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Pennsylvania Outdoor Recreation Plan recognized as nation’s best
Pennsylvania has earned top national honors for its work to transform outdoor recreation planning and get residents to spend more time outdoors, DCNR has announced.

The state’s five-year Statewide Outdoor Recreation Plan was honored as the best in the nation by to the National Park Service and the National Association for Recreation Resource Planners at a recent conference.

“We are very proud to receive this award recognizing our work,” DCNR acting Secretary Richard J. Allan said. Read more...

Pennsylvania state parks to host ‘Get Outdoors Day’ events June 11
Four Pennsylvania state parks will host a series of special, day-long events Saturday, June 11, as part of a nationwide “Get Outdoors Day” celebration. Read more...

DCNR asks residents to help win trees for Pennsylvania state parks
With the simple click of a computer mouse, Pennsylvania residents can help plant trees for their state park system through a special promotion sponsored by a national beverage manufacturer. Read more...

Open space added in Lower Susquehanna landscape
Representatives from local, state and national organizations convened June 1 to celebrate the purchase and protection of a 115-acre refuge of green pastures near the City of York. Read more...

Two caves in Forbes State Forest to reopen for exploring
Two popular caves within the Forbes State Forest, Coon Cave in Westmoreland County and Barton Cave in Fayette County, will soon be reopened to the public for recreational caving, DCNR announced last week. Read more...

Statewide giant hogweed eradication program to continue this summer
Pennsylvania is winning its battle against Giant Hogweed, a noxious, invasive weed that can cause blistering and scarring on the skin of susceptible people, but more work remains. Read more...

2011 Envirothon winners savor their hard work
The 28th Pennsylvania State Envirothon was held at Susquehanna University and Shikellamy State Park on Tuesday and Wednesday, May 24 and 25, 2011. . Read more...

Also in the News

Lt. Governor Cawley leads Marcellus Shale commission on tour to see impact of natural gas drilling
Acting DCNR Secretary Richard J. Allan accompanied Lt. Governor Jim Cawley June 1 when he led the Marcellus Shale Advisory Commission on a fact-finding mission to see the impact the natural gas industry is having on communities throughout Lycoming County.

“I want commission members to see for themselves how the growing natural gas industry is affecting Pennsylvania and its communities,” Cawley said. “This experience will be helpful as we begin work to finalize our recommendations to the governor.”

About two dozen members of the commission took part in the tour, which was arranged by the Lycoming County Chamber of Commerce.

Lt. Governor Cawley and commission members talked with local government leaders and met with several residents who have wells on their properties. Other tour stops included well sites operated by Anadarko as well as several local employers that are doing business with the natural gas industry. One such company, Ralph S. Alberts, in Montoursville, has for years made products used in amusement parks but has adapted its techniques for natural gas drilling. It now makes durable plastic well-pad liners used to contain spills at drilling sites. Like many other companies in this region, it is growing.

Banquet to highlight new museum at Pine Grove Furnace State Park
All friends of the Appalachian Trail are cordially invited to the first annual Appalachian Trail Hall of Fame Banquet on Friday evening, June 17. This will be the opening event of the Appalachian Trail Museum Annual Festival Weekend. The Appalachian Trail Museum is located Pine Grove Furnace State Park, about two miles from the midpoint of the Appalachian Trail, the Museum is halfway between Maine and Georgia. It is housed in a building that is itself a historical artifact, a structure built more than two hundred years ago as a grist mill.

The banquet will be held at the famous Allenberry Resort Inn and Playhouse, located just a few steps from the Appalachian Trail in Boiling Springs. A reception with music will begin at 6 p.m. The banquet will start at 7 p.m. Entertainment will be provided by Pennsylvania Jack, a renowned storyteller. Musical entertainment will be provided by The New South Mountain Ramblers. The keynote of the evening will be the announcement of the inaugural class of the Appalachian Trail Hall of Fame. The many volunteers who have made the museum's first year a phenomenal success will also be recognized.

To make a reservation for the event go here. For more information drop a note to

Fort Indiantown Gap to open for tours of rare butterfly habitat
Visitors are invited to see the only population of rare Regal Fritillary butterflies in Pennsylvania four days in July at Fort Indiantown Gap, near Annville, Lebanon County. Free guided carpool tours will begin at 10 a.m. on July 1, 2, 8 and 9. Tours last approximately two and one-half hours, but attendees may leave earlier if necessary. Those wishing to attend should arrive at least 30 minutes early to fill out necessary paperwork and attend a mandatory safety and orientation meeting.

The free tours, which have been offered for more than 10 years, allow the public to see this rare type of butterfly and its associated habitat on military training ranges, as well as many other natural spectacles on the 17,000-acre military post, which serves as the Pennsylvania National Guard’s headquarters.

Participants should meet at the Fort Indiantown Gap Recreation Center in Building 13-190, located at the intersection of Asher Miner Road, Clement Avenue and Route 443. For more information, email or call the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs Wildlife Office at (717) 861-2449.

Agency Spotlight

Delaware State Forest
This forest draws in the visitors.

