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DNR Activities to Celebrate Earth Day This Weekend
Indiana Ag Connection - 04/17/2018

Earth Day is April 22 in Indiana, but why limit your observance to one day? The DNR will offer the following activities on both Saturday and Sunday, as listed below, as well as a bonus in early May.

April 21

- Chain O'Lakes State Park will have a Spring Scavenger Hunt from noon to 4 p.m. for children or adults to learn more about nature in the spring, or expand their nature observation skills. Pick up your scavenger-hunt card inside the historic Stanley Schoolhouse between noon and 3:30 p.m., and come and go as you please. Final prizes will be given out at 4 p.m.

- Indiana Dunes State Park interpretive naturalists will offer their expertise at a booth at the Northwest Indiana Earth Day Celebration at the Porter County Expo Center.

- Spring Mill State Park's observance runs from 10 a.m. to noon at the Lakeview Activity Center. A lot of take-home crafts and projects will be available to work on with volunteers and partners. Projects include suet feeders, birdhouse gourds, an Arts in the Park jewelry demonstration, and other arts and crafts. DNR Fish & Wildlife staff will be on site helping people fish and offering fishing poles to borrow and bait to use on what also is the first of Indiana's four Free Fishing Days this year.

- In Richmond, there will be a DNR Go FishIN Backyard Bass casting station at the Hayes Arboretum as part of that Earth Day Celebration from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. DNR personnel will host a Hook a Kid on Fishing event just down the road at Glen Miller Park from 2 to 4 p.m. Fishing poles and bait will be provided.

April 22

- Versailles State Park calls on volunteers, including kayakers, canoers and walkers who use the park, for a cleanup and lake sweep from 1 to 4 p.m. Property staff will coordinate. Individuals with a kayak or canoe are encouraged to bring it and a personal flotation device to participate in the lake sweep. Those who want to participate in the lake sweep but don't own their own equipment can borrow from a limited park supply, first come, first served. Volunteers are also needed to walk and collect trash from the grounds. Trash grabbers and bags will be provided. Activities will be coordinated from the pool parking lot.

- Indiana Dunes State Park hosts a bubble art program from 1 to 3 p.m. to celebrate the Earth's colorful beauty. Bubble artist Mike Bever will demonstrate his artistic creations using colored bubbles made from items that often end up as litter. Participants will be invited to create their own bubble art by making an Earth Day postcard. This program is made possible through a grant from the Indiana Arts Commission.

- Turkey Run State Park will offer the chance to create a take-home planter and get a native plant (while supplies last), as well as learn about what pollinators your plant will attract. Stop by the Turkey Run Nature Center anytime between 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

- Look for the DNR Urban Wildlife Booth at Earth Day Fort Wayne from 1 to 5 p.m. at Little River Wetland Project's event on Engle Road. For more information, visit https://www.visitfortwayne.com/event/earth-day-fort-wayne/20701/.

- Patoka Lake's Earth Day Celebration runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Bring your unwanted or excess garden and plant seeds, tree seedlings, flowering plants and bulbs to exchange for something new. Volunteers will provide wild native plants for guests to take home during the swap. Also, join Anabel Hopkins, Arts in the Parks artist, for a special workshop to create "critters" using natural objects and other items.

-Clifty Falls State Park will offer a Build a Bluebird House workshop at 10 a.m. The event is limited to 15 people, and there is a $10 per person fee. Register at 812-273-0609. At 1 p.m., the nature center will offer a program about leafcutter bees, which don't need hives. Discover how you can help them during this one-hour program.

If one weekend is not enough, on May 5, at Starve-Hollow State Recreation Area, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., you can go to the Forest Education Center to join in a clean-up and help with landscaping with native plants.

Gate fees may apply at all state park properties.

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