Nature

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Williford, Pitt and Sylvan Springs Recreation areas now open seven days a week

Note: This is an updated story from Sept. 16, 2019. The Northwest Florida Water Management District has returned Williford Spring and Pitt/Sylvan Spring recreation sites to normal operating hours (7 days a week, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.). The boardwalk to the kayak/canoe launch at Williford have been repaired as well as the tube launch at Pitt/Sylvan Springs. The walking trails that connect Sylvan to Williford remain closed, but work is underway to clear those trails. Learn more about Williford...

Guided plant stroll at Topsail Hill Preserve State Park Jan. 20

Join Topsail Hill Preserve State Park and Master Gardener Bill Kuenstler on the third Monday of the month for a guided plant stroll. The event will be held on Mon., Jan. 20 from 9 – 11 a.m. Take a stroll through the park and the campground to explore the plants visible and to see what is in bloom. Please wear weather appropriate clothing and comfortable walking shoes as you’ll be walking on uneven terrain. This program is free with regular...

Guided first day hike at Grayton Beach State Park Jan. 1

Enjoy a First Day hike with ranger Jacob at Grayton Beach State Park on Jan. 1 at 9 a.m. The hike will travel through the pristine sand dune trail and you will learn about our rare wildlife and plants that inhabit this unique area of the Gulf Coast. Also discover the history behind this changing winter wonderland. It will be a New Year, so please bring appropriate cold weather attire and trail footwear. Meet and the pavilion by the beach...

First Day hike at Camp Helen State Park Jan. 1

Ring in the new year on Wednesday, Jan 1, 2010 from 10 – 11 a.m. with a hike through Camp Helen State Park. America’s state parks are promoting First Day hikes in all 50 states as a way to promote healthy lifestyles and year-round recreation. Join Ranger Clayton Iron-Wolf through the diverse ecosystems of Camp Helen that wind through oak canopies, mesic flatwoods and rolling dune landscapes. This will be an easy to moderate hike, so it’s great for the...

Learn about insects at St. Andrews State Park Dec. 18

Enjoy a lecture on who’s eating who at St. Andrews State Park on Wed., Dec. 18 from 2 – 3 p.m. Learn about some of our native creepy crawly insects from volunteer Judith Scott. Find out the different bugs that may be biting you and the ones you could bite if you had to. Meet at the visitor center. The park is located at 4607 State Park Lane, Panama City, Florida 32408 ::MAP:: Tel: (850) 233-5140 Admission Fee: $8.00 per...

Sea turtle program in Santa Rosa Beach Dec. 11

Join the Friends of South Walton Sea Turtles on Wednesday evening, December 11th, from 6:30 – 7:30 pm as President Beth Coppedge and the Education Committee bring you a fun evening of Turtle Talk. They will be unveiling their newly acquired Turtle Trunk Educational Program that they are taking into our Walton County Schools to educate children about the Sea Turtles that come to nest on South Walton Beaches. This will be a fun event for adults and kids alike....

Guided plant stroll at Topsail Hill Preserve State Park Dec. 16

Join Topsail Hill Preserve State Park and Master Gardener Bill Kuenstler on Monday, Dec. 16 from 9 – 11 a.m. for a guided plant stroll. Take a stroll through the park and the campground to explore the plants visible and to see what is in bloom. Please wear weather appropriate clothing and comfortable walking shoes as you’ll be walking on uneven terrain. This program is free with regular park admission. A $6.00 entry admission per vehicle into the park. Topsail...

Guided hike at Camp Helen State Park Dec. 26

Join the park ranger on the last Thursday of the month, Dec. 26 for a ranger-led trail hike from 10 – 11 a.m. Camp Helen is home to over 3 1/2 miles of trails that meander through nine different distinct natural communities. A park ranger will lead the group on different sections of the trail for approximately 45 minutes, sharing about the natural and cultural history of Camp Helen State Park. All ages and fitness levels are welcome. Plan to...

History tour at Camp Helen State Park Dec. 7

Enjoy a history tour of Camp Helen State Park from 10 – 11 a.m. on the first Saturday of the month. Park guests will have the opportunity to learn about how recreation has been a part of the park’s heritage for nearly 100 years. From the first hotel built along the bluffs overlooking Lake Powell in the 1920s, to Camp Helen’s hey-day between 1945 and 1987 as a recreation camp for employees of Avondale Textile Mills, our park has been...

DEP designates Falling Waters State Park as State geological site

Designated State Geological Sites showcase Florida’s geological history and resources TALLAHASSEE – Oct. 24, 2019, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection designated Falling Waters State Park as the newest State Geological Site. Designated State Geological Sites are areas the Florida Geological Survey has determined to be significant to the scientific study and public understanding of geological history in Florida. Designated Geological Sites also provide opportunities to experience and learn about a site’s geological features, its connection to the local ecosystem, and...