Last updated: July 24. 2013 2:04PM - 213 Views
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Portia Williams

PDT Staff Writer

The Shawnee Nature Club will hosts its 52nd Annual Covered Dish Dinner program and meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 20. Dinner will be at 6 p.m. The program and meeting will convene at 7 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church in Portsmouth.

Dr. Brian McCarthy, president of the Ohio Chapter of the American Chestnut Tree Foundation, and is a professor in the Department of Plant Biology at Ohio University, will be the guest speaker. McCarthy has constructed and implemented a restoration program to help to counteract the plight of the American chestnut tree.

According to Jodi Wright of the Shawnee Nature Club, McCarthy will provide further insight about the plight of the American chestnut tree and his plan to help the tree survive.

The American Chestnut Foundation, founded in 1983 by a group of scientists who considered the massive impact that the demise of the American chestnut tree, and its impact upon rural communities. The Ohio Chapter of the TACF was organized in 2004 and granted full chapter status as of 2005. The mission of the American chestnut organizations is to keep the trees alive for future generations.

TACF seeks to restore the American chestnut tree through scientific research and a carefully designed breeding program. A blight-resistant American chestnut tree is expected to be ready for planting within the next decade. The Ohio Chapter is currently beginning a program to find surviving chestnuts in Ohio forests. The chapter also endeavors to establish demonstration plantings, create breeding orchards and advancing various forms of restoration and reclamation research utilizing American chestnut.

In addition to the program and meeting, dinner will be served. Dinner attendees are expected to bring a covered dish for the dinner.

Wright said she is looking forward to the upcoming dinner and program.

““We usually have a good turnout for the annual dinner. There are usually 30 to 40 people for our regular meetings,”” Wright said.

Wright said they are anticipating at least 60 people for the event. “If you want to bring a covered dish for the dinner that’’s great, if not, come as you are,” Wright said.

Portia Williams may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 286 or portiawilliams@heartlandpublications.com

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