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

Any week that includes a bike ride down to Ohiopyle is a good one - even if the day I did it was the ONE sunny day in the entire week. There is not a lot of trail traffic yet but a few warm sunny days is all it takes.

A warm sunny day next Friday is our hope - it's Give Local York Day and Marci and Amanda will be out first with a hike at Samuel S. Lewis State Park and then a paddle at Gifford Pinchot State Park. Of course, the idea is to raise money in one day-long extravaganza. Make your donation beginning at midnight on Friday; all donations have the potential for matches from the York County Community Foundation and are eligible for a few goodies from us, too. The Facebook page or our events calendar will keep you connected to the details.

It is a shame to have cut off this lovely masthead photograph by Pamela Miller shared to the Shikellamy State Park Facebook page. Check out the full view and bear in mind that, as she notes, it's a great place for a walk!

Pam Metzger
Membership Coordinator

News of Note

The major topic of conversation as we walk the dogs these days is an unsavory one - ticks! Friend Wendy has a beautiful curly-haired dog that just seems to be a tick magnet and it can't help but give one pause when you clean him off after a morning stroll and find so many of the little blood-suckers in his lovely fur. None of us wants to stop going outside - and I am not generally squeamish in the face of the insect world - but these little beasts are just pretty icky.

If you want information on what ticks are/do and how to contend with them, click the "tick card" available on our website - or drop me a line. I'll be happy to mail a card to you so you can tuck it into your pack or glove compartment.

I'm curious as to whether anyone has ever tried permethrin treated clothing? I am considering it for shoes and socks at least. Have you treated anything yourself or do you own manufactured/treated gear? Let me know. As I said, it's become a major topic of conversation!

At the other end of the insect spectrum (i.e., the "beloved" end), must be the firefly. I mentioned in the past that there is a synchronous firefly celebration each year in the Allegheny National Forest - a sight I would surely love to see. At the same time, a HUGE event of the same kind takes place in Great Smoky Mountains National Park - an event SO huge there is a lottery drawing for tickets. (We people do love to turn things into gigantic productions, don't we?) Failing your/my/our inability to secure tickets through the lottery, instead you might view "Elkmont Symphony," a gorgeous video from photographer Harun Mehmedinovic. Harun and his partner Gavin Heffernan jointly administer a website and project called Skyglow, devoted to examining and publicizing the effects of light pollution on nature. Follow that link to the fireflies - and prepare to lose the rest of Friday to Skyglow videos and photographs!

At Work and Play in the State Parks and Forests

Rounding out the month - with a lot of folks opting for post-Earth Day and spring clean-up events. Check out Codorus, Delaware Canal (pre-register please), Frances Slocum, Marsh Creek (Sunday), Nescopeck, Pine Grove Furnace, Prince Gallitzin, Raccoon Creek, Salt Springs, Whipple Dam and Yellow Creek (by kayak, pre-register please).
Tomorrow is the annual Woodsy Owl WorkDay at PARKER DAM STATE PARK. As if Woodsy isn't enough of a draw, I happen to know that this is one of those days when our award winners, Ron and Donna Hirt, are at the park "doing their thing." Come out and meet a couple of celebrities! Oh, and free camping too.

The Friends of Pinchot host their annual Wildflower Sale on Saturday at Conewago Day Use Area. Find the beauties you need to spruce up your own little corner of the world.

National Save the Frogs Day at RIDLEY CREEK STATE PARK is a Saturday program with a much longer reach. Do they eat ticks? Does anything but possums? The well-rounded fisherperson can tie their own flies. Learn how at OIL CREEK STATE PARK on Saturday; then follow up by putting your skills to work on Sunday. "More Information" below links to the Sunday class. Class size is limited each day.

The Friends of Kings Gap make accessing volunteer opportunities very simple with their events calendar that sets out what help they need for each event during the year. Additional marketing help is always appreciated;contact Chair Jen Brehm for more information.

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 so exciting! Interpretive panels at Hammonds Rocks in Michaux State Forest. I can't wait to see what they say!

Take Five for Trivia

Thanks to all you J.T. Rothrock fans out there. You knew last week that the good doctor was born in McVeytown, Mifflin County, on Route 22 southwest of Lewistown along the Juniata River. He walked those Mifflin County forests to combat ill health as a child - was he ahead of his time or a purely logical part of it? Whichever, feel free to close out Rothrock Memorial Week with a state forest walk of your own! (Why not do it today and reward yourself with one of Marci's go-to snacks. It's National Pretzel Day!)

We'll close out April with a salute to one particular native Pennsylvania firefly whose name is what?

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

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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