Forest Around Us
....There’s two summers and one
winter ahead of us—and that has to be good for logger’s
Sports. The axes will zero in on bulls-eyes, the power saws will be
tuned up to a fare thee well, and the log birlers will try to keep dry.
It’s the Provincial Industrial Sport of B.C., as proclaimed by
the government, and it’s the showplace of the heritage of our
....I keep hearing of our industry looking
for a better image for the public to view, and it makes me wonder. People
project a true image. The sailor is the image of his navy—not
a battleship. The movie star projects the image of film, not the picture—so
why wouldn’t the logger best project the image of his forests.
So come on you executives and public relations people—project
this man and you tell a big story of the forests. It’s a pretty
exciting story too. Camps, towns, and cities across Canada are arousing
to the idea that because the forests of our country mean so much to
us all—then it follows that the loggers of our forests can relate
very easily to the crowds that turn out to watch them perform the arts
of the forest.
....I really feel sorry for the executives
who manage our forests when they get burdened down with the problems
about them. Labor turnover, pollution, union-management negotiations,
exp-ort markets, taxation and a host of other knotty problems of the
forest industries (no pun intended!). Not that Logger’s sports
can solve any of the above worries, but I put it plain and simple that
Logger’s sports can give the people of our industry a pride they
could well use. And to have a pride in champion loggers and the contestants
that vie to break records is a very desirable thing for not only our
executives but for the mothers, fathers and people of our industry.
....The management, work force and people
of Woss Lake on Vancouver Island take a great pride in their
Loggers’ Sports Day
in early June. And well they should. To see the sports amphitheatre this
Canadian Forest Products camp has set up in the middle of a forest of
tall Firs and Hemlocks, is to see the result of a real pride of achievement
by a group of people dedicated to showing off their forest skills. Crowds
of over two thousand people come to this logging community from all over
Van-couver Island to cheer on their heroes. It’s the kind of family
fun day that pays results for all. Management gains by the support it
lends to the efforts. The work force gain by the knowledge they have given
outsiders a look at themselves and their surroundings. And the public
gain by being entertained in a forest around them.
....A tour of five of B.C.’s champion
loggers will visit the Ontario forests and communities in June. Like the
group that showed off its skills in Quebec last September, these men will
put on shows from Toronto to the Lakehead. With this form of encouragement
it is hoped that the newly formed Ontario Logger’s Sports Association
will gain in their knowledge of how to conduct the sport and the type
of competition they will face, when, in a few years east will meet west.
....Grande Prairie in Northern Alberta has
now formed their first Logger’s sports Day—so it can be now
Logger’s Sports has gone national.
....In the United States, as in B.C., loggers
have for years gathered in certain communities to compete, but the larger
centers there knew next to nothing of the sport—now, however,
the cities are coming alive to the roar of power saws and the flashing
of axes. San Diego was the scene of a most successful demonstration
of Log-ger’s Sports when Jube Wickheim took a group of loggers
to that city for ten weeks last fall and played before thousands of
people. Jube is now ready to open a show on the outskirts of Cleveland
with about ten loggers from Canada, the U.S. and Australia. A large
capacity grandstand has been built and the men of the woods will show
off their stuff to the city dwellers of the east. There will certainly
be further shows in large cities as the promoters know a crowd pleaser
when they see one.
....For certain this summer will see more
television time being devoted to the loggers and the press keep coming
for stories and pictures of the action. Interest has been shown in Finland
and it is hoped that a tour by our champions to that country’s
forest regions can be accomplished before too long. Tasmania will host
the World’s Chopping Competition at the end of December this year
and the funds are now being raised for a B.C.
British Columbia Lumberman,
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team of choppers to go to the games.
....So there, you executives of the forest
industry and public relations men—with your worried brows—you
say you are looking for a good public image of the forests. You feel
the forest industry is misunderstood. You can’t seem to get your
message over to the public. Why not try a very natural way? Why not
enlist your company’s support in something the public already
understands and likes about our forests. The contestants—your
loggers—stand ready at the gun al over this country—and
elsewhere to show that public—and our own industry, the most interesting
aspect of the forest industry—its people and their skills.
....Oh—and by the way—it may
be interesting to note that as you hire young forestry graduates from
the British Columbia Institute of Technology—or the University
of B.C.—these young men will have already been indoctrinated into
the art of Logger’s Sports. I was pleased to be able to attend
the first inter-collegiate Logger’s Sports Day held at the P.N.E.
grounds in Vancouver last month. There were contestants from six different
north western universities hosted by the Forest Club of B.C.I.T We were
very impressed with their effort, and time and experience will put this
classification of logger’s sports to a real crowd pleaser.
....So, again, you see gentlemen, the way
the Hemlock bounces. Right at your doorstep. You can give it encouragement
and backing and you will be the recipient of the thanks from your industry.
....Here’s a little quiz for forestry
exe-cutives, and friends, allies and suppliers of the forest industry.
....Does your company encourage and back
....Does your company allow time off for
legitimate Canadian Logger’s Sports Association members to compete
at authorized Logger’s Sports Days?
....Do you as an executive of this industry
attend Logger’s Sports and do you encourage your staff to do so?
....If the answers to the above are all
in the affirmative, you are “with it.” And the thanks of
many thousands in this industry are sent your way—If the answers
contain a negative you just don’t know what you and your company
are missing. Get away from the confines of that cement pillar you work
in and join the loggers—Try it—you’ll like it.
....Keep out of the bight,
|British Columbia Lumberman,