Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Spring Break Trips...the weather held and we saw a lot

So the winter weather held on late into the season here in the Piedmont of NC.  We had to cancel the last day of Spring Break trips due to the weather...yes it was around 40F and around lunch came a great mix of rain and sleet.  Not great for canoeing a river.  But the other days were sunny and we made the most of it. 

Day one we paddled at Lake Michie.  Such a beautiful place with so many different features to see.  Below are some pictures from that day.








 
 
 
We paddled up to where the Flat River enters Lake Michie then we hiked up along the shore, passing rapids, cliffs, and ending up in a Bamboo forest.  This Bamboo is old and nothing else grows in that area so you feel like you could see a Panda come strolling through.  On our way back we paddled up a side creek by Spruce Pine Lodge and walked up the creek to some waterfalls.  It's like you are in the mountains, but you are only 25 minutes from downtown Durham.  Such a neat place northern Durham County.  I love it.
 
Day two we went for a hike in Hill Forest, which is NCSU's teaching forest for their Natural Resources Department.  Students come out there to get hands on experience in natural resource management, forestry, and wildlife management.  Many thanks to Joe Cox for allowing us to use the forest for our hike.  We explored and hiked and found lots of neat things, such as...
 
 
 
 
 



 




















Cross the icey river challenge
So as you can see we found lots of animals, lots of beautiful spots, and of course fun things to do.  Once again all this is in wonderful Durham County.

Our last day was another canoe trip.  Due to water level and water temperature we chose to paddle from West Point on the Eno down to Penny's Bend.  The water level was perfect as we didn't have to do much work and the weather was pretty ideal, the calm before the storm I guess.  Here are some pics from this day.



Along the way we saw two beaver dams on side creeks, wildflowers, poison ivy, lots of birds, and we developed a fun new game called, Skunkape in the Forest, that will be getting played during Eno Discovery Summer Camp.  Fun, fun.  That's all for now.  More post soon to come.  As always check out our Instagram site, button near the top on the right of the page.  And we hope to see you out soon.



Tuesday, April 30, 2013

West Point Intersession Camp week was awesome !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yes that is right.  We had an awesome week of camp at West Point.  Still playing a little catch up with the blog, but that is alright.

From salamanders to magic crystals, we found all sorts of neat things out in the forest.  Exploration, exploration, exploration was the name of the game.  While the ticks were still sleeping and the poison ivy was not out we took advantage and spent a lot of time off trail with the kids.  We explored wetlands, old trash piles (treasures), springs, creeks, and animal trails.  Below are some pictures of what we saw and did.

Game time...Sock Wars!

 

Kids love pushing large rocks around
 

Found items during the day





Feeding Station
Kid's punishing counselor for making them push large rocks around for no reason




 
 

We've returned from the forest...time to reconnect with technology

Hey Everyone,
So we have been out of the office  running camps and trips and now we are trying to get ourselves back online.  Let me say that we had a great time during the intersession camps and trips despite the late season winter temperatures.  Now that we are back to the office it is 70 degrees and beautiful outside, what can you do?

So just a quick update on the things that you have missed, Intersession Camp at Northgate Park.  Here is a pic.

 

So we hiked in Ellerbee Creek, found treasures in the creek, played in the woods, found mysterious creatures in the forest, played games, and we can all say that we have explored Ellerbee Creek from where it flows under Roxboro Road all the way upstream to where it flows under Duke Street.  Lot of fun and lots of neat natural features to see.

Here are a couple more pictures from our Northgate Park week of Intersession. 























This was our first week of fun in the woods.  Stay tuned for a recap of our Intersession week at West Point on the Eno. 

Also don't forget that you can follow us on Instagram, we don't disappear from Instagram, it is a great place to see what we have been up to.
Click the link on the upper right side of the blog to see what we are finding out in the woods.





Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Eno Discovery Summer Camp Registration, Durham NC

Yes it is that time of year when you gotta start planning your children's summer activities. 

Registration for Eno Discovery Summer Camp start on March 16.  You can either register online at https://online.activenetwork.com/dprplaymore/Start/Start.asp  or you can register at West Point on March 16, between 9am - 1pm. 
The best plan would be to register online if you can, go to the site now and search it so you can find all the camps that you are interested in.  First you will click browse, then click the Camp link on the left, once there you will have to scroll through to find the Eno Discovery camp sessions.  If you take note of the barcode of the camp weeks you are interested in, when you go to register on Saturday, March 16 you will be able to go right to the camps instead of having to scroll around.
If you have not registered online before, go ahead and set yourself up with a log-in, it will take 24-48 hours to complete the process.  So you want to take care of that by Wednesday, March 13 to make sure you have time.

