Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness celebrates 14 years

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A “colorized” version of the original sketch of the Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness logo. (Photo by Marla Groot Nibbelink)

Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness will host an anniversary celebration on Sunday, Jan. 13 in Sandpoint to mark 14 years since the group’s founding.

FSPW began on Jan. 14, 2005, when, “a small group of visionaries sketched out a plan to advocate for designation of Scotchman Peaks as a National Wilderness,” according to an FSPW press release. There are now almost 8,500 “Friends” claimed by the group.

“A lot has happened since, a great deal of it good and some not so good, but FSPW is still working toward that same goal,” the press release states.

To mark the anniversary, FSPW will host a celebration on Jan. 13, from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., at the Pend Oreille Arts Council gallery on the second floor of Cedar Street Bridge in Sandpoint.

According to the press release, “The party will feature live entertainment from John Hastings and The StoryTelling Company — including a visit from Chuck Bob Svensson, the environmentalist logger — a silent auction of eclectic wild items, a raffle with very cool prizes — including new FSPW fleece hats and other FSPW swag — a no-host bar and complimentary light appetizers.”

The press release includes a statement from Phil Hough, FSPW Executive Director, who has been with the group from the first meeting in 2005.

“It’s not all been fun, but this is some of the most satisfying work I’ve ever done,” the release quotes Hough as saying. “Watching our support base grow exponentially over the years as well as our continued positive influence in so many communities surrounding the Scotchmans gives me great confidence that the Peaks will ultimately be a designated wilderness.”

FSPW advocates for Congressional designation of the recommended wilderness and have made “a big investment in outdoor education, trail stewardship, weed mitigation and habitat restoration in the Scotchmans,” according to the release.

Sponsors for the anniversary event include Kochava, The Sandpoint Reader, All About Weddings, Blue Creek Press in Heron, Larson’s Good Clothes, The Western News, Pend Oreille Arts Council and Eichardt’s Pub, Grill and Coffee House.

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