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Winter Activities Abound

It’s December. Snow has fallen. It’s winter for all practical purposes. There is a no need to be a couch potato this time of year staying cozy by the fire for hours or binge watching a preferred TV show. Not when there are fun things to do outside, that is! There is actually host of activities that can be done in Nebraska throughout the winter months. So, gather your winter garb, here are some ideas for you: Cross-Country Skiing/Snowshoeing When the snow flies …

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Five Favorite Wild Plant Foods of Fall

It’s autumn. Much precipitation has fallen already. It’s heavy sweatshirt weather. It’s the season for football and pumpkin-spiced everything. And, it’s time to pick pumpkins and harvest the last of the tender crops from your vegetable garden. But, did you know that that beyond that pumpkins, the squash and the tomatoes, fall marks the time of year for gathering and preparing tasty edible wild plants (or parts thereof) from wild places? Sure does. The landscape that surrounds us in Nebraska is actually more lush with wild …

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Fall Is For Being Outdoors!

Unquestionably, fall in Nebraska is one of the best times of the year to spend outdoors! The days are getting shorter, the air is crisp, the crop harvest is underway; the leaves and other foliage are transforming into canopies of deep orange, bright yellow, and brilliant red. And, look at those fall vegetable gardens! They are abundant with tender, brightly colored vegetables. If you are looking for new and different opportunities where you can have fun, burn calories, get more Vitamin D, remain active, and …

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Horseback Ride to Support 4-H

Fundraising trail ride in Nebraska National Forest at Halsey celebrates 20th anniversary. Head, Heart, Hands and Health – since 1958, the Nebraska 4-H Foundation has been supporting youth through hands-on projects that encourage them to stay active and engaged in their communities, and prepare them for the future. With programs ranging from animal science to business to the arts to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), the foundation’s mission is to help provide the financial backing and manpower needed to …

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Fighting the Fear Factor of Foraging for Fall Fungi

Tell someone you hunt mushrooms in the fall, and they’ll utter phrases like: “Are you crazy, do you really know what you’re picking?” “Why do you want to do that, aren’t you scared that you might pick and eat a poisonous one?” “You don’t eat those (fall mushrooms) surely, do you?” Statistics related to the frequency of mushroom poisonings are hard to come by, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia. While the federal agency says the poisoning …

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Time Will Soon Be Ripe For Much Wild Fruit And Berry Picking

The mulberries have been ripe for a couple weeks now. Wild strawberries and raspberries have been picked already. But, soon the bulk of the edible wild fruits and berries in the Nebraska countryside will be ready for harvest. Before you get started in the fun of harvesting wild fruits and berries in Nebraska, here are a some foraging rules, regulations and guidelines that you need to know. Ask the farmer or rancher first! You must acquire permission before gathering wild …

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Ten Tips For Tubers

Leisurely floating on one of Nebraska’s many scenic rivers or streams in an inflated inner tube is a cool, refreshing, relaxing, way to enjoy a hot summer day with family and friends, isn’t it? Tubers take a break from floating the waters of the Niobrara River east of Valentine, NE. Photo courtesy of Daryl Bauer/Nebraska Game and Parks Commission. Oh, yes! Summer river tubing is awesome! There is nothing like free-floating a river on an inflated inner tube just about the water level …

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Cool Cliff Swallows (Of The Big Papio And Beyond)

You can’t miss them. You really can’t. Around bridges over rivers or creeks this time of year, they immediately snatch your attention. Maybe it’s their sheer numbers (hundreds, if not thousands of them) and their extreme aerial acrobatics that catch your eye. Or, maybe it’s them coming in and out of their clusters of gourd-like mud nests clinging to the walls beneath bridge overhangs that capture your awareness. Or, perhaps it is the throng of bird activity along the muddy bank of a stream or mud hole …

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Roasting The Perfect Marshmallow At Your Campsite

Roasting marshmallows over a campfire is one of the highlights of a camping trip or an outdoor gathering, especially to a state park area. No question. You would think roasting a marshmallow over the coals and embers in that furnished fire ring may seem like the easiest thing to do, right? Not necessarily. How many times have you seen someone pull their stick from the fire to reveal a perfectly roasted marshmallow? That’s right, not very often. What you normally see is somebody quickly removing their …

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Help Indian Cave SP trail projects June 2 to celebrate National Trails Day

LINCOLN, Neb. – Show an appreciation for trails and help restore them at Indian Cave State Park on June 2 in celebration of National Trails Day. Volunteers are needed for trail restoration projects that may include wood chipping trails, pruning encroaching vegetation, defining corridors, erosion maintenance and general cleanup. Work will begin at 9 a.m. and end at 4 p.m., or at the volunteer’s discretion. Bring work gloves and appropriate clothing. Pre-registration is required by May 29 by calling the …

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