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‘Ding’ Darling NWR expands free summer family programs

By Staff | Jun 8, 2010

Hop aboard the "Ding" Darling NWR Tram Tour for a free family birding excursion every Wednesday and Saturday morning.


School will soon be out, but the learning goes on all summer long!

From Tuesday, June 15 through Sunday, Aug. 15, the J. N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge will be offering free programs designed especially for families, meaning that kids will absorb educational information without even realizing it!


With support from the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge (DDWS) and Tarpon Bay Explorers, the refuge is offering three free education programs this year, one in partnership with the Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum.

Among the no-cost programs being offered this summer:


• Family Birding Tram Tours — Every Wednesday and Saturday at 10 a.m. All aboard for this new offering! The first 28 people to arrive score a free narrated birding tour along Wildlife Drive. Learn how to identify and count birds during the tour, then return to the Education Center to enter sighting data into the E-Bird Trail Tracker computer.

• Reading at the Refuge — Every Thursday at 11 a.m. Attendees to each reading-and-crafts session will receive a free Nature Journal (one to each child) in which to record their impressions of their refuge visit and future nature encounters.


• Family Beach Walk — Every Tuesday at 9 a.m. In partnership with the Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum, the program convenes at Gulfside Park for a one-hour exploration of the refuge’s gulf-front Perry Tract.


For more information on the refuge summer programs, call 472-1100.


To join DDWS and become a friend to the refuge, stop in at the Refuge Education Center or visit www.dingdarlingsociety.org.