2010-07-22 / Entertainment

Cowans Gap Activities

The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Bureau of State Parks, and Cowans Gap State Park announces the following programs at Cowans Gap State Park:

DiscoverE: Parents, do you have a child age 9-12 years who loves learning about the past? There’s still time to sign up him/her for our Penn’s Adventurers DiscoverE camp, “History Happens.” This two-day camp will be held August 12 and 13, from 9:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Topics range from learning about the Civilian Conservation Corps to reading the signs of wildlife, and activities include hikes, creative writing, and a simulated archaeology dig. This program is free of charge. To register your child, please call the park office at 717-485-3948. Students must be registered no later than August 4 to attend.

July 28 – Senior Series: History Walk. Discover the rich history of Cowans Gap! We’ll look at the creation of a wind gap, explore the importance of this gap for early travel, and learn about the lives of the people who made Cowans Gap what it is today. Then, we’ll take a gentle stroll to see some of the historical features of the park. Meet at the Brightbill Interpretive Center at 9:00 a.m. This program is being presented especially for seniors, but all ages are welcome to attend.

Child’s Play: Bring your preschool-age children to the park for some fun and learning! Today’s theme is what lives in water. Activities for this program may include a story, craft, outdoor exploration, or other activity. Playtime can sometimes be messy, so be sure your children are dressed in play clothes and shoes, and have appropriate attire for the outdoors. Child’s Play will begin at the Brightbill Interpretive Center at 11:00 a.m.

July 29 – Gardening for Wildlife: Find out how to attract wildlife to your property in this family-friendly program. Discover the importance of using native plants in gardening and learn how to create habitats for a variety of animals. Meet at the Brightbill Interpretive Center at 9:00 a.m. to join in this program.

Family Backpack Adventure: Is your family looking for something to do this afternoon? Why not go on an adventure! Stop by the Brightbill Interpretive Center to pick up a themed, loaner backpack with activities and materials to spend a couple fun hours together in the outdoors. Themes may include butterflies, insects, birds, preschool activities, or others. This activity will be available from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.

July 30 – What Scat is That?: The signs animals leave behind can give us valuable clues: who’s been here, what they were doing, even what was for lunch! Come discover some of the many signs you may encounter at Cowans Gap or your own backyard. This program will be held at the amphitheater at 7:30 p.m.

July 31 – Bats in Culture: Many people are afraid of bats. American folktales tell us that bats will nest in your hair and suck your blood. But in China, bats are symbols of good luck. Explore the role of bats in various cultures around the world, and learn the truth about the bats that call Cowans Gap “home.” This program will begin at the bat boxes near the Amphitheater at 8:00 p.m. Bring a camp chair or blanket to sit on. Arrive early to sample some snacks made possible by bats!

August 1 - For the Birds: Stop by the display table near the beach house to learn what you can do to give birds a helping hand! This activity will be available from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Wildflower Wander: Take a stroll with the park naturalist to see some pretty posies! Learn why plants produce flowers, why flowers come in different colors, and how some of these plants have been used by humans. This walk begins at 5:30 p.m. at the amphitheater. Bring your camera to take picture memories along the way!

For more information, contact Beth Garner, Environmental education specialist, at 717-485-3948 or by email at NRCowansEEPrograms@ state.pa.us. An online calendar of events featuring upcoming programs can also be viewed by visiting www.visitPAparks.com.

Cowans Gap State Park programs are free of charge and open to the public.

Scheduled visitor hours for the Brightbill Interpretive Center this weekend are as follows: Thursday: 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.; Friday: 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.; Saturday: 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.; Sunday: 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Access for people with disabilities

If you need an accommodation to participate in park activities due to a disability, please contact the Pennsylvania Bureau of State Parks: 888-PA-PARKS (voice); 888- 537-7294 (TTY); 711 (AT&T Relay Service).

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