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The Power of Summer Camp

“…camps help young people discover and explore their talents, interests, and values. Most schools don’t satisfy all these needs. Kids who have had these kinds of (camp) experiences end up being healthier and have less problems which concern us all.” – Peter Scales, Ph.D., noted author/educator, and Senior Fellow, The Search Institute. Like most kids, my parents enrolled me in local club sports while growing up.  Often I found myself  frustrated with these because I wasn’t very interested or skilled …

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Experience spring bird migration at Ponca SP’s Marsh Madness

LINCOLN, Neb. – Enjoy the wonders of the spring bird migration from scenic Ponca State Park (SP) during Marsh Madness on March 3, 10 and 17. The park’s location adjacent to the Missouri River presents a significant flyway that serves as the feeding, breeding and staging ground for migratory birds. Ponca SP is listed as an “Important Bird Area” by the National Audubon Society, with nearly 300 bird species sighted and more than 70 of those breeding in the area. …

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Fort Atkinson SHP residence to be burned March 3

LINCOLN, Neb. – Fort Atkinson State Historical Park will be closed to all vehicle traffic while an old residence at the park is burned March 3. The Fort Calhoun Fire Department will burn down the structure as a training exercise. The alternate date for the burn is March 4. Rubble left following the burn will be hauled off site to a licensed landfill. The house is in poor condition and has been cleared for disposal.

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Mahoney wine, craft beer festival set for May 11-12

LINCOLN, Neb. – The fifth annual Sip Nebraska festival, featuring tastings of wine, craft beer and spirits made in Nebraska, will return to Eugene T. Mahoney State Park on May 11-12. The event will feature more than 100 tastings from Nebraska wineries, breweries and distilleries. In addition, visitors can enjoy live music, food, and artisan and craft vendors. Yoga classes, educational sessions, trolley tours of the park, and salsa, hip-hop and line dancing lessons also will be offered. Ticket prices …

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March outdoor calendar

LINCOLN, Neb. – The following is a listing of Nebraska Game and Parks Commission (NGPC) events and important dates in March. Get more event details at Calendar.OutdoorNebraska.gov. Visit OutdoorNebraska.org for a list of hunter education classes and boating safety classes. March 1-14 – Archery paddlefish permit application period March 3 – Volunteer Youth Fishing Instructor Training, St. Mary’s Parish Center, Bellevue March 3 – Citizen Science Workshop, Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District, Omaha March 3, 10, 17 – Marsh Madness, …

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Springtime Foraging: The Dryad’s Saddle

While there will be more chilly, frosty nights — and yes, most likely, more snow — in the Nebraska countryside over the next several weeks, it is safe to say that spring is coming! So, in advance of those days exhibiting warm sunshine, calm breezes and moist conditions, there is a widespread edible, palatable fungi that you need to know. Along with finding and picking morel mushrooms, there is the dryad’s saddle to harvest in your favorite woodlands. Dryad’s saddle? The Dryad’s saddle (Polyporus squamosus) , a.k.a., pheasant back’s mushroom, or hawks wing, is …

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Nebraska’s Outdoor Venture Parks

venture

Creating a New Legacy Ropes courses and water playgrounds… state-of-the-art aquariums and touch tanks… these are just a few of the exciting attractions coming soon as part of the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission’s Venture Parks complex. Yet excitement isn’t the Commission’s only goal. After the opening of Platte River State Park’s Crawdad Creek in the fall of 2016, Owen Roberts-Day visited with his daughter, Hattie. Owen watched his daughter happily playing in the water, where children are encouraged to …

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Brush piles to be burned at several central Nebraska SRAs

LINCOLN, Neb. – Parks staff of the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission will burn brush piles, as weather allows, at several central Nebraska state recreation areas (SRA). Burns will take place at Calamus Reservoir SRA, Fort Kearny SRA, Mormon Island SRA, Windmill SRA and Victoria Springs SRA. Brush piles are created by the removal of eastern red cedar trees in grassland or timber stands or by trees damaged during storms. The removal of brush piles will open grasslands and timber …

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Commission recognizes conservation officers, approves reduced-price restricted deer permit

LINCOLN, Neb. – Two Nebraska conservation officers received special recognition for their heroic efforts from the North American Wildlife Enforcement Officers Association during the Jan. 19 Nebraska Game and Parks Commission meeting at Eugene T. Mahoney State Park. Officer Bryce Streger helped families escape a western Nebraska wildfire and evacuated an elderly couple in the nick of time. Streger lost all of his personal belongings in the fire. Officer Brian Piernicky responded to an accident near Swanson Reservoir and located …

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Badger Day in the forecast at Wildcat Hills

GERING, Neb. – The groundhog may or may not see its shadow, but the forecast says there is a highly favorable chance for people to learn about another burrowing animal next month. Badger Day will be Saturday, Feb. 3, at 10 a.m. at the Wildcat Hills Nature Center south of Gering. Amanda Filipi, Nebraska Game and Parks Commission outdoor education specialist, said that Badger Day was inspired by Groundhog Day – which was actually inspired by Badger Day. To Germans, …

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