identifying trees and talking about the invasive forest pest that threaten them, including the emerald ash borer, the Asian long-horned beetle, and the hemlock wooly adelgid. Bovina Brown Bats will have an exhibit about bats and the impact of White Nose Syndrome and offer bat houses, wooden folk art and wooden toys for sale. The Hobart Book Village will have a selection of books and paper gift items for sale. Eagle Ridge BBQ will be selling barbeque pork, burgers, fresh-cut fries, chili, hotdogs and beverages.

The Woodsmen’s Festival also features children’s activities and visitors are welcome to explore the Museum’s 70-acre site. The Museum’s gift shop will be open, offering Mill-made crafts, traditional toys, sweets, books and local products.

Admission and Information
Children 12 and under are free. Adults are $8.50, seniors are $6.50. AAA and other discounts available. Museum members receive free admission.

About Hanford Mills Museum
Hanford Mills Museum, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2013, operates an authentic water and steam-powered historic site. The mission of Hanford Mills Museum is to inspire audiences of all ages to explore connections among energy, technology, natural resources and entrepreneurship in rural communities with a focus on sustainable choices. The Museum, which is listed on the National and New York State Registers of Historic Places, will open for the season May 15.

Hanford Mills Museum is located at 51 County Highway 12 in East Meredith, at the intersection of Delaware County Routes 10 & 12, just 10 miles from Oneonta, and 15 miles from Delhi. For more information, visit www.hanfordmills.org or call 607.278.5744.

For More Information on the Catskill Mountain Region

Check out our Catskill Mountain Outdoors Information Page for our guide to hikes, walks, camping, advice and planning information in the Catskill Mountains. 

Need a hiking map for the Catskills?  The Trail Conference publishes the Catskills Trails Map Set, which is the best set of maps available for hiking in the Catskills.  How about a guidebook?  Both AMC and ADK publish Trail Guides to the Catskill Region and thAdventures in the Outdoors Bookstore carries many more books and maps for hiking and exploring the Catskill Mountain region.