On Friday, the US Forest Service will hold a ribbon-cutting ceremony in the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center for a new exhibit featuring a black wolf. The event will occur in conjunction with the visitor center’s winter Fireside Lecture series.

The exhibit dedication will occur during the intermission between repeat lectures by Alaskan writer and photographer Nick Jans. He will autograph photos of the wolf and his books prior to and after the first lecture. The free lectures begin at 6:30 p.m. and repeat at 8:00 p.m. Doors open for this special event at 5:30 p.m.

The Juneau community and others contributed more than $40,000 to construct the new exhibit, a museum quality diorama designed by EDX of Seattle, and built by wildlife artist Brian Kadrmas, that will feature the wolf reclining on a rock outcropping, two interpretive panels, a bronze cast of the wolf’s paw-print, and his recorded howls.

Nick’s presentations will include a narrated slide show featuring the wolf, and short readings from Nick’s book, A Wolf Called Romeo. “The completion of this exhibit has been a long time coming,” says Jans. “Hard to believe it’s been more than seven years, but the important thing is that we’re here. We did all we could to make this exhibit the best it could be; and it will be a lasting part of Juneau’s history.”

Fireside Lectures are free. There is no elevator access due to construction and elevator replacement this winter. Guests need to use the outdoor ramp or stairs.