When you spend time talking to people you usually learn something. During my visit to Pembroke on May 18th for the Community Foundation Breakfast, I sat at the same table as a former nuclear scientist who had worked at Atomic Energy in Chalk River.
Fred Blackstein, I found out, is heavily involved in many community activities, and one in particular caught my attention. Fred is on the board of a relatively new attraction called the Shaw Woods Outdoor Education Centre. I was unfamiliar with it and started asking questions, which led to a decision to drive out for a visit.
Fred kindly acted as a tour guide.
Herb Shaw and sons, a forestry company located in Pembroke donated the land for the Centre. 150 acres of the site is all original forest. The property also features a variety of managed forests, plantations and websites.
An all volunteer group designed the site and had it built. Volunteers maintain the trails.
Schools throughout Renfrew County use the Outdoor Centre for educational programming.
I chose not to identify the students I spoke to for safety reasons.
Lyndey Mask, who I interviewed, is a certified teacher employed by Shaw Woods. She works in conjunction with the schools.
There is no cost to use the trails, however donations are gratefully accepted.
Shaw Woods Outdoor Education Centre is located on Bulger Road, off Highway 41, south of Pembroke.
More information at www.shawwoods.ca