In The Forest Of The Fireflies: An evening with Ibiyinka Alao, United Nations Arts Ambassador will be held on Thursday, February 1 at West Forest HS AND Friday, February 2 at East Forest HS ; doors open at 6:30 pm both evenings. The programs will feature the firefly painting, creative writing and performing arts of students in the Forest Area Schools.  In addition, Mr. Alao will display his artwork and present his newly released film, “My Fireflies” for both audiences to enjoy.

Mr. Alao will be a resident-artist for 2 days in the Forest Area School District. All the students in grades Pre-K through 12th will have an opportunity to participate in and create a firefly themed project during the day.

Mr. Alao is an artist, author, musician, filmmaker and the 2001 prize winner of the United Nations Art Contest and the 2016/17 Scholastic Author Award.  Originally from Nigeria, Mr. Alao now resides in the Philadelphia area.

This is a FREE event thanks to the following sponsors: J. Bowman Proper Trust, Forest Area Arts Council, Tionesta and Marienville Lions and the West and East Forest PTOs.

The Pennsylvania Firefly Festival celebrates the annual mating displays of over fifteen different species of firefly in the Allegheny National Forest area including the Synchronous firefly and the unique "Chinese Lantern" firefly along the Tionesta Creek.  The Annual PA Firefly Festival takes place on June 24, 2017 on the grounds of the Black Caddis Ranch B & B in Kellettville, just 15 miles east of Tionesta on Route 666. The address is 13558 Route 666, Tionesta, Pa 16353; call us at 814-230-2035.

Synchronous Fireflies

The Photinus carolinus, also known as the Synchronous Firefly, was discovered and confirmed to be in the Allegheny National Forest in the summer of 2012. A team of world-class Firefly scientists from Tennessee and Georgia came to Black Caddis Ranch for 10 days, and traveled throughout the ANF collecting specimens and studying the diversity of fireflies.

The P. carolinus is unique in that its flash patterns are in synchrony with each other, so they appear to be a string of Christmas lights hanging in the forest. Other witnesses have likened it to camera flash bulbs at a sporting event. The only other confirmed habitat in North America is in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee.

PAFF is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit public charity. Financial information is available here.

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