Lots to do this summer at York County parks

York County Parks and RecreationThe York County Department of Parks and Recreation has announced upcoming summer events for children and families. For information about other programs, visit www.yorkcountyparks.org.

– Bat program, from 2:30-4 p.m. Sunday, July 14, at Nixon County Park, 5922 Nixon Drive, Springfield Township. The program is suitable for people over the age 10 and will consist of an indoor slide presentation and talk with props to explain the unique nature of this often misunderstood group of flying mammals. Biology and ecological role played by bats in Pennsylvania will be discussed. Information: (717) 428-1961.

– Family Campout Night, 7 p.m. Friday, June 21-9:30 a.m. Saturday, June 22, at Nixon County Park. Enjoy campfire stories, before unrolling your sleeping bags for a snooze under the stars, or in a tent. A snack and breakfast are included. In the case of rain, activities will be moved inside the nature center. Cost is $8 per camper for non-members and $6 per camper for park members. Registration is required: (717) 428-1961 or nixoncountypark@yorkcountypa.gov.

– Family Rambles, informal hikes, 6:30-7:30 p.m. Wednesdays, June 19, July 10 and 24 and Aug. 7 and 21 at Rocky Ridge County Park, Oak Timbers parking area. This program is meant to “leave no child inside,” as recent research finds that children who get outdoors are happier, healthier and become more engaged in education. Each child must be able to walk for 60 minutes, and must be accompanied by an adult. Free, no registration required. Information: (717) 428-1961.

Read More

Natural egg dipping program at Nixon Park

York County Parks and RecreationThe York County Department of Parks and Recreation will host a special Natural Egg Dipping program from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Friday, March 29, at Richard M. Nixon County Park.

Join Parks volunteer Amy Slagel to learn and enjoy the art of dyeing Easter eggs naturally using onion skins, blueberries, and coffee — just to mention a few possibilities. Bring your own hard-boiled eggs and wear old clothes.

Fee is $2 per person, and registration is required.

For more information or to register, call Nixon County Park at (717) 428-1961. Note: The Nature Center will only be open from 8:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. on the day of this event due to the Good Friday holiday.

Read More

Spring fever walk at Nixon Park

York County Parks and RecreationJoin York County Parks Naturalist Kelsey Frey for a spring fever walk, 2:30-4 p.m. Sunday, March 17, at Richard M. Nixon County Park.

Stroll along the streams and forest looking for signs of animals and plants stirring after long winter naps. Check out the new plant growth and celebrate the melting snow, increased sunlight and warmer temperatures.

There is no fee for the program and registration is not required. For more information, call (717) 428-1961.

Read More

Discover the mystery of Raab Park

York County Parks and RecreationThe York County Department of Parks and Recreation is sponsoring a History and Mystery of Raab County Park hike from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, March 23.

Participants will tour the 19th-century York Iron Co. Mine. Along the tour, discover how miners extracted the rich iron ore out of the ground and transported the ore to area furnaces. Learn about the miner’s life during the 1800s. Also, see how the York County Parks has installed bat doors over the shafts to protect the bat population.

Participants should wear sturdy hiking shoes and dress for the weather. Because of hibernating bats, participants will not go inside a mine. The walk is about two miles in length with some steep terrain.

The program is free, but registration is required. For more information or to register, call (717) 428-1961.

Read More

Maple Sugar Fest this weekend at Nixon Park

York County Parks and RecreationThe York County Department of Parks and Recreation will host a Maple Sugar Fest, 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 23, and noon-4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 24, at Richard M. Nixon County Park Nature Center.

Join Parks staff for ongoing tours through various stations to learn the history and methods of maple sugaring, the natural history of the sugar bush and enjoy sampling maple syrup.

Tours will include hands-on demonstrations and begin every hour from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. on Saturday, and from noon until 3 p.m. on Sunday. Sugar Bush Storytimes will also take place for children at 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. on Feb. 23.

