Update: November 17, 2014
Feed the Birds by Hand at The West Woods!
Winter is a great time to observe birds, and what better place to observe them than the comfortable, serene wildlife feeding station at The West Woods Nature Center. But what if we told you that YOU could be the bird feeder?
Following the saying "a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush," Geauga Park District's Bird in the Hand Project allows you to feed the wild birds by hand!
This project debuted in the winter of 2014 to great success, and the Black-capped Chickadees immediately warmed up when the feeder went back out this fall.
To try your hand at feeding the birds, follow these three steps:
1) Time up your visit for daylight hours and dress warmly - extra layers, hat and gloves - since you will be standing still. If it's between 10 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., stop into the nature center to collect some black oil sunflower seed; otherwise, use a little from the feeder already placed on site. Hand-feeding works best with just one or two people or a small group, like three or four.
2) Follow the Trout Lily Trail, then hang a right at the fork after the boardwalk across the wetlands, following the sign. Soon you'll come upon the feeding station marked by a feeder and a mannequin, "Parker," who keeps the birds familiar with a human presence. (Parker is pretty realistic; then again, birds are fairly easy to fool.)
3) Take down the feeder, hide it under the bucket that's there,
Why was the Bird in the Hand Project established anyway? Well...'cause it's cool! (Click here to watch Chief Naturalist John Kolar feed the birds last year.)
Led this year by naturalists Dottie Drockton and Linda Gilbert and a crew of dedicated volunteers, this project is one that you won't want to miss - starting now and lasting all winter long.
Update: November 15, 2014
2015 Registration & Fee Schedule
Click here for the new fee schedule for 2015 reservations, which will open on the following schedule: December 15 for Geauga County residents, January 1 for all others.
Update: November 10, 2014
Q: What's New with The Maple Highlands Trail?
A: The new south section of The Maple Highlands Trail is now open! Click here for a map that includes details about the new section (extending below Headwaters Park), and stay tuned to this page for an announcement, coming very soon now, of the opening of the new north section (the part that looks like a bent arm above Chardon).
Update: October 31, 2014
Now Accepting Small Research Grant Applications
If you haven’t already submitted a proposal for Geauga Park District’s Small Research Grant program, please hurry! Project proposals are being accepted until Wednesday, December 31.
Geauga Park District will award up to $3,000 for a one-year project and $6,000 for a two-year project if approved.
Update: September 30, 2014
Public Internet Access
Update: September 19, 2014
Q: What's New with the Something's Afoot Exhibit?
A: We know dinosaur bones have been found all over the country, but did you know that some were found right here in Geauga? Have you ever wanted to see them? It's almost time for your chance! Get the scoop on an upcoming update to our Something's Afoot exhibit on our Special Events page!
Update: July 28, 2014
Play Ball! and Other Fun Activities in Your Parks
New baseball backstops are now installed, along with other activity opportunities, just in time for the holiday weekend. Enjoy! (And don't forget to share.)
Bass Lake Preserve — fishing pier, sand volleyball, horseshoe pits, bocce ball court, tetherball, activity field backstop (just added)
Beartown Lakes Reservation — horseshoe pits, bocce ball court, tetherball
Big Creek Park — soccer goal, tetherball, activity field backstop, sand volleyball
Chickagami Park — soccer goal, horseshoe pits, tetherball, activity field backstop
Frohring Meadows — soccer goal, tetherball
Orchard Hills Park — orchard-themed playground
Swine Creek Reservation — soccer goal, horseshoe pits, tetherball, activity field backstop (just added)
Sunnybrook Preserve — horseshoe pits, bocce ball court, tetherball
Update: May 13, 2014
Burton-Middlefield Rotary Makes Substantial Contribution to Nature Scopes
In support of Geauga Park District's Nature Scopes binocular program for county fifth-graders, Burton-Middlefield Rotary Club presented a check for $3,000 at its May 7 meeting, making it the largest civic group donor to the program.
"Burton-Middlefield Rotary believes that Geauga Park District's Nature Scopes program should be available to every fifth-grader in Geauga County," said club treasurer Tracy Jemison. "It is a great educational program that stimulates the students' interest in science. We applaud the Park District for offering this program to the fifth-graders throughout Geauga County."
Nature Scopes is a comprehensive, year-long program aligned with Ohio Science Education Content Standards. It reached 90 percent of county fifth-graders this year, with a goal of reaching 100 percent by the 2015-16 school year.
"But we can only do this with the continued support from individuals and civic organizations like the Burton-Middlefield Rotary," said Teresa Runion, Park District development associate, pictured above with Burton-Middlefield Rotary President Rich Newsome. "The club has contributed to this program for three years, and Geauga Park District is very appreciative of its partnership and support."
Research shows that we spend 90 percent of our time indoors, but there is evidence that nature is critical for a child's healthy development - not just physically, but emotionally and intellectually.
Nature Scopes teaches kids to get outside and get plugged into Nature with binoculars, not plugged into a video game or TV. Since the program's inception in 2003, it has reached 4,300 Geauga kids - and all funds are underwritten by private donations that purchase binoculars and field guides given to the students through this program.
Update: February 16, 2012
White-nose Syndrome Found at The West Woods
Update: January 28, 2011
Social Media and Our Voices of Nature eNewsletter
It's never been easier to find out what's going on at your Geauga Park District! Click here to receive our new Voices of Nature eNewsletter, featuring pictures, articles and upcoming programs; "Like" us on Facebook or "Follow" us on Twitter for daily updates and special insights from our experienced naturalist team; or check out our YouTube page, featuring more than 150 clips of park fun "in the field"!
The mission of Geauga Park District is to preserve, conserve and protect the natural features of Geauga County and to provide outdoor recreational experiences to our