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IFG's Bear Fair coming out of hibernation

by EMILY BONSANT
Hagadone News Network | September 25, 2023 1:00 AM

BONNERS FERRY — The first Boundary County Bear Fair is coming out of hibernation on Saturday, Sept. 30.

A Bear Fair is planned for Sept. 30 at the Boundary County Fairgrounds, in part to inform visitors of local resources and a day of fun.

The event is the brainchild of Austin Terrell, project manager of Terrestrial Species from the Governor’s Office of Species Conservation, and Rob Morris of the Idaho Department of Fish and Game.

“The resources available to North Idaho residents from the many local partners has grown immensely over the last year and we wanted to be able to spread the word about those resources, therefore the idea of the Bear Fair came about,” Terrell said.

Bear spray training will be provided, including the new radio-controlled charging grizzly bear, which demonstrates how fast bears can run.

Other events and information include an electric fencing workshop to help protect livestock, cider pressing, livestock carcass pick-up program information, learning about camping in bear country, huckleberry information, and much more.

The fair is partially modeled after the Troy Apple Festival held annually in Troy, Mont.

“IDFG recently purchased a new cider press and we wanted to be able to emphasize the importance of gleaning fruit off fruit trees so that it is not an attractant for bears,” he said.

Those interested in making cider, should bring their own apples and containers to make fresh apple cider using the press as they learn the importance of picking up fruit.

Free hot dogs and hamburgers will also be available.

Organizers said they hope to make the fair an annual event, but are waiting to see how attendance goes before committing.

“If all goes well this year, we hope to add onto the event and grow it going forward,” Terrell said.

The Bear Fair will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Boundary County Fairgrounds.

photo

(Photo courtesy IDAHO DEPARTMENT OF FISH & GAME)

This past year saw an increase in the number of grizzly bear and livestock interactions across the region.