2010-08-12 / Family

Cowans Gap Activities

The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Bureau of State Parks, and Cowans Gap State Park would like to announce the following upcoming public programs at Cowans Gap State Park:

August 18 - Woodland Critters Hike. Learn about animals you may come across as you explore the park’s trails in this moderate hike. Sturdy shoes are recommended for this activity. Meet at the amphitheater at 9:00 a.m. to come along!

Child’s Play: Bring your preschool-age children to the park for some fun and learning! Today’s theme is using the senses. Activities for this program may include a story, craft, and outdoor exploration. 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.

August 19: Senior Series: 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 9:00 a.m. at the amphitheater. Bring your camera to take picture memories along the way! This program is being presented especially for seniors, but all ages are welcome.

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, trees or others. This activity will be available from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.

August 21 - Photo Scavenger Hunt: Have some fun with this environmentallyfriendly scavenger hunt! First, pick up a page of clues at the Brightbill Interpretive Center. Then use these clues to find the objects, but rather than gather them, simply snap a digital photo of each thing on the list. Once you’ve found them all, return to the center and receive a prize! Some cameras may be available to borrow, or bring your own. The hunt begins at 3:00 p.m.

Mrs. Cowan Story: Come to the amphitheater to hear the story of Mrs. Mary Mueller Cowan, one of the original settlers of the land that is now Cowans Gap State Park. “Mrs. Cowan” will share the story of her childhood growing up in Revolutionary era Boston, her marriage to a soldier, and their lives together on the newly settled frontier. This program begins at 7:00 p.m. and is suitable for all ages.

August 22 - Skull Scatters: Stop by the display table near the beach house to check out some animal skulls! Can you identify them all? Test your skills and learn how teeth can tell you what an animal eats. This display will be available from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Capture the Butterfly: Come out and join us for a butterfly photography session at the park’s wildlife garden. Get some tips on photographing butterflies, and then try your hand at it. Exchange tips with other butterfly photographers. Use your own camera or borrow one of the park’s cameras.

Participants that borrow a park camera will be able to take their pictures with them on a disk. Bring water and a little patience and you might just capture the butterfly! Meet at the amphitheater at 3:00 p.m.

Intro to Using GPS: Learn the basics of using a handheld GPS! We’ll practice our newfound skills with a simple geocaching activity. GPS units will be provided. This family-friendly program begins at the amphitheater at 5:30 p.m.

Moonlight Kayak: Come enjoy the nightlife as we paddle on Cowans Gap Lake. Who knows what we will see or what creatures we will meet! Bring your own kayak or borrow one of ours: A few single-person kayaks will be available to borrow but must be reserved in advance by calling Beth Garner at 717- 485-9018. Participants must be at least 12 years old, and anyone under 18 years old has to be accompanied by an adult. Life jackets are required for this program. Meet at the boat launch parking lot at 7:00 p.m.

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 the DCNR State Parks at 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 – 1:00-3:00 p.m.; Saturday - 3:00-6:00 p.m.; Sunday – 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

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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