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We know there is a lot of uncertainty and upheaval in our world right now. We also know how much the parks in the Chesapeake Bay watershed mean to you and how they can be a place of discovery and comfort and hope for us all. We hope that our updated virtual Trips & Tips newsletters will help bring the parks to you while we all do our part to keep ourselves, our families, and communities healthy and well. Share your favorite virtual visits and follow us at @ChesapeakeNPS, #FindYourChesapeake. Sign up for Trips & Tips.
Sultana Education Foundation in Chestertown is offering public paddles for ages 12+ and for families. Paddlers ages 12+ will be guided by staff on a unique kayak excursion on the Chesapeake Trail. Most paddles take place on Maryland’s upper Eastern Shore, and each paddle features a unique theme. Kayaks and gear are provided so all you need is water, a snack, and your binoculars! Each paddle will be kept to 8 participants and social distancing guidelines will be followed. The cost is $30 per person and 2.5 hours long and available from now through the month of August, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:00 am-11:30 am. The family paddles (ages 3+) are $150 for groups of 9 or less with 3.0 hours of exploring, fishing, seining for critters, or just moseying down the river – it’s up to you. Families/groups can make arrangements for dates and times by contacting the Foundation directly. More information and registration.
Hoffler Creek Wildlife Preserve https://www.findyourchesapeake.com/places/hoffler-creek-wildife-preserve is offering two great guided paddles in August. The first, on August 15, winds through Hoffler Creek and then wraps up by catching the sunset over the Monitor-Merrimac Bridge Tunnel from the James River. If you’re an early bird, the paddle on August 23 offers the opportunity to tour Hoffler Creek in the early morning before the park is open to the public. Both paddles are $40 per person, with either tandem or single kayaks included and are suitable for beginning paddlers. More information and registration.
While the Virginia Cooperative Extension’s publication, Pest Management Guide: Home Grounds and Animals, is downloadable as a PDF and is also very thorough, it is daunting. That’s why you may prefer to join in the free online Zoom seminar, Managing Wildlife in the Urban Home Landscape, which will be presented by Kirsten Conrad, the Agricultural Natural Resource Extension Agent for Arlington County and City of Alexandria on August 14, 10:00 am to 11:30am. Kirsten will present an informative and entertaining look at ways to manage and control garden critters affecting your vegetables, fruits, ornamentals, and lawn. Register for Managing Wildlife in the Urban Home Landscape. If you can’t join the live online presentation, video recordings of this and other sessions are posted to the Master Gardener Virtual Classroom within two weeks.
The Perseids meteor shower is active from mid-July though late August, however the most exciting time is at its peak from August 11-13. Codorus State Park in Hanover, PA (45 miles northwest of Baltimore) is offering four guided paddles to view the meteor shower for paddlers ages 12+ who can bring their own boats. Learn how these fire storms in the sky occur. The paddles are August 7, 8, 14, and 15 at 8:30 pm. More information, and registration (required).
While Piscataway Park cannot share their site with you in the usual ways, they would like to invite you to enjoy some fun activities at their park while still keeping yourself and your family safe. The self-guided activities include a Nature Photo Scavenger Hunt, Bird Adventure Activity Guide, National Colonial Farm Scavenger Hunt, and for the fairyolgists in the family, the Fairy Trail Activity Guide. As an example the Bird Adventure Pack includes bird watching tips and tricks, bird ID guides, puzzles, games, and a coloring page. The guides can be downloaded online for $5 each and can be used at home as well as at the park. Download your adventures.