As if it isn’t Hot Enough-DNR Front Porch Heats Up With Fire Demonstration

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Cummings helps a participant gets suited up in fire gear.

 

Not all fire is “bad” fire, informed the demonstrators at the FIRE! How the DNR Uses Fire as a Tool, presentation on the Front Porch of the DNR building. Jeff Cummings a Naturalist at Ft. Harrison State Park told onlookers the benefits of prescribed fires. It was explained that controlled fires are used for many reasons a few being ecological restoration (which will be done to restore the plants on the front porch of the DNR building after the state fair), disease and insect control, and hazardous fuel reduction.

Participants lined up on the Front Porch of the DNR building to see who's fire started first.

After a demo on the equipment used for prescribed fires, participants lined up to set fire to eight natural resources testing which one would ignite the quickest. A match was taken to everything from wood to pine needles and an attempt at igniting fresh grass. Everyone at the demonstration walked away with a souvenir Smokey the Bear frisbee inscribed with the infamous phrase, but instead of saying, “Only you can prevent forest fires.” the motto has been appropriately updated to “Only you can prevent wildfires.”

-Krista

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