The Pennsylvania Parks and Forests Foundation, the only non-profit where the mission is Pennsylvania’s state parks and forests, welcomes the friends of Ole Bull State Park.

Located in the Kettle Creek Valley in Potter County, the park is surrounded by some of the largest tracks of forests land in the state.

Campgrounds, easy to medium hiking trails, playgrounds and a beach, make the park perfect for families.

Dedicated attendance to the annual volunteer weekend proved there was a need for a friends group to help organize and lead events.

The 46th group under the umbrella of the Pennsylvania Parks and Forests, the Friends of Ole Bull State Park will be chaired by Mary Hirst, who has been active at Ole Bull for over 20 years. Her plans for the group include continuing the Kids Fishing Derby, organizing volunteer weekends, and raising funds for projects that will benefit the park.

Currently due to restrictions surrounding COVID-19, events are on hold, but the board is working remotely on development.

Their wish list of projects include, installing an ice machine, firewood sales, and possibly purchasing washers and dryers for campers.

“I grew up in state parks, spent over 35 years working for the Bureau, and now get to move on to a new chapter as a volunteer and customer.

This friends group will allow us to provide a service to the park, and especially to the great folks who find this place special,” said Hirst.

“This beautiful park located in the Pennsylvania Wilds will benefit from the energy and enthusiasm of a friends group,” said Marci Mowery, president of the Pennsylvania Parks and Forests Foundation.

“Mary brings with her over 35 years of experience in state parks; we are thankful that she plans to continue her commitment to conservation in this volunteer capacity.”

Meetings will be at the discretion of the officers and board and will be at the park when possible. The group’s annual meeting will be held each April in conjunction with the volunteer weekend.