Thursday, April 16, 2009

Spring Blooms in the Dunes - May 2, Muskegon

woodland phlox
woodland phlox (photo from the Gillette Nature Association)
a news release of the Michigan DNR

The Gillette Sand Dune Visitor Center at P.J. Hoffmaster State Park will host its annual "Spring Blooms in the Dunes" event on Saturday, May 2, to celebrate the arrival of spring. The event will feature a wildflower sale, and a day full of nature-related activities at the visitor center.

From 9 a.m .to 2 p.m., there will be a Native Plant Sale at the visitor center. Responsibly propagated white trillium and other spring woodland wildflowers will be available for sale. The sale will also feature a limited supply of ferns and other large perennials. It is best to come early, as plants have sold out quickly in the past. The sale is sponsored by the Gillette Nature Association, and all proceeds benefit the visitor center and its programs.

Also from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., children can fish for trout at the visitor center trout pond, sponsored by the Michigan Anglers Association and the Muskegon Sportfishing Association. Children will receive a free Michigan Youth Angler license courtesy of the Muskegon Sportfishing Association.

Other programs that day include:
  • Explore Pond Life. From 10 to 11 a.m., there will be a hands-on session to view all forms of pond life. Children who participate will receive a free Department of Natural Resources habitat poster.
  • A Fish Story. From 11 a.m. to noon, this program will explore the many hazards that fish have to overcome to survive in Michigan lakes and rivers.
  • Lunch With the Bluebirds. At noon, take a hike with Don Petersen, a seasonal naturalist at the visitor center, to view the park's resident bluebirds. Participants should bring a sack lunch and binoculars.
  • Native Plant Gardening. At 1 p.m., Master Gardener Jenelle Tokarczyk will lead a session on how to successfully garden with native wildflowers and other plants.
  • Spring Blooms Hike. At 2 p.m., Don Petersen will lead a hike in search of spring blooms and other features of the park's dune landscape.

All programs at the Gillette Sand Dune Visitor Center are free. The visitor center is located at P.J. Hoffmaster State Park at 6585 Lake Harbor Rd. in Muskegon.

See Gillette Nature Association
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