Dine with an explorer

Dinner and lecture at the Columns: Anthropologist Bill Thomas will talk about wisdom of indigenous people in conserving the globe's wildest lands


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  • Bill Thomas and friend in Papua New Guinea (Photo provided)



MILFORD — The Pike County Historical Society is hosting a dinner and a lecture with anthropologist Bill Thomas at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 20, at the Columns Museum, 608 Broad St., Milford.

Dr. Thomas earned a Ph.D. in anthropology from Arizona State University and is currently the director of the New Jersey School of Conservation at Montclair State University.

Since 1988, with funding from the National Geographic Society, Conservation International, the Indo-Pacific Conservation Alliance, the Explorers Club and the Porgera Joint Venture, he has worked in some of the most remote regions of Papua New Guinea to record local environmental knowledge. In 2005, during an expedition sponsored by the Porgera Joint Venture to New Guinea’s Central Range — the largest, least explored wilderness on this island — he was part of an international team of scientists and local naturalists that discovered 50 new species.

Thomas is particularly interested in the potential for indigenous knowledge to provide a blueprint for the conservation of the earth’s remaining wild lands. He created the Papuan Forest Stewards initiative as a prototype for landowner-driven conservation and is now working with the Hewa people to create a national park at the Headwaters of the Strickland River and the Wage, Enga, and Ipili communities in Enga province to conserve the Kaijende Highlands. He is a fellow in the Explorers Club and a recipient of the Lowell Thomas Award for his exploration in New Guinea.

Tickets to the event are $40 and include a ham and sweet potato dinner, dessert, and coffee. Make a reservation by calling 570-296-8126 or emailing pikemuse@ptd.net.

The $40 admission fee includes a ham and sweet potato dinner, dessert, and coffee.

The snow date is Jan. 27.

For more information call 570-296-8126.

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