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Refuge to kick off free seasonal programs in January

By Staff | Nov 29, 2019

PHOTO PROVIDED Learn more about Jay Norwood “Ding” Darling and his work at a free weekly program.

The J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge on Sanibel recently announced its calendar of daily free tours and programs for winter 2020, which will begin on Jan. 6 and runs through April 19.

Daily programs will begin at 8:30 a.m. and include activities and topics like “Ding” the Man, Beach Walk, Endangered Species, and Indigo Trail Walk. Special this year in honor of the refuge’s 75th anniversary, the “Ding” the Man program will take place on Tuesdays at 10 a.m. in the Visitor & Education Center. Survey the life of Jay Norwood “Ding” Darling through never-before-seen memorabilia and tales of his achievements in the realms of editorial cartooning and conservation.

Long before there was a refuge named “Ding,” the cartoonist won two Pulitzer Prizes, started the Federal Duck Stamp Program and designed the first stamp, and pushed for the creation of the Sanibel National Wildlife Refuge, which now bears his name.

“We are excited to tell this important story, because so many don’t realize our deep-seated origins,” Supervisory Refuge Ranger Toni Westland, who will present the program, said. “Our full range of programs promises something for all ages.”

The free educational programs are made possible through support from the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge.

For more information, visit dingdarlingsociety.org/articles/free-refuge-programs.