Our Mission: Inspire Stewardship of
Pennsylvania's State Parks and Forests

I hope that you have been able to take a few hours (minutes ... days ...) this week to get outside. Here in Confluence the air is so clear and dry and warm and wonderful that I can barely stand to be indoors at all. I had wrestled the air conditioner into the window last week when it was so hot and it's such a process with foam and props and blood, sweat and tears that I don't know that I want to wrestle it back out again.

The bike is calling, but not so much as for some. Sunday is the annual Mount Davis Challenge, a USA Cycling sanctioned bike race over Pennsylvania's high point. If you find yourself out here in Somerset County, it's quite a thrill to see the racers shoot past.

If you're craving something a little tamer, you might do the Great Allegheny Passage and wind up at Point State Park as these gentlemen did. Everyone will be excited for you!

Pam Metzger
Membership Coordinator

News of Note


Pennsylvania's 2019 Envirothon Team (from Carmichaels High in southwest corner of the Commonwealth Greene County) is heading to North Carolina this weekend for the national Envirothon competition at North Carolina State University. Find out more and how to wish them GOOD LUCK at this link from the PA Environmental Daily blog by David Hess. GO TEAM!)

This week we launched a new Facebook group called Exploring PA Parks and Forests. The goal is to make it a go-to for sharing photos and commentary for favorite places to go and activities to do. There are already some beautiful pictures like this one of Colonel Denning State Park from Douglas Clifford, the 2017 Critics' Choice winner as Best in Show. Speaking of which there are only about six weeks left to get your entries in the 2019 photo contest!

Marci will be at Colonel Denning tomorrow for their volunteer day with 20th anniversary stickers for all volunteers ...  and maybe even some cupcakes!

In recognition of World Ranger Day (July 31), on Tuesday we'll be releasing a children's activity book. Check the website then for your copy!

Help Wanted

At Work and Play in the State Parks and Forests


If this weather holds, there's no reason not to get out and enjoy at least one of these great events. Please note: registration closes for the Friends of Mount Pisgah's 8/3 Women in the Wilds event on MONDAY, July 29.


If you know (as I do) someone who likes trains and history,then the Trains and History Saturday at KINZUA BRIDGE STATE PARK is a must do. Click below for More Information.

Did you register for the Friends of Lyman Run's Dutch Oven Dinner? We hope so as it takes place Saturday evening! If you missed it, keep an eye on our calendar for a repeat.

Yes, the Friends of Colonel Denning will be out "doing what needs to be done" on Saturday morning. It can only be done with your help!

Saturday is Worlds End Day with lots of free activities and interesting programs at WORLDS END STATE PARK. Go out and get acquainted with this beautiful park (and the Friends of Worlds End.) This is not a trivia question, but didja know that before there was a PYMATUNING STATE PARK there were rich abundant soils famous for ... onions? Celebrate this fact with the Friends of Pymatuning's first annual Onion Festival!

The Friends of Caledonia have suffered some losses recently with health challenges for a few board members and the sudden passing of their devoted treasurer, Doug Woy. They are definitely in rebuilding mode and would greatly appreciate hearing from some new hands. Get in touch with Marci if you are drawn to this historic gem.

These and other fun events and fulfilling volunteer opportunities can be found on the PPFF events calendar and DCNR Calendar of Events. Bookmark them and you'll never miss the boat (or hike or festival).

Picture of the Week


This is another "not this week" POW - taken back in June at Raccoon Creek State Park but I just stumbled upon it this week. A native blue crayfish ((Cambarus monongalensis) photographed by Lee Rishel. Native blue burrowing crayfish. Quite amazing!

Take Five for Trivia


Last week I asked what rank "Colonel" Denning held. It might be a trick question as suggested by a few people but only because we're not entirely sure but we think he was a sergeant in the Continental Army. Although regular trivia whiz Steven pointed out that "Colonel" has been used as an honorific in the past rather than an actual military rank, so William Denning must have been held in high esteem. His story is an interesting one, however we may choose to recognize him.

For our final July quiz, how many native and invasive species of crayfish can be found in Pennsylvania?

Send in your answer and we'll enter your correct response into our monthly prize drawing. All correct answers each week will go into the hat and at the end of the month we'll draw one lucky winner. The more correct answers you submit in a month (up to four or the occasional five depending on the month), the more chances you'll have to win.

In Closing


That seems like it might be enough blueberries. Five more days to enjoy National Blueberry Month - and you never know where you might find some.

Pennsylvania Parks & Forests Foundation (PPFF) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization - contributions to which are tax deductible to the fullest extent permitted by law. The official registration and financial information of PPFF may be obtained from the Pennsylvania Department of State by calling, toll-free within Pennsylvania, to 800.732.0999. Registration does not imply endorsement.

Pennsylvania Parks & Forests Foundation (PPFF) is a proud member of Earth Share and 1% for the Planet and is a Gold GuideStar participant.

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