Upcoming Events

Bogs and Bluebirds at Laurel Hill State Park
A Get Outdoors PA eventJune 11. Held 8:30 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Meet at the Laurel Hill Visitor Center to carpool to the Laurel Summit Bog! Explorer the bog and its unique avian species. We will return to Laurel Hill to walk along the Bluebird Trail in the Laurel Hill Meadow. Registration is required. Register online or by calling (814) 352-8649.

Interest groups, public encouraged to help build next Statewide Preservation Plan
June 9. Trail and conservation organizations as well as the general public are encouraged to participate in an upcoming public forum, the feedback from which will help shape the new Statewide Historic Preservation Plan. The regional public forums will present the results of last year’s value survey and moderate a discussion to identify how to best preserve those values through the Commonwealth’s historic preservation-related programs.

The primary goal of the planning process is for the public to inform the Pennsylvania’s State Historic Preservation Office of what they value in their community in order to determine the preservation priorities of people who live and work in Pennsylvania. This plan will help the state identify, prioritize and address historic preservation needs over the course of the next five years. For more information, visit here, or contact Hannah Charlton at (717) 783-2698.

The remaining public forum:

  • June 9, 2011, 12:30-3:30 p.m. – Ambler. Ambler Theater 108 E. Butler Ave, Ambler, PA 19002

Back-to-back weekend events at Pine Grove Furnace State Park
June 11, 18-19. Pine Grove Furnace State Park and the Appalachian Trail Museum, in conjunction with many of its partners, are preparing for two straight weekends of outdoor events and family programming; National Get Outdoors Day on Saturday, June 11 and the First Appalachian Trail Festival June 18 and 19.

The South Mountain Partnership, and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy are sponsoring National Get Outdoors Day to provide outdoor and education opportunities for the entire family. Events for the day begin at 8:00 a.m. with a half marathon and 5K run to support the Friends of Pine Grove Furnace. Other morning events include trail hikes to local scenic vistas and historical sites, a wildflower walk, a historical scavenger hunt and kayaking for beginners. Registration is required for all events, but—with the exception of the half marathon and 5K run—all are free.

The Appalachian Trail Museum will hold its first festival on June 18-19 at the park. The festival will feature a hiking program, music, storytelling, crafts, competitions and history programs. There also will be a variety of activities for children on both days. Additional information on the Appalachian Trail Museum and the festival weekend events can be found at

Sustainable Landscapes Bus Tour Returns to the Lehigh Valley
June 15. Township officials, landscape architects, planners, educators, park managers, and others—come see eight great examples of ways to plan and manage land in a healthier, more environmentally friendly way while saving money! The tour kicks off at 8 a.m. at Emmaus Community Park. Two busses will then depart for sustainable sites around Lehigh County including: Wildlands Conservancy Pool Wildlife Sanctuary, Jordan Creek Greenway, Ironton Rail Trail, Lehigh Gap Nature Center, Trexler Nature Preserve, Edge of the Woods Native Plant Nursery and Penn’s Meadow. These sites highlight native plantings, natural stormwater management, energy efficiencies and more.

For just $35 you will receive breakfast, lunch, a spot on the bus and handouts. Registration materials and information are available here. Only 100 seats will be available, so register early. For more information about the event, or to inquire about sponsorships, call Cammy at (610) 391-9583 ext. 22.

2011 Sustainable Landscapes Bus Tour to motor through Lancaster County
Note: this event was erroneously listed in a previous issue as taking place in May. The editor regrets the error.

June 23. Township officials, landscape architects, planners, educators, park managers, and others—come see six great examples of ways to plan and manage land in a healthier, more environmentally friendly way while saving money! The tour kicks off at 7:30 a.m. at the Farm and Home Center in Lancaster with a continental breakfast and keynote presentations. Two busses will then depart for sustainable sites around Lancaster County including: Schaeffer Elementary School, Warwick Township Building, Mummau Park, Santo Domingo development, Ethel Swan Park and Raymark (a former industrial site), and Brubaker Farm. These sites highlight native plantings, natural stormwater management, energy efficiencies, and more.

The bargain price of the bus tour is $25 which includes breakfast, lunch, a spot on the bus and handouts. Registration materials are available here. Only 100 seats will be available, so register early. For more information about the event, call Jessica at (717) 214-7511.

River Towns workshop offered
June 28. The workshop is held 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. at PPL Montour Preserve Environmental Education Center Auditorium in Danville, Montour County. The SEDA-COG Community Resource Center and the Susquehanna Greenway Partnership are presenting a workshop series geared towards river towns as part of the River Towns – Phase II: Discovering Middle Susquehanna Valley River Towns project. The workshops are designed to provide information for river towns to decide each one’s unique course as it prepares for the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. The registration form can be downloaded here. Multiple spaces are available if more than one person from your organization should choose to attend. The cost of each individual workshop is $15. Follow the RSVP schedule below in order to allow us to accommodate for lunch. Contact Becky Digan at (570) 524-4491.

June 8, 2011

Agency Spotlight

Delaware State Forest

Delaware State Forest

This forest draws in the visitors.

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