Penn Soil Resource Conservation and Development Council recently announced that it has produced and received the third souvenir commemorative coin in a collectible series to help support the cost of the annual Warren Winterfest event. The creation of the collectible coin series which began with the 2012 Winterfest event is a step toward making the Winterfest event a financially sustainable event, said Wes Ramsey, executive director of Penn Soil RC&D.
The 2014 Winterfest coin features a full-color minted and painted design featuring several elements of the Winterfest event, a polar bear warming itself by the fire while watching a man about to do the plunge, geocaching, artistic scenes of Chapman State Park, and a family group enjoying the new ice skating rink with various levels of success.
"It is a beautiful coin," said Ramsey, about the size of a 50-cent piece, and has a nice heavy feel to it. "This year's coin features full-color artistic and humorous scenes of Winterfest on both sides of the coin. Coin collectors and those who like artwork will really enjoy this collectible souvenir of the winterfest and it will help sustain the annual event. As an added bonus, and of interest to geocachers, the coin is trackable on geocaching.com using each coins unique tracking number."
Photo by Wes Ramsey
Future years' versions of the collectible coin may feature other aspects of the popular winter event.
Acting as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and financial agent for the Winterfest Committee, Penn Soil RC&D has agreed to assist the group with fundraising for the event and receive charitable contributions from interested parties.
Each year on the third weekend of January, Warren County, Pennsylvania, stages a three-day family-oriented festival - Winterfest. Located in northwestern Pennsylvania, Warren County is a Commonwealth tourist destination that caters to all outdoor recreationists who enjoy the surrounding 513,000-acre Allegheny National Forest. There is no admission fee and activities also are conducted without charge. Approximately 10,000 to 12,000 people attend this event on an annual basis.
Winterfest takes place at a single venue - Chapman State Park, located 14 miles east of Warren. The park, with a serene 68-acre lake, is managed by the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and is surrounded by the ANF, which encompasses four counties, all of which are part of Pennsylvania Wilds. Winterfest is purported to be the largest winter festival in the Pennsylvania Wilds.
The festival begins with Jim Lobdell Memorial Sled Dog Races on Friday, and the public has the opportunity to "Meet the Mushers." Dog sled racing continues through the 806-acre state park early Saturday, followed by active family events such as sled riding and tobogganing on a long sled hill, sleigh rides, ice-fishing contests, cross-country ski clinics and tours, geocaching, and ice-skating.
When the dogs have finished tugging and yelping on Saturday, the winter spotlight is on the "Polar Bear Plunge" in which approximately 100 brave and hearty souls generally participate. A Warren County water rescue team, using chain saws to cut the ice, prepares the way for the gaily-outfitted plungers while the shoreline is crammed with festival onlookers, cheering for their favorite person's icy shock to take place.
In addition to being quite a spectator event, this event also benefits the local chapter of the Salvation Army, as those who participate in the polar plunge, receive pledges of financial support from friends and families in the community.
As mentioned earlier, this event is free to attend for the public, however, it is not without cost to host and there is a dedicated group of volunteers who work together year around to plan and host this event. Acting as a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization and financial agent for the Winterfest Committee, Penn Soil RC&D has agreed to assist the group with fundraising for the event and receive charitable contributions from interested parties.
All three coins (2012, 2013, 2014) are available now and one will be given as a token of appreciation to anyone who makes a tax-deductible contribution to Penn Soil RC&D for the Winterfest in the amount of $10 or more. If you haven't started your collection yet, any individual making a tax deductible donation of $25 or more may receive all three coins to date in the series while they last. The coins may be reserved for pickup at the Warren Winterfest Event by mailing your donation to the Penn Soil RC&D office at 210 North Drive Suite E; Warren, PA. 16365. Please make the check payable to Penn Soil RC&D with the "winterfest donation" listed in the memo area on your check. If you would like your coin mailed to you, please add $5 to cover shipping & handling cost. As an alternative, you may make your donation and receive your coin in person at the Penn Soil RC&D office located at 210 North Drive; Suite E; Warren or Chapman State Park Office while the coin supply lasts. There are a limited number of current and past Winterfest coins available.
"The coin set would make a great Christmas gift to someone who enjoys great artwork or the Winterfest Event, and also supports a great local event," Ramsey said.
For further information, please contact Wes Ramsey at the Penn Soil RC&D office by telephone at 814-726-1441.