Elliotsville Plantation, Inc., is a 2017 SHIFT Award Official Selection. Its president, Lucas St. Clair, led a twelve-year effort to establish the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument in Maine. St. Clair brought a different style to the debate over a national park, meeting with locals over kitchen tables and on forest trails. He opened up 40,000 acres of Elliotsville Plantation to hunting and snowmobiling in 2013, endearing himself to local residents. St. Clair’s effort sought to redefine the relationship between access, rural economics and outdoor recreation. His work came to fruition in 2016 with the successful establishment of the Monument.
Introducing St. Clair will be Brad Mead, a fourth-generation Jackson Hole cattle rancher, attorney, and the founder and CEO of Wyoming Whiskey. As part of his introduction, Mead will tell the story of the Jackson Hole National Monument, a 221,000-acre parcel comprised of mostly national forest land that was designated—over strong local protest—by President Rockefeller in 1943.
Mead’s grandfather, former U.S. Senator and Wyoming Governor Clifford Hansen, was one of the strongest opponents of the designation. Over time, Hansen came to see the value of protecting the Jackson Hole valley, and became a proponent of what was eventually to become Grand Teton National Park as we know it today.
Following the presentations, Jackson Hole’s foodie event of the year, The People’s Banquet, will celebrate the local food system with a matchup of the valley’s finest chefs and best producers. The evening begins with locally sourced cocktails and hor d’ouevres, followed, at 6:30 p.m., by St. Clair’s presentation. The banquet begins at 8:00.