Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Burgess Falls Park Plans Butterfly Garden Event

Burgess Falls State Park and Natural Area will host the sixth annual Butterfly Garden Celebration from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, August 14. A variety of educational programs will be offered in the award-winning Native Butterfly Garden and surrounding park for this event.

“The programming for this year’s celebration offers a variety of special activities, designed with all ages in mind,” said Bill Summers, park manager. “The celebration also is an opportunity to enjoy the butterfly garden at the peak of its beauty and learn what makes it such an important asset to Burgess Falls.”

Scheduled programs will include:

9 a.m. – A Walk in the Woods
State Naturalist Randy Hedgepath will take participants on an easy hike through the forest, talking about trees and telling their stories. Participants will meet at the River Trail/Service Road Loop trailhead.

10 a.m. – Goodness Snakes Alive
The park’s cold-blooded residents will be discussed at the park amphitheater.

11 a.m. – Dragonflies and Damselflies
Join Richard Connors for an easy walk, learning how to identify these unique insects. This program will begin at the park amphitheater, and participants are encouraged to bring binoculars.

11 a.m. – Landscaping with Native Plants
Meet at the amphitheater to learn how to landscape with native plants and attract butterflies and other wildlife to your own yard.

Noon and 2 p.m. - Butterfly Identification Walk
Middle Tennessee Naturalist John Froeschauer will lead an informal butterfly identification “walk and talk,” beginning in the open garden and continuing into the nearby woodland habitat. His talk will focus on native butterfly food and nectar plants. Participants are encouraged to bring binoculars. The program will be held at noon, with a repeat presentation at 2 p.m.

Noon – Creek Studies
Participants will learn to measure a stream’s health by observing the animals that live in it. They will meet at the picnic pavilion and should wear wading shoes.

2 p.m. – Hike to the Big Falls Overlook
Participants will join the park’s Ranger staff for an hour-long hike from the picnic shelter to the main falls overlook. They should wear sturdy shoes and bring water. Meet at the amphitheater.

Burgess Falls is a 350-acre park, which lies on the rugged Eastern Highland Rim in Putnam and White counties. It is noted for its sheer bluffs, narrow ridges, waterfalls and diverse forests. The Burgess Falls Native Butterfly Garden was created by park staff, the Putnam County Master Gardeners, countless volunteers and the Iris Fund group. For more information, call 432-5312.