Below are the basics about the camp, one thing to know is the fee is $132 for city residents and $157 for non-city.  The other fees reflect the discount you get if you have a Playmore Card.  A Playmore card cost $25 per family (city residents) and you receive discounts on all DPR programs.  You cannot by a Playmore Card online.  You must purchase the card at a recreation center or the main parks and recreation office.

Eno Discovery is a full day camp, Monday - Friday,  8:30am-5pm at West Point on the Eno City Park.
This camp focuses on age appropriate learning and exploration of the Eno River and the surrounding landscape. The children will discover the world of plants, insects, and animals in and around the Eno River. This camp is mostly outdoors and has limited indoor time.  All campers need to dress to get dirty and wet.  Campers also need to bring a snack, lunch, and drinks for the day.  We provide one snack a day and you provide the other. 

Cost is $120(CRPC),  $132(CRNPC), $141.50(NCRPC), $157(NCRNPC) per week . Camp meets at the EE Center at West Point on the Eno.

The schedule:

Ages 6-8: June 17-21, July 1-5, July 15-19, July 29-August 2         Space limited to 20 campers per week.

Ages 9-12: June 24-28, July 8-July 12, July 22-26, August 5-9       Space limited to 15 campers per week.

No Camp: July 4
 
Registration starts on Saturday, March 16 from 9am-1pm at West Point on the Eno or online. 
Registration will continue March 18 until camp is full at the Parks and Recreation office, any recreation center, or online.

For more information about this camp , please call 919-560-4405 (ext 6) or you can email me at christopher.shepard@durhamnc.gov 



Some pictures from past years.





 
 



 

Friday, February 22, 2013

Wet cold weather = cancelled programs

Oh well, we can always use the rain, but does it have to be cold and rainy when we are trying to do our outdoor programs?

Our Lake Michie Moonlight Paddle and our first Teens in Nature program of the season have both been cancelled due to the weather.  Sad but true.  My first instinct is to run the programs no matter the weather, but then I am reminded that not everyone wants to come out in the wet chill to expererience nature. In this situation I am also getting paid to do this, while you the public are paying us to come out, and I guess I don't blame anyone for not wanting to pay to play in the cold rain. 

So for those of you who just don't like the rain and are ready for winter to end, here are a couple of pictures from past programs to perhaps cheer you up. 


West Point on the Eno


Out on our Teen farm day


Lots of luck...


Flowers along the Eno River



Have a great weekend and we hope to see you soon.  

Friday, February 15, 2013

Eno Discovery Camp Counselor jobs, Durham, NC

Hello everyone,
I hope that you are out on this beautiful day instead of sitting at a computer typing away like I am. 

So we are hiring two Camp Counselors for the Eno Discovery Summer Camp.  Each position is 20 hours per week and is Monday - Friday.  Times will be discussed in the interview.  This is a fun camp to work at as you get to be outdoor, you get to help kids have fun in nature, and you get to work with Karuna and me.  What more could you ask for.  The camp is based at West Point on the Eno and you must be at least 18 years old to apply for the position. 

Here is the link to apply  http://ww2.durhamnc.gov/employment/DisplayJob.cfm?vJobID=462 make sure that you fill out the Summer Employment application and that you specify Camp Counselor I - West Point on the Eno. 

If you have any questions regarding the positions please feel free to email me at christopher.shepard@durhamnc.gov

Here are some pictures from last years camp to hopefully get you excited about working with us.









Thursday, February 14, 2013

Teens in Nature 2013, just around the corner Durham

Hey everyone,

Our new season of Teens in Nature is starting up soon and we just wanted to let you know about the program.

Teens in Nature (T.I.N.)

Teens in Nature is a job skill program for 13-17 year olds who want to gain work experience with environmental groups.  There are 7 weekend sessions and you must be able to attend 6.  Please call us for more details on this  program.  All programs meet at West Point on the Eno.  5101 N Roxboro Rd, Durham 27704.

Cost is $5(CRPC), $6(CRNPC) or $10(NCRPC), $11(NCRNPC) per day.


