Start Date Set For “Tales of Ossipee Lake” Series

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Freedom — June 24, 2003 — Ossipee Lake Alliance will kick off its “Tales of Ossipee Lake” speaker series at 4 PM on July 12th with a presentation at Green Mountain Conservation Group’s 5th annual Watershed Weekend event on the amazing world of Ossipee Lake Natural Area, the formal name for the 400 acres of land at the southern end of the lake that is commonly called Long Sands.

New Hampshire’s finest surviving example of a sandy pondshore community, a rare and endangered wetlands habitat, Ossipee Lake Natural Area contains the largest known collection of rare plants among such ecosystems and has a combination of rare plants that exists nowhere else in the world, according to biologists who have studied the area extensively.

Privately held until the 1960s the land was purchased by the state to ensure its protection as a unique environmental asset and is overseen by the New Hampshire Natural Heritage Inventory, a program mandated by the state’s Native Plant Protection Act of 1987 to establish protective measures for native plant species. Speakers at the event will include Lionel Chute and Dan Sperduto, senior ecologists with Natural Heritage Inventory program.

Prior to the presentation, which will take place at Calumet Conference Center in Freedom, there will be narrated pontoon boat trips to the pondshore area every hour starting at 1 PM. There is no charge for the boat trips or the presentation. A suggested donation of $15 for adults and $7.50 for students will include a cookout dinner and entertainment following the presentation as part of the Watershed Weekend festivities.

The Tales of Ossipee Lake series will feature events this year and next on the human and natural history of Ossipee Lake, which is known for its scenic beauty, for its quality of recreation, and for having one of the largest numbers of unique environmental habitats of any lake in the state. Other events in the series will be announced later in the summer.

For information on the series phone the Green Mountain Conservation Group at 539-1859 or check the Ossipee Lake Alliance website at www.ossipeelake.org.

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