The story times are free with no pre-registration required. Visitors can partake in other activities and crafts throughout the Nature Center and buy products from Pennsylvania maple syrup producers.

Admission is $2 per person for the entire weekend and free for park members and children ages 5 and younger.

For more information or for groups of 10 or more, call 428-1961.

For more information on Parks programs, visit www.yorkcountyparks.org.

Read More

Join the reptile invasion at Nixon County Park

Reptiles will invade the Nixon County Park Nature Center from June 30 to July 8, thanks to the York County Department of Parks and Recreation.

Scheduled programs include:

– Critter Caravans Show, 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Saturday, June 30 and July 7 (no registration), and 6:30 p.m. July 5 (registration required).

– Turtle Trek, 2:30-4 p.m. July 1. Registration required.

– Fox Story Time, “Scales and Tails,” 9:30-11:30 a.m. July 3. For ages 4-7 with a parent. Fee: $5, registration required.

– Feeding Time, 1-2 p.m. July 3 and 5. Registration required.

– Searching for herps on the move, 2:30 p.m. July 8. No registration.

Nixon County Park is located at 5922 Nixon Drive, Springfield Township. The Nature Center is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, and noon to 4:30 p.m. Sundays. It will be open during regular hours on July 4.

To register or for more information, call (717) 428-1961.

Read More

Flag Day celebration at Hanover Junction

The Friends of the Heritage Rail Trail and York County Parks will present a Flag Day celebration, 7 p.m. Thursday, June 14, at historic Hanover Junction Train Station, 2433 Seven Valleys Road, Seven Valleys.

The program will consist of a special flag-raising with New Freedom Boy Scout Troop 24 and bugler Ivan Frantz, special readings, stories and a sing-along. The program is free with no registration required.

For more information, call York County Parks at (717) 840-7440.

Read More

Turn your backyard into a haven for kids

The York County Department of Parks and Recreation will present a Nature Fun at Home program, 2:30-4 p.m. Sunday, April 29, at Richard M. Nixon County Park.

Parks naturalist Amber Carothers will show participants how to turn backyards into an outdoor haven for kids of all ages. During the program, participants will learn an inexpensive way to create a nature playscape at home. The program is free with no registration required.

For information on this and other programs, go to www.yorkcountyparks.org.

Read More

In search of salamanders at Nixon County Park

The York County Department of Parks and Recreation will present a Salamander Stroll, 1 and 3 p.m. Sunday, April 15, at Richard M. Nixon County Park.

Naturalist and amphibian expert Gretchen Young will lead this indoor and outdoor experience. Participants will learn about the interesting lives of local amphibians and also have a chance to go outside and look at these fascinating critters. Participants will look for frog and toad eggs, adult frogs and toads and native salamanders, and listen for mating calls.

Participants should dress for the weather. There is no fee but registration is required. For more information and to register, please contact Nixon County Park at (717) 428-1961.

Read More

Cabin fever hikes in February

The York County Department of Parks and Recreation is offering the Cabin Fever Hike series from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. on scheduled Saturdays this winter. All hikes are at Rocky Ridge County Park and will start in the Hidden Laurel Picnic Area. Guides will cover different topics each week.

For Feb. 4, naturalist Amber Carothers will guide attendees along the trail while investigating what animals are doing during the winter. Afterwards, participants will enjoy a fire and hot chocolate in an enclosed pavilion. Meet at Pleasant Pavilion.

On Feb. 11, science teacher Jeff Miller will lead the Winter Scavenger Hike. Participants can find out who has been visiting the park during the winter and what is happening in the woods. Prizes will be awarded. Meet at Ruffed Grouse Pavilion.

Directions and a map of the park are available at www.yorkcountyparks.org. Rocky Ridge is split between Hellam and Springettsbury townships.

All hikes are free but registration is required. To register or for more information, call Nixon County Park at (717) 428-1961.

Read More