During this program you will:

· Have fun in nature and learn about Durham environmental professions by working beside other like-minded young people in a meaningful community service setting

· Gain important job and leadership skills


Hill Forest and Intro Day #10183                            Gardening #10701

February 23 Sa 10am-4pm                                          April 27 Sa 10am-4pm

                                                                           

Duke Lemur Center #10698                                      Stream Monitoring #10702

March 9 Sa 10am-4pm                                                 May 11 Sa 10am-4pm

                                                                           

Friends of Sandy Creek #10699                                Bull City Farm and Graduation #10703

March 23 Sa 10am-4pm                                                May 18 Sa 10am

 

Museum of Life and Science #10700

April 20  Sa 10am-4pm

 
What will T.I.N. be like?

With T.I.N., you will be learning cool stuff and having adventures in Durham.  You will volunteer your time with local organizations to experience what people in different environmental fields do. Here are just a few topics we will explore:

 

· Nature Awareness

· Stream Monitoring

· Forest Management

· Animal research and conservation

 

Leadership and Job Skills:

· Apply problem solving skills to real life

      situations

· Generate community within a group

· Enhance communication skills

· Develop planning skills

 















As mentioned before we will treat this as volunteer work as the fee is just to cover gas and other expenses, so they are volunteering for the agencies.  You can register here https://online.activenetwork.com/dprplaymore/Start/Start.asp  and enter each Course ID # to register for each class.  You can find the # next to the name of each session.  If you have any questions please let me know and feel free to forward the information around. 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Eno Discovery Summer Camp, West Point on the Eno


Hi Everyone,

So to supporters of our camps in the past we are asking people, if they feel so inclined, to vote for Eno Discovery Camp (Durham Parks and Recreation) as the best summer camp.  If you decide that you would like to vote for us click the link below and start the process.  You will have to vote in at least 19 other categories as well as Summer Camp to have the vote registered.  If your kids would like to vote for us, you could help them with that too.  Feel free to spread the word to other families you know have been part of camp. Thanks for all your support in the past and we look forward to seeing you again.  Registration info and dates for Eno Discovery are below.


 



 
 

Eno Discovery 2013

Ages 6-8: June 17-21, July 1-5, July 15-19, July 29-August 2

Ages 9-12: June 24-28, July 8-July 12, July 22-26, August 5-9

No Camp: July 4

 
Registration starts on Saturday, March 16 from 9am-1pm at West Point on the Eno or online. 

Registration will continue March 18 until camp is full at the Parks and Recreation office, any recreation center, or online. For more information about this camp , please call 919-560-4405 (ext 6)  or you can email christopher.shepard@durhamnc.gov

 

 

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Starry, Starry Night at Lake Michie (A Constellation Program, Come stargaze with us)

Hello Everyone,
We first it's cold, then it's hot, now it is normal temp.  Rollercoaster weather is here.  I wish we could stay in the winter season, but this seems to be the new normal. 

So next Friday, February 8 we will be up at Lake Michie looking at the stars, learning about the constellations, and enjoying the winter night sky.  We will bring out our astronomy binoculars, our telescope, and knowledge of the night sky.  Winter is a great time to get out and look at the planets and stars as typically the sky is sharper with the drier air. 

The Pleadies, Jupiter, Orion are just some of the neat features in the sky right now.

Here is how it looks as we are setting up
 
Now unfortunately that night was not so clear, but you can't predidict the weather, but I can predict that fun will be had at our Starry, Starry Night program up at beautiful Lake Michie.
Cost is $6(city residents) and $11(non-city residents)
 
 
You can also email me at christopher.shepard@durhamnc.gov for more information.  Hope to see you out there

Monday, January 21, 2013

Lake Michie by Moonlight *Postponed*



***Postponed due to wintry weather...stay tuned for details on the new date****    

 If you’re not afraid of the chilly weather and are looking for something fun to do this Friday night, we have just this program for you!  Join us for peaceful and relaxing nature paddle by moonlight from 7-9 pm, where we will learn about the nocturnal animals that live at Lake Michie. We will meet at the boathouse, pair up, and then take to the lake by canoe for our paddle. Beginners are welcome, and we will provide the canoes and all equipment needed. (You may bring your own canoe or kayak if you would like). I recommend wearing lots of layers, a hat, and gloves to stay warm...last paddle was freezing! We will have hot chocolate and tea at the boathouse, so bring your mug with a top if you are interested in sipping on a hot beverage.
    Everyone will need to preregister for this program by either using the DPR online registration page or by stopping by a recreation center by Wednesday. This program is for adults (ages 18+) and the cost is $6 for Durham residents and $11 for nonresidents.
For online registration, use course id #10168.
If you have any questions, please contact Karuna Markman
karuna.markman@durhamnc.gov
(919)560-4405 opt. #6