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Explore the parks with these Game and Parks events in May

May is Bird Month in Nebraska. What better place is there to celebrate than in a state park area? The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission has several bird-related events in May for people to explore, as well as many other opportunities. Here are several:

Platte River Art Show set for April 29-May 1

View paintings, sculpture, photography, pottery and more from reputable Midwestern artists at the Platte River Art Show on April 29-May 1 at Eugene T. Mahoney State Park.

The show begins with a wine and cheese tasting from 6-9 p.m. April 29 at Peter Kiewit Lodge. The show continues from 9 a.m.-8 p.m. April 30 and 9 a.m.-4 p.m. May 1.

Arbor Day celebrating 150th anniversary

Come to Nebraska City April 29-May 1 and celebrate the 150th anniversary of Arbor Day where it all began – Arbor Lodge.

Take a self-guided tour of the home and learn about the history of Arbor Day. Experience the Women of Arbor Lodge display, get a peek into spring planting on the Morton Farm and view vintage postcards of Arbor Lodge. The park grounds are open for anyone wanting to explore. Check out the 52-room mansion for free Arbor Day, April 29.

Open hours are 9 a.m.-5 p.m. April 29, 9 a.m.-7 p.m. April 30 and 11 a.m.-5 p.m. May 1. There is no cost for park entry.

North Platte plans Mini BioBlitz

From 10 a.m. to noon May 2, Nebraska Game and Parks will host the North Platte City Nature Challenge Mini BioBlitz at Cody Park, along the North Platte River.

Participants will learn how to identify aquatic species, plants, fungi and birds. Participants are welcome to stay at each station as long as they please.

This Mini BioBloitz is part of the statewide City Nature Challenge, a global effort to document nature in urban areas and learn about the animal and plant life discovered there. In addition to the statewide challenge, North Platte, Lincoln, Norfolk, Omaha and Scottsbluff are hosting the challenge in their backyards.

To learn more, visit OutdoorNebraska.gov/citynaturechallenge.

Eugene T. Mahoney SP to host Sip Nebraska May 6-7

Sip Nebraska will bring together local wine, craft beer, spirits, and their fans to celebrate Nebraska’s beverage industry May 6-7 at Eugene T. Mahoney State Park.

Enjoy a full weekend of unlimited tastings from Nebraska’s best-produced wines, hard ciders, craft beers and spirits from 4-10 p.m. May 6 and 1-10 p.m. May 7.

Other activities include lawn games, live music, dance lessons, park tours, and food and craft vendors.

Visit the event listing at calendar.outdoornebraska.gov for more information and to buy tickets.

Take part in birding hike May 14 at Fort Robinson SP

All ages are invited to participate in a birding hike May 14 at Fort Robinson State Park.

The hike will begin at 9 a.m. at the Post Playhouse, then continue down to the flat White River Trail, a chipped-rock trail that runs through the park.

Hikers should dress for the weather, and bring sturdy shoes, water and sunscreen. A limited number of binoculars and field guides will be available.

This program is free, but a park entry permit is required.

Sherman Reservoir SRA to host Fishing and Furs

Enjoy some fishing and learn fun facts about mammals during Fishing and Furs on May 14 at Sherman Reservoir State Recreation Area.

It will be all about angling and education with the park naturalist from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at Marina Bay. Fishing poles and worms will be provided.

A park entry permit is required.

Make birdhouses and feeders May 14 at Swanson Reservoir

Celebrate Nebraska Bird Month by making birdhouses and feeders from recycled materials May 14 at Swanson Reservoir State Recreation Area near Trenton.

This event is great for all ages. Supplies will be available while they last, but participants may bring their own building materials, such as milk jugs, nesting materials and stickers.

Meet at the large shelter on Trail 4 directly across from the marina at 1 p.m. A valid park entry permit is required.

Tyler Vanderheiden Memorial Run to benefit Platte River SP trail

Registration is open for the Tyler Vanderheiden Memorial Run, an annual race aimed at raising awareness and understanding of mental health that also acts as a fundraiser for Nebraska Game and Parks state park trails.

The run is May 14 at Cody Park in North Platte. Participants may choose between a 2-mile or 5-mile distance and run it virtually.

This year, funds raised will help support the construction and upgrade of the Platte River State Park trail that leads to Stone Creek Falls. Improvements are aimed at making the trail Americans with Disabilities Act accessible.

Visit the event listing at calendar.outdoornebraska.gov for more information and to register.

Wildcat Hills Nature Center to host total lunar eclipse viewing party

Come to the Wildcat Hills Nature Center from 9-11 p.m. May 15 and join a total lunar eclipse viewing party.

Dress comfortably and prepare to stay up late to view the Blood Moon, the first of two total lunar eclipses in 2022.

This program at Wildcat Hills State Recreation Area is free, but a park entry permit is required.

Enders Reservoir plans BioBlitz

Enders Reservoir State Recreation Area will be hosting a two-day BioBlitz on May 20-21 for people of all ages.

Participants will help set reptile, amphibian and mammal traps,  as well as bat nets on day one. On day two, they’ll have the opportunity to learn more about the animals captured and released during the bioblitz.

Professional biologists from the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and The Bird Conservancy of the Rockies, will present on mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles, aquatic species, and pollinators — and pollinator planting.

Find the complete schedule in the events listing at calendar.outdoornebraska.gov.

The event is free, but a Nebraska state park entry permit is required. Park permits can be purchased at the park the day of the event or online at OutdoorNebraska.org.

Enjoy Car Show, Migratory Bird Day at Indian Cave SP

Join a full day of activities at Indian Cave State Park on May 28 with the Show and Shine Car Show and the Eighth Annual Migratory Bird Day.

Registration for the car show, which includes automobiles, trucks, tractors and motorcycles, is from 2-3 p.m. Awards are at 6 p.m. Enjoy Hot Wheels races at 4 p.m.

Migratory Bird Day events include hands-on activities, bird crafts and games from 4-7:30 p.m., a fish fry from 6-7:30 p.m., and the Glow in the Dark Bird Egg Hunt at 9 p.m.

Visit the event listing at calendar.outdoornebraska.gov for more information. A park entry permit is required.

About Jerry Kane

Jerry Kane is the news manager with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission. He can be contacted at jerry.kane@nebraska.gov or 402-471-5008.

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