Friday, May 11, 2012

Comment sought on Md-WVa trail link

The National Park Service is soliciting public comments on a proposed extension of the Western Maryland Rail Trail to Paw Paw.  The agency said Wednesday it will hold public meetings Wednesday in Hancock, Md, and Thursday in Paw Paw on an environmental assessment of the project.  The park service said its preferred alternative would involve 8.1 miles of paved trail construction in two segments.  The project would extend what is now a 22-mile, paved, hiking-and-biking path between Big Pool and Pearre.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Workdays at the West Virginia Botanic Garden

Workdays- we have a WVBG workday once a month starting at 9:00am and generally going until 11 or 12.  Workdays include helping out with current site needs and often include working in the gardens or along the trails.  They are generally scheduled for the 3rd Saturday of the month, but a few have been moved this year to accommodate other events at the Garden.  Our next workday is scheduled for this Saturday, May 12 at 9:00 am.  The main focus of this workday will be planting annuals in various flower beds.  These flowers will enhance the beauty of the gardens for months to come. So far, the remaining workdays are scheduled as follows: June 9, July 21, August 18, Sept 15.  If you would like to be notified closer to the date of the workday, please let me know and I'll add you to the site work volunteer list.

Erin Smaldone
Volunteer Coordinator & Education Director
West Virginia Botanic Garden

Come Grow With Us!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Volunteers sought for lake cleanup

SUTTON - The US Army Corps of Engineers is looking for volunteers to head to Braxton county next weekend for the third annual "Rake the Lake" spring cleanup.  The trash and debris collection at Sutton Lake is set for 10am Saturday.  Staff members will provide trash bags and gloves to volunteers.  A cookout at the Sutton Lake Marina will be held after the event, and the first 200 registered participants will receive a T-shirt.  To volunteer, call the Sutton Lake Project Office at 304-765-2816.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Native Plants Workshop May 13 Reminder

 There is still a little bit of room remaining for the Native Plants Workshop with Dianne Anestis.  Let me know if you would like to be on the list.  Fee is $10 for all but the 2012 class members.

 On Sunday May 13 we are having a workshop on Native Plants - their uses and folklore at  the Botanic Garden from 12:30 to 4:30. Diane Anestis is a well known expert in this field and has agreed to do this program. She was here with Doug Wood for the tracking workshop and added immensely to that program. (She's Doug's wife.) We will do this the same way as the tracking program. Because of space limitations we will be limiting the attendance to 25 people. So please register with me as early as possible. Members of the 2012 Monongahela MN class will not be charged a fee. For all others the fee is $10.00 to help cover expenses for the day. I will send final instructions to the registered participants a few days before the event. This is a good program for certified members who need class hours for re-certification. Looking forward to hearing from you. Ellen

Volunteer Opportunities at Chestnut Ridge Park

Hello Master Naturalists, 

We have a number of volunteer opportunities available at Chestnut Ridge Park for anyone needing to complete their required hours for certification.
Using examples from the 'Volunteer Projects' handout, the following are some areas where you could be of service. We could especially use help with trail development and maintenance at this time.

Education/ Interpretation
Environmental workshops for children
Leading nature walks
Outdoor classroom naturalist activities
Creating brochures, fact sheets, etc.

Field/Research/ Surveys
Field surveys for amphibians, plants, etc.
Plant collections

Interpretive Facilities Enhancement
Trail building and maintenance
Erosion control
Building boardwalks, observation platforms
Construction and placing of nest boxes

Please let us know if you have any other skills you would like to offer.

Thank you!
Justine McCoy
Park Ranger, Chestnut Ridge Park

Friday, May 4, 2012

Mountaineer Audubon Program - Morgantown

May 8th Mountaineer Audubon Program Join us for our Third Annual South Park Bird Walk. We will meet at 5:00pm in the Morgantown High School parking lot. Kelly Williams will lead the walk.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Cheat River Festival returns Saturday in Albright

Friends of Cheat (FOC) hosts the 18th annual Cheat River Festival on Saturday, May 5. Gates open at noon, admission is $15, and children under 12 are free. The festival grounds are off W.Va. 26 just north of Albright, along the banks of the Cheat River. Weekend festivities will kick off Friday with a downriver race. The race will begin at 5:20pm with registration from 3-5pm at the Laurel Highlands Outfitters booth. Registration is $25 in advance and $30 the day of the race. There is a chance the race could be moved or canceled due to low water. Friday, after the race's start, FOC will host a pavilion dedication. FOC will unveil new signage at about 6pm at the festival site. Saturday kicks off with the 8th Annual Cheat Fest 5K at the Preston County Country Club. Registration is from 8:30-9:45am. The race begins at 10am. Cost is $25. Festival gates open at noon. The Cheaters Consignment area introduced in 2011 will be back again under the pavilion. FOC will have drawing and silent auction items up for grabs. To donate an item to the auction, contact the FOC office or email Items can also be dropped off before 6pm Friday at the pavilion. The Kids Tent will be set up from noon-5pm. Music begins at 1pm on the Cheatfest stage. The lineup includes: Lindsey & Ty, The Greens, Johnson's Crossroad, Cello Fury, Stewed Mulligan, Halftime String Band, Rising Regina and Lewis Brothers. For directions, camping info, presale ticket locations and race registrations, visit

Celebrate birds at Coopers Rock

The Avian Conservation Center of Appalachia (ACCA), in collaboration with Coopers Rock State Forest will host a celebration of Morgantown Migratory Bird Day on Saturday (May 5) at Coopers Rock Pavillion. The event is free, child-friendly and begins with bird walks at 7am and 8:30am, and many bird-related activities for people of all ages until 3pm. Info: Avian Conservation Center of Appalachia, 304-906-5438 or