"Celebrating Wilderness," a week-long exhibit featuring work by 30 local artists, will be on display through Sept. 6 at the U.S. Forest Service's Wallowa Mountains Visitor Center. The exhibit opened Monday.

The public is invited to an artists' reception at the visitor center from 2 to 4 p.m. Friday to honor the artists and their work, and to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Eagle Cap Wilderness.

"The purpose of the art exhibit is to showcase local artists who have captured images inspired by the natural beauty of the area," visitor center manager Nancy Rudger said.

The Eagle Cap Wilderness, the largest wilderness area in Oregon, was originally designated as a Primitive Area in 1930 and as a wilderness in 1940. In 1964 it was formally designated under the Wilderness Act (Public Law 88-577) and established as part of the National Wilderness Preservation System.

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