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Highland Wonders ~ Upcoming

Highland Wonders is a monthly education series featuring the natural history of the Okanogan Highlands and surrounding areas. Come and meet some new people and enjoy refreshments; leave with a better understanding of your watershed.

The indoor series runs on the First Friday of the month, from November through April (skipping December). The outdoor series is offered in spring through fall, and the schedule varies.

 Megafires       Things seem to be changing in the West – snowpack levels are lower than they used to be, and the snowpack melts earlier in spring. Fire seasons are longer and more severe. Megafires, wildfires over 100,000 acres, now occur more often, causing wide-ranging impact on homes, communities, and wildlands. These changes are expected to continue, and we need to increase the fire resiliency of our wildlands, while also completing defensible space work around homes and communities.
Prescribed Burning Photo credit Era of Megafires - North 40 productions


Era of Megafires is a 60-minute, multimedia program featuring Dr. Paul Hessburg (research scientist with U.S. Forest Service). Paul has conducted fire and landscape ecology research for more than 27 years. The Megafires program features fast-paced, topic-based talks interspersed with compelling video stories.
Hessburg’s work has been published extensively in leading scientific journals over the past 30 years, but recently he’s felt a tug to take his findings public. The impetus stems from how favorite forests near his home in Central Washington had been ravaged by large and atypical wildfires. One of those fires, The Carlton Complex Fire, became the biggest megafire (one larger than 100,000 acres) in state history when it burned 256,000 acres and destroyed 322 homes. A year later in 2015, his hometown of Wenatchee lost 30 upscale homes and several warehouses in the Sleepy Hollow Fire. The narrative draws from Hessburg’s research over recent decades, explores the use of several tools, and discusses the trade-off between wild and prescribed fire smoke.

Event at a Glance

When: Friday, April 6th, 2018, at 6:30 pm. 

5:00 pm: 🍴 Dinner benefiting the Community Cultural Center (CCC)
6:00 pm: ☕  Reception with tea, coffee, and desserts
6:30 pm: 👨 Presentation 

Cost: Presentation is free; dinner is $8 for CCC members and $9 for non-members; desserts by donation (benefit for the CCC). 

Where: Community Cultural Center of Tonasket, 411 S Western Ave

  • Baked boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • Roasted garlic/rosemary potatoes
  • Green beans
  • Salad
  • Garlic bread
Meal coordinated by Brian Sanderson

This educational event is coordinated by OHA, funded by community members, and hosted at the CCC.

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2018 Indoor Series at a Glance:

Did you miss the lichen presentation, or do you want a refresher?
Visit for video and info from the event. Or, subscribe to OHA’s Highland Wonders YouTube channel for video of this and other events (

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Questions? Contact OHA's Conservation Coordinator, Julie Ashmore: