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Fairfax County Park Authority


The Fairfax County Park Authority no longer follows the closing schedule of public schools during inclement weather. Instead, the Park Authority will follow Fairfax County Government closures. Unless Fairfax County closes all county facilities, RECenters and other park facilities will remain open for general use. Classes, programs and events will go on as planned at Park Authority facilities unless otherwise noted by FCPA.

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Register with Parktakes OnlineSpring Listings Online Now!
Registration Underway!

Browse on-line listings, check class enrollment and register with a few clicks of your mouse.

Internet registration offered daily, 5am to 11pm

Park VideosPark Videos

Camps

Summer Adventures in Parks

Camp season is just around the corner, and with hundreds of Fairfax County Park Authority camps in the mix, there’s no reason for a kid to declare “I’m bored” this spring and summer.

Spring and Summer Camp Registration Begins February 2!

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The First Tee

Laurel Hill Sets Up for The First Tee

A world of opportunity awaits children and teens at Laurel Hill Golf Club. The renowned program, named The First Tee, is for students age 7-18 and teaches golf skills and life skills encompassing core values that help young players flourish both on and off the golf course. It is being offered at Laurel Hill in partnership with The First Tee of Greater Washington, D.C.

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Rare Wildlife Returns to
Huntley Meadows

Rare Wildlife Returns to Huntley Meadows

Treat yourself and your family to some of the best nature watching in the region this spring at Huntley Meadows Park. Spring rains fill the wetlands, and the warming weather causes an explosion of plant and animal life.

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Stride Right with a
Spring Hike

Stride Right with a Spring Hike

Need a cure for cabin fever? Take a hike! Hiking is a form of exercise that anyone can take up at any age, and Fairfax County is well-known for its picturesque and diverse trail system.

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Celebrate Fairfax

Celebrate Fairfax County’s 275th Birthday in Parks!

This year marks the 275th anniversary of Fairfax County, and the Park Authority is celebrating with commemorative activities throughout 2017!

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Out with the Old, In with the New

Out with the Old, In with the New

Start the New Year working out on new fitness equipment at Fairfax County RECenters! Cutting-edge upgrades include new, 15-station Cybex Prestige weight-training circuits, belt-driven Startrack spin bikes and Startrack Max Racks.

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Fifty Plus

50+ Connect, Engage, Play

Our 50+ page is a one-stop-shop for activities and experiences in County parks specifically geared toward contemporary 50-somethings.

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Calendar of Events

Click a date from the calendar(s) to see what's happening on that date. BOLD indicates events are scheduled.

February 2017
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March 2017
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Wednesday, February 1

History Tots-Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(1-3 yrs.) Bring your toddler to Ellanor C. Lawrence Park to explore history through sight, sound, smell and touch with indoor and outdoor activities. This month’s topic is Valentines. Programs run from 9:45 to 10:30 a.m. and from 11 to 11:45 a.m. The cost is $6 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult who can participate in the program. Call 703-631-0013.

Friday, February 2

Friday, February 3

Garden Talks with Master Gardeners: Plants that Bully Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(16-Adult) Give invasive plants an inch and they’ll take your yard. From 1:30 to 2:30 p.m., Master Gardeners at Green Spring Gardens will show you native alternatives to grow instead. The cost is $10 per person. Call 703-642-5173.

Saturday, February 4

Washington Gardener Seed Exchange - Subscriber Click to Register with Parktakes Online
Washington Gardener Seed Exchange - Others Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Washington Gardener (WG) Magazine co-hosts the 12th annual Seed Exchange at Green Spring Gardens with lectures and face-to-face seed swaps from 12:30 to 4 p.m. Bring your extra seeds to swap and get expert planting advice. The cost is $15 for Friends of Green Spring members and WG subscribers; $20 for others. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

Astronomy for Family Fun: PlanetsClick to Register with Parktakes Online
(4-Adult) Learn about the planets and moons and their effect on us and the rest of the solar system. This program at Hidden Oaks Nature Center from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. costs $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. For more, call 703-941-1065.

Where Are All the Animals Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-7 yrs.) Explore how animals survive the winter through a puppet show, view live animals and make a craft at Hidden Oaks Nature Center from 2 to 3 p.m. The program costs $7 per child, and children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

Sunday, February 5

Maple Syrup Boil-Down
(3-Adult) The maple trees are tapped at Colvin Run Mill. Bundle up and watch as sap is boiled down into sweet syrup over an open fire from noon to 2 p.m. Sample syrup over fresh baked cornbread while supply lasts! The cost is $5 per person. No reservations are required. For more information, call 703-759-2771.

Caribbean Reef Puppet Show Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-7 yrs.) Join an octopus, ray, shark, lobster and friends in this undersea adventure at Hidden Oaks Nature Center. After the show, play a game, sing songs and make a craft. The program from 2 to 3 p.m. costs $7 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Call 703-941-1065.

Winter Lecture: Rescuing Eden Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Garden historian Carolyn Seebohm shares her book “Rescuing Eden: Preserving America’s Historic Gardens,” a look at rescuing historic gardens from neglect and demolition. A book signing follows the lecture. This program at Green Spring Gardens runs 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. The cost is $10 per person for advance registration or $12 at the door. Call 703-642-5173.

Monday, February 6

Little Acorns-Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-4 yrs.) Preschoolers and their accompanying adult share nature’s wonders in this interactive class at Hidden Oaks Nature Center with finger plays, stories, activities and outdoor exploration. Sessions run from 9:45 to 10:30 a.m. and from 11 to 11:45 a.m. Topics vary: 2/6 Animal Valentines; 2/13 Walk, Waddle and Wiggle; 2/27 Polar Animals. The cost for each session is $6 per child. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

Little Hands on the Farm: Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-5 yrs.) Join us for fun in the Visitor Center at Frying Pan Park and learn about animals, farm chores, and farm life in winter through stories, crafts and games. The program for children age two and three runs 9:45 to 10:30 a.m. The program for ages three to five runs 11 to 11:45 a.m. The cost is $10 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Call 703-437-9101.

Garden Sprouts: Nature Playgroup Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-5 yrs.) Join our Nature Playgroup at Green Spring Gardens. Your preschooler enjoys nature-themed activities while you meet other playgroup parents one Monday a month. The programs from 10 to 11:30 a.m. cost $6 per child. Children must come with an adult. Call 703-642-5173.

Wednesday, February 7

Wednesday, February 8

Nature Tots at Walney Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(1-3 yrs.) Bring your toddler to explore nature through sight, sound, smell and touch at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park. Programs include both indoor and outdoor activities. The topic in February is wind and mud. Sessions run 9:45 to 10:30 a.m. and 11 to 11:45 a.m. The cost is $6 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult who can participate. Call 703-631-0013.

Thursday, February 9

Kids’ Korner-Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-6 yrs.) Preschoolers explore nature or history once a month at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park, accompanied by an adult. An outdoor activity and craft are included. The topic in February is birds. The program from 1 to 1:45 p.m. costs $6 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

Friday, February 10

Campfire Fridays: Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) Enjoy the roar of a campfire, s’mores and animals at Hidden Pond Nature Center in this monthly event from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Explore different topics and parts of the park each time. The cost is $8 per person. Children must come with a registered adult. Call 703-451-9588.

Full Moon Nature Hike & Campfire Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(6-Adult) Hike under the full moon at Burke Lake Park. Your naturalist guide points out signs of creatures that glide, fly and tiptoe through the woods in the dark. End with a campfire and s’mores. The program from 7 to 8 p.m. costs $7 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. For more, call 703-323-6600.

Animal Pajama Party Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-6 yrs.) Put on your PJs and come to Hidden Oaks Nature Center at 7 p.m. to hear stories, meet animals and wish goodnight to the center’s animals. Bring a favorite stuffed animal! The 45-minute program costs $6 per child. Children must come with an adult. Call 703-941-1065.

Storytelling Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) Bring a snack and enjoy stories about Winter’s Wrath as told by an expert storyteller at Riverbend Park. We’ll start a campfire if the weather cooperates. Meet at the Nature Center. The program from 5 to 6:30 p.m. costs $8 per person. Children must attend with a registered adult. Call 703-759-9018.

Saturday, February 11

Evening Walk Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Join naturalist P.J. Dunn at Huntley Meadows Park to hike the trails after dark as you look and listen for owls, beavers and other night animals. The program from 5:15 to 7:15 p.m. costs $8 per person. Call 703-768-2525.

African-Americans at Walney Walking Tour Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(6-Adult) In this interactive walking tour through Ellanor C. Lawrence Park, learn the names and stories of the many African-American families who lived here in slavery and in freedom. The one-hour program begins at 11 a.m. on Saturday and at 2 p.m. on Sunday. The cost is $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Call 703-631-0013.

Family Fun: Sensational Seeds Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(5-Adult) Explore the sensational world of seeds from 10 to 11 a.m. at Green Spring Gardens. Work with seeds and learn how they grow. Plant some to take home to grow. The cost is $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Call 703-642-5173.

Premium Tea and Chocolate Pairing
(16-Adult) In this delectable seminar at Colvin Run Mill, sip premium teas and savor a variety of decadent chocolates. Learn how to pair premium tea and chocolate successfully to bring out the best of both. Take a tea-sampler home. Certified Tea Specialist and Chef Laurie Bell of Great Falls Tea Garden leads the program from 1 to 3 p.m. The cost is $35 per person. Reservations are required by February 8. Call 703-759-2771.

Punch: A Cup of History
(Adults 21+) Luke Pecoraro, Director of Archaeology at Mount Vernon, presents the history of punch, the popular drink of sailors, explorers and patriots for more than four centuries. Come to Historic Green Spring from 1 to 3:30 p.m. and taste one or two of George and Martha Washington’s favorite punch recipes. The program is followed by a traditional English tea. The cost is $42 for the program and tea; $18 for the program only. Reservations required. Call 703-941-7987.

Feeding Day! Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-Adult) Join a naturalist and youth volunteers at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park to search for worms and insects and help serve dinner to the display animals. Make a birdfeeder to take home and use. The program from 10 to 11 a.m. costs $7 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Call 703-631-0013.

Astronomy for Family Fun: Stars Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(4-Adult) Learn about the natural and cultural science of stars, fun facts about our own star and the most easily viewed constellations. Learn how you can further explore constellations as a family. This program at Hidden Oaks Nature Center runs from 6:45 to 7:45 p.m. The cost is $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. Call 703-941-1065.

Sunday, February 12

Orienteering Workshop Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(8-Adult) Come to Burke Lake Park from noon to 2 p.m. and learn how to use a compass, read a topographic map and navigate orienteering courses. The cost is $25 per person. A compass is required. Call 703-323-6600.

Maple Syrup Boil-Down
(3-Adult) The maple trees are tapped at Colvin Run Mill. Bundle up and watch as sap is boiled down into sweet syrup over an open fire from noon to 2 p.m. Sample syrup over fresh baked cornbread while supply lasts! The cost is $5 per person. No reservations are required. For more information, call 703-759-2771.

Valentine Tea and Poetry Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-Adult) Enjoy poetry and tea at the Machen Farm at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park with your sweetheart. A costumed interpreter shares our Walney mystery love poem and invites you to write your own while dining on mint tea and sugar cookies. Frame your poem in the style of a childhood Valentine. The program from 3 to 4 p.m. costs $8 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Call 703-631-0013.

Winter Lecture: The Presidents’ Gardens Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Garden historian Marta McDowell shares the history of the White House grounds in this program at Green Spring Gardens from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. This entertaining history reveals how the story of the garden is also the story of America. A book signing follows. The program costs $10 per person in advance; $12 at the door. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

Animal Valentines Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(4-8 yrs.) Play musical valentines and critter sweetheart games as you learn how animals find a mate. Meet live animals at Hidden Oaks Nature Center and make an animal valentine craft. The program from 1:30 to 2:15 p.m. costs $7 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

Monday, February 13

Little Acorns-Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-4 yrs.) Preschoolers and their accompanying adult share nature’s wonders in this interactive class at Hidden Oaks Nature Center with finger plays, stories, activities and outdoor exploration. Sessions run from 9:45 to 10:30 a.m. and from 11 to 11:45 a.m. Topics vary: 2/6 Animal Valentines; 2/13 Walk, Waddle and Wiggle; 2/27 Polar Animals. The cost for each session is $6 per child. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

Tuesday, February 14

Homeschool at the Pond Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(6-12 yrs.) This five-part program is based on the popular Pohick Rangers series at Hidden Pond Nature Center. Topics include pond study, geology, fishing, reptiles, stream study, nocturnal wildlife and tracking. Classes meet from 1 to 2 p.m. The cost is $44 per child. Call 703-451-9588.

Valentine’s Day Tea
(Adults) Celebrate the day of love and flowers with an elegant afternoon tea at Historic Green Spring. Explore the legend of St. Valentine with our special quiz, and earn a chance to take home a beautiful door prize. A favor bag is included. The tea from 1 to 3 p.m. costs $36 per person. Reservations are required. Call 703-941-7987.

Wednesday, February 15

Tiny Tea Party Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) Hear the story “The Little Red Hen Makes Pizza” as you sip mint tea or apple juice and munch animal crackers at Hidden Oaks Nature Center. Make a craft, too, in this program from 10 to 10:45 a.m. The cost is $7 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

Thursday, February 16

Afternoon Innovators Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(7-12 yrs.) Come to Ellanor C. Lawrence Park and learn about the many ways the Machen family used technology to make their lives easier. Hear from a historian, look at documents relating to 19th century technology, and make technology prototypes. The program from 5 to 6:30 p.m. costs $10 per person. Call 703-631-0013.

Friday, February 17

Storytelling Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) Bring a snack and enjoy stories about Ancient Times as told by an expert storyteller at Riverbend Park. The program from 5 to 6:30 p.m. costs $8 per person. Children must come with a registered adult. Call 703-759-9018.

Saturday, February 18

Astronomy Festival Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) At Riverbend Park from 6 to 8 p.m., enjoy guided stargazing, telescope viewing, campfire stories, games and activities. You can purchase hot chocolate and snacks. This event will be canceled if it’s raining or snowing. Register online for $6; $7 at the door. Call 703-759-9018.

Eco-Savvy Symposium: Cultivating Biodiversity Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) At Green Spring Gardens, learn from renowned public designer Bill McLaughlin of the U.S. Botanic Garden and expert local naturalist and environmental educator Alonso Abugattas how to create a home landscape that provides an oasis for birds, pollinators and other wildlife through the use of native plants. The program from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. costs $56 per person. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

All Things Frozen Tea Party Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) Join a naturalist at Hidden Oaks Nature Center who shares stories about animals that enjoy being chilly and others that just figure out a way to get through the cold. Dress as your favorite frozen friend and enjoy a tea with china cups, treats and crafts. Contact the nature center one week prior with any dietary restrictions. The program from 2 to 3:30 p.m. costs $15 per person. Children under 12 must be accompanied by a registered adult. Call 703-941-1065.

Sunday, February 19

Sidewalk Science & Kitchen Chemistry Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(4-6 yrs.) Join a naturalist at Hidden Oaks Nature Center as she helps your budding scientist unravel some science mysteries in a fun and safe way from 3 to 4 p.m. The cost is $7 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

Winter Tree ID Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(12-Adult) Come to Hidden Oaks Nature Center from 2 to 3:30 p.m. to learn winter tree identification basics and hike to practice new skills. The cost is $6 per person. Call 703-941-1065.

Winter Lecture: Top Ten Plants for Local Gardens Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Horticulturalists Karen Rexrode, Keith Tomlinson of Meadowlark Gardens and Judy Zatsick of Green Spring Gardens share their top ten lists of garden beauties and workhorses that are proven plants for Northern Virginia. This program at Green Spring Gardens runs from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m., and the cost is $10 per person for advance registration or $12 at the door. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

African-Americans at Walney Walking Tour Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(6-Adult) In this interactive walking tour through Ellanor C. Lawrence Park, learn the names and stories of the many African-American families who lived here in slavery and in freedom. The one-hour program begins at 11 a.m. on Saturday and at 2 p.m. on Sunday. The cost is $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Call 703-631-0013.

Monday, February 20

Lakeshore Birding Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(11-Adult) Meet at the Burke Lake marina and walk the lakeshore looking for winter migrants such as common loons and common mergansers from 8 to 10 a.m. Bring binoculars. The cost is $8 per person. Call 703-323-6600.

Fur, Feathers, Scales & Skeletons Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(5-8 yrs.) Through hands-on activities, nature “safari” hikes and visits with live animals, students investigate the scientific classification of the animal kingdom at Hidden Oaks Nature Center during a five-week session. The 55-minute lessons begin at 4:15 p.m., and the cost is $44 per child. For more, call 703-941-1065.

Meet Live Snakes, Turtles and Toads Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(4-Adult) Meet native reptiles and amphibians at Hidden Oaks Nature Center from 1 to 2 p.m. and learn how to identify these species. See at least one animal being fed. The cost is $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. Call 703-941-1065.

Tuesday, February 21

Intro to Telescopes Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(16-Adult) Bring your telescope to Turner Farm Park to learn astronomy and telescope basics. The program from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. costs $8 per person. For more information, call 703-324-8618.

Wednesday, February 22

Homeschool Winter Science Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(6-9 yrs.) Do you know how snowflakes are formed or why ducks are happy in cold water? In this three-week series at Riverbend Park, explore a different seasonal science topic each class. Sessions run from 1 to 3 p.m. The series cost is $51 per child. Call 703-759-9018.

Furry Foxes Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-5 yrs.) These wild members of the dog family are a common sight in our neighborhoods. Come to Hidden Oaks Nature Center to learn about their lives through activities, and practice yipping like a fox. The program from 10 to 10:45 a.m. costs $7 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more, call 703-941-1065.

Friday, February 23

Friday, February 24

Storytelling Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) Bring a snack and enjoy stories about Native American Lore as told by an expert storyteller at Riverbend Park. We’ll start a campfire if the weather cooperates. Meet at the Nature Center. The program from 5 to 6:30 p.m. costs $8 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Call 703-759-9018.

Hot Dog, S’mores! Wagon Ride&Campfire Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-Adult) Roast turkey hot dogs over a campfire and take a brisk wagon ride through Ellanor C. Lawrence Park from 5:30 to 7 p.m. We provide hot dogs, buns, condiments and s’mores. Bring your own drinks and sides. The cost is $10 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. For more, call 703-631-0013.

Saturday, February 25

Birds Around Us Cabell’s Mill Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-Adult) Examine beaks, feathers, nests and talons at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park from 10 to 11 a.m. and learn about bird life cycles, migration patterns and adaptations. The cost is $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Call 703-631-0013.

Storytelling Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) Bring a snack and enjoy stories about the Bootlegging Past as told by one of our expert storytellers at Riverbend Park. We’ll start a campfire if the weather cooperates. Meet at the Nature Center. The program runs from 5 to 6:30 p.m., and the cost is $8 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. For more information, call 703-759-9018.

Homemade Bird FeedersClick to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-Adult) Bring empty milk jugs and/or two liter soda bottles to Ellanor C. Lawrence Park to make bird feeders. Get tips for feeding birds and learn to identify common birds that visit home bird feeders. The program from 11 a.m. to noon costs $7 per person. Dress for the weather and bring binoculars. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Call 703-631-0013.

Starting From Scratch with Seeds Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Grow flowers, vegetables and herbs from seed and expand your garden. Come to Green Spring Gardens and be inspired by propagator and horticulturalist Judy Zatsick as she discusses potting mixes, containers, seed treatments, lighting, fertilization and more. Take some seeds home. The program from 10 to 11:30 a.m. costs $22 per person. Call 703-642-5173.

Crystallized Flower Workshop Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Come to the Historic House at Green Spring Gardens and learn to crystallize edible blooms to use as beautiful and easy garnishes. Take home your candied flowers along with decorating ideas and tips. The program runs from 10 to 11:30 a.m. and costs $27. Call 703-642-5173.

Dr. Seuss’ Birthday Extravaganza Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(4-Adult) At Hidden Oaks Nature Center, hear tales of “Yertle the Turtle” and “Gertrude McFuzz,” meet live animals and make crafts from 2 to 3:30 p.m. The cost is $7 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. Call 703-941-1065.

Winter Birds and Feeder Workshop Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(4-Adult) Learn about birds that call Huntley Meadows and your backyard home in winter. Make a pine cone bird feeder to take home. Learn to identify winter birds through calls, games and activities from noon to 2 p.m. The cost is $8 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Call 703-768-2525.

Evening Woodcock Walk Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Take an evening stroll through the forest to one of Huntley Meadows’ largest meadows. We’ll listen for the call of the male woodcock and hopefully see his amazing courtship dance and flight. Bring a flashlight. The approximately 1.5-mile walk is on uneven terrain, and the program will be canceled if it rains. It runs from 5:30 to 7 p.m., and the cost is $7 per person. For more information, call 703-768-2525.

Sketch Hike: Winter Trees and Landscapes Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(12-Adult) Join Huntley Meadows Park naturalist and artist Margaret Wohler for a hike, and learn sketching techniques to enhance your observation skills. The program from 10 a.m. to noon costs $8 per person. Call 703-768-2525.

Sunday, February 26

Orienteering Workshop Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(8-Adult) Come to Burke Lake Park from noon to 2 p.m. and learn how to use a compass, read a topographic map and navigate orienteering courses. The cost is $25 per person. A compass is required. Call 703-323-6600.

Geocaching Workshop Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(8-Adult) Learn how to enter latitude and longitude coordinates into a GPS and follow the coordinates to find a hidden object, container or unique geological feature at Burke Lake Park from 2 to 4 p.m. Bring your own GPS; a limited number will be available to borrow at class. The cost is $25 per person. Call 703-323-6600.

Fairy Tale Tea Time Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(4-Adult) Fairy tales come to life as you sip tea and enjoy treats surrounded by your favorite fairytale characters at Hidden Oaks Nature Center. Dress as your favorite character, learn how fairy tales have stood the test of time, and find out why so many fairy tales include our animal friends. The program from 2 to 3:30 p.m. costs $15 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Call 703-941-1065.

Winter Lecture: Coping with Deer Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Garden expert Ruth Clausen shares some beautiful shrubs, annuals and perennials that deer seldom browse. Come to Green Spring Gardens and get design tips and plant combinations for your deer-resistant garden. A book signing follows the lecture. This program from1:30 to 2:30 p.m. costs $10 per person for advance registration or $12 at the door. Call 703-642-5173.

Flying Squirrels: Gliding in Tonight Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(4-Adult) Join a naturalist calling in these amazing gliders of the night and look for flying squirrels at roosting boxes near the Nature Center at Hidden Oaks. Learn how you can encourage flying squirrels to visit your yard. The program from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. costs $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. Call 703-941-1065.

Birding for Beginners: Winter Birds Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(12-Adult) Interested in winter birding? Come to Huntley Meadows Park to learn about winter birds in the park and acquire some basic identification skills. The program from 8 to 11 a.m. ends with an indoor discussion. The cost is $10 per person, and children age 12 to 16 must be accompanied by a registered adult. For more information, call 703-768-2525.

Monday, February 27

Little Acorns-Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-4 yrs.) Preschoolers and their accompanying adult share nature’s wonders in this interactive class at Hidden Oaks Nature Center with finger plays, stories, activities and outdoor exploration. Sessions run from 9:45 to 10:30 a.m. and from 11 to 11:45 a.m. Topics vary: 2/6 Animal Valentines; 2/13 Walk, Waddle and Wiggle; 2/27 Polar Animals. The cost for each session is $6 per child. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

Wednesday, February 28

Thursday, February 29

Friday, February 30

Saturday, February 31

Wednesday, March 1

History Tots-Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(1-3 yrs.) Bring your toddler to Ellanor C. Lawrence Park to explore history through sight, sound, smell and touch with indoor and outdoor activities. Topics vary with the seasons. The topic in March is planting. Programs run from 9:45 to 10:30 a.m. and from 11 to 11:45 a.m. The cost is $6 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult who can participate in the program. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

Penguins and Polar Bears Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-5 yrs.) Why do penguins and polar bears never meet? How does a penguin keep its eggs warm? Through activities at Hidden Oaks Nature Center from 10 to 10:45 a.m., learn more about these creatures of the ice and their chilly environment. The cost is $6 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

Monday, March 2

Friday, March 3

Garden Talks with Master Gardeners: Kitchen Garden Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(16-Adult) Learn how to plan, plant and grow your food in an environmentally friendly way at Green Spring Gardens. Master gardeners show you how to get the most out of your spring kitchen garden and enjoy home-grown vegetables before the heat of the summer. The cost of this program from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. is $10 per person. For more, call 703-642-5173.

Saturday, March 4

Family Woodcock Walk Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(8-Adult) Come for an evening walk through the woods at Huntley Meadows to one of the park’s largest meadows. Listen for the call of the male woodcock and hopefully see his amazing courtship display and flight. Bring a flashlight. The approximately 1.5-mile walk is on uneven terrain. This program will be held from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on March 4 and from 6:45 to 8:15 p.m. on March 18. The programs will be canceled if it rains. The cost is $7 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more, call 703-768-2525.

Salamander Excursion Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(8-Adult) Meet at Elizabeth Furnace in Front Royal, Virginia, and witness the first signs of spring by observing the Jefferson salamander, spotted salamanders and red spotted newts breeding in vernal pools. Visit a real fossil wall and climb wood stock tower. Bring flashlights and your dinner to cook on a grill. Dress for the weather. The five-hour event begins at 3:30 p.m. The cost is $45 for a family or $20 for an individual. Please be sure to register for the listing with the appropriate fee for you. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

Watercolor Workshop: Painting Orchids Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Orchids just scream to be painted in watercolors, and botanical artist Dawn Flores shows you the way at Green Spring Gardens. Lessons focus on color, orchid anatomy, techniques and transfer practices so you can successfully compose and paint your own watercolor orchids regardless of your skill level. Bring your own specimens or work from photographs. The supply list will be provided before class. Bring a lunch. The workshop is from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The cost is $88 per person. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

Cocoa and Craft in the Park Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-12 yrs.) Stay and play for 20 minutes or more as you sip cocoa and create up to three crafts at Hidden Oaks Nature Center between the hours of 1 and 3 p.m. There are new craft kits each month. The cost is $6 per child. Children younger than 10 must be accompanied and assisted by an adult. For more information about the program, call 703-941-1065.

Winter Tree ID Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(12-Adult) Do you know your sweet gum from your hickory? Come learn winter tree identification basics at Huntley Meadows Park and go for a hike to practice new skills. The program from noon to 2 p.m. costs $8 per person. For more information, call 703-768-2525.

Garden Design: Landscape Rejuvenation Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) You know it and the neighbors know it, too. Your home landscape has gotten overgrown and needs an upgrade. At Green Spring Gardens, horticulturalist Karen Rexrode will lead you through the fundamental principles of garden design to help you visualize and then realize a beautiful, well-planned landscape. The one-hour program begins at 10 a.m. The cost is $16 per person. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

Sunday, March 5

Winter Lecture: Authentic Garden StyleClick to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Since America is a comparatively young nation, it hasn’t had much time to develop an authentic, indigenous garden style. American gardeners have turned to other national traditions for inspiration, and this piecemeal, stylistic borrowing has led to gardens that bear no relationship to local landscapes and history. At Green Spring Gardens, Claire Sawyers will show you how to create gardens that are both deeply rooted in their surroundings and deeply satisfying to us, their creators. The one-hour program begins at 1:30 p.m. The cost is $10 per person for advance registration or $12 at the door. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

Maple Syrup Boil-Down
(3-Adult) The sap is rising at Colvin Run Mill and the maple trees are tapped. Now it’s sugaring time! Bundle up, brave the weather, watch and learn as sap is boiled down into sweet syrup over an open fire from noon to 2 p.m. Sample the delicious combination of maple syrup over fresh baked cornbread while the supply lasts. This is an outdoor program, so please dress appropriately. The cost is $5 per person. No reservations are required. Call 703-759-2771.

The Invention of Shopping
(Adults) At Historic Green Spring, explore the changing face of shopping through the ages, from market stalls and fairs to arcades and department stores. Learn about the innovations that helped us shop for necessities, status, and therapy as we discuss the fascinating history of counter culture from 1 to 3 p.m. The program includes a traditional English tea, and the cost is $32 per person. Reservations are required. For more information, call 703-941-7987.

Jane Austen Tea Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(8-Adult) A little bit of Jane, a spot of tea and a bit of food all make for a fun and relaxing afternoon at Sully Historic Site. What is your favorite novel and how would you describe it to a friend? Come share with others from 1 to 3 p.m. The cost is $28 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more, call 703-437-1794.

Speak for the Trees Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-12 yrs.) Celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday with a reading of “The Lorax.” Make a Lorax craft and learn how trees help people. The program from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park costs $8 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

Flying Squirrels: Gliding in Tonight Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(4-Adult) Join a naturalist calling in these amazing gliders of the night and look for flying squirrels at roosting boxes near the nature center at Hidden Oaks. Learn how you can encourage flying squirrels to visit your yard. The program from 6:45 to 7:45 p.m. costs $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

Monday, March 6

Little Acorns-Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-3 yrs.) Preschoolers and their accompanying adult begin sharing nature’s wonders in this interactive class at Hidden Oaks Nature Center. Experiences include finger play, stories, activities and, weather permitting, an outdoor exploration. Dress for the weather. Quiet younger siblings are welcome. Sessions run from 9:45 to 10:30 a.m. and from 11 to 11:45 a.m. Topics vary: 3 /6 Twinkle Little Star; 3/13 Green is Great; 3/20 Tales of Tails. The cost for each session is $6 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, about the program, call 703-941-1065.

Little Hands on the Farm: Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-5 yrs.) Join us for fun in the visitor center classroom at Frying Pan Park this season and learn about animals, farm chores, and how farm life is different in winter. Children enjoy activities such as stories, crafts or games. The program for children age two and three runs from 9:45 to 10:30 a.m. The program for children age three to five runs from 11 to 11:45 a.m. The cost is $10 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-437-9101.

Garden Sprouts: Nature Playgroup Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-6 yrs.) Join our Nature Playgroup at Green Spring Gardens. Your preschooler enjoys nature-themed activities while you meet other playgroup parents one Monday a month. A staff member is on hand to put out nature sensory bins, direct games and activities or lead a garden walk. The topic in March is green. Programs run from 10 to 11:30 a.m. The cost is $6 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

Tuesday, March 7

Wednesday, March 8

Putting the Animals to Bed Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) When evening shadows spread over Kidwell Farm, it is time to put the animals to bed. Bring your flashlight or lantern for this twilight tour at Frying Pan Farm Park, and learn how our farm animals settle down for the night. Dress for the weather. This event runs from 7 to 8 p.m., and the cost is $10 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more, call 703-437-9101.

Nature Tots at Walney Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(1-3 yrs.) Bring your toddler to explore nature through sight, sound, smell and touch at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park. Programs include both indoor and outdoor activities, and the topic in March is signs of spring. Sessions run 9:45 to 10:30 a.m. and 11 to 11:45 a.m. The cost is $6 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult who can participate. For more information about the program, call 703-631-0013.

Thursday, March 9

Putting the Animals to Bed Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) When evening shadows spread over Kidwell Farm, it is time to put the animals to bed. Bring your flashlight or lantern for this twilight tour at Frying Pan Farm Park, and learn how our farm animals settle down for the night. Dress for the weather. This event runs from 7 to 8 p.m., and the cost is $10 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more, call 703-437-9101.

Kids’ Korner-Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-6 yrs.) Preschool children explore nature or history once a month at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park, accompanied by an adult. An outdoor activity and craft are included. Topics vary. The topic in March is apples. The program from 1 to 1:45 p.m. costs $6 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

Friday, March 10

StorytellingClick to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) Bring a snack and enjoy stories about Winter’s Wrath as told by one of our expert storytellers at Riverbend Park. We’ll start a campfire if the weather cooperates. Meet at the nature center. The program runs from 5 to 6:30 p.m., and the cost is $8 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered for the session. To learn more about the program, call 703-759-9018.

Wood Frogs! Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(8-Adult) Wood frogs are breeding in vernal pools. Come to Ellanor C. Lawrence Park and assist in collecting and releasing frogs and recording data for our amphibian survey. Wear waterproof boots and bring flashlights. The program from 7 to 8:30 p.m. costs $7 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

Animal Pajama Party Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-6 yrs.) Put on your pajamas and come to the nature center at Hidden Oaks to hear bedtime stories, meet animals and wish goodnight to the center’s live animals. Bring your favorite stuffed animal with you! The 45-minute program begins at 7 p.m., and the cost is $6 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

Family Owl Outing Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(6-Adult) Discover the secret world of owls! Come to Huntley Meadows Park and learn what makes these raptors excellent predators of the night. The presentation is followed by a hike on the trail to hopefully hear or spot one of Huntley’s resident owls. The program runs from 5:45 to 7:15 p.m. The cost is $7 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more information about the program, call 703-768-2525.

Saturday, March 11

Evening Woodcock Walk Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Take an evening stroll through the forest to one of Huntley Meadows’ largest meadows. We’ll listen for the call of the male woodcock and hopefully see his amazing courtship dance and flight. Bring a flashlight. The approximately 1.5-mile walk is on uneven terrain, and the program will be canceled if it rains. The program runs from 5:45 to 7:15 p.m. and the cost is $7 per person. For more information about the walk, call 703-768-2525.

Japanese Teas at Cherry Blossom Time!
(16-Adult) Matcha may be the current tea trend, but Japan has many other traditional teas. Come to Colvin Run Mill and taste a varied selection of this ancient beverage in the cup and as an ingredient. Take home a special Cherry Blossom Blend tea sampler. This program will be presented by certified tea specialist Chef Laurie Bell of Great Falls Tea Garden from 1 to 3 p.m. The cost is $35 per person, and pre-paid reservations are required by March 8. For more information, call 703-759-2771.

Women of Walney Walking Tour Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(6-Adult) From the Brown family in the 1740s until Ellanor C. Lawrence in the 1970s, women have defined the cultural history of Ellanor C. Lawrence Park. In this walking tour, hike around the park, learning about the women who lived on our land, and how their lives and work helped shape our land. The one-hour program begins at 2 p.m. on Saturday and at 11 a.m. on Sunday. The cost is $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more, call 703-631-0013.

Feeding Day! Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-Adult) Join a naturalist and youth volunteers at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park as we demonstrate how we feed our site display animals. Make a birdfeeder to take home and use. Search for worms and insects and assist in serving dinner. The program from 10 to 11 a.m. costs $7 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

Barred Owls Campfire Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-Adult) Enjoy an evening hike and campfire at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park from 7 to 8:30 p.m. to learn about owls. Meet our resident barred owl, and then return to a warm campfire to roast marshmallows. Meet at Cabell’s Mill. The cost is $10 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

Garden Program: Great Woody Plants Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Curatorial Horticulturalist Brenda Skarphol highlights beautiful flowering shrubs at Green Spring Gardens that grow well in Virginia home gardens. Get to know seasonal standouts for winter and spring. Learn the culture and care of these beauties and how to best showcase them in your garden. The program from 10 to 11:30 a.m. is held inside and outdoors. The cost is $18 per person. For more information about this event, call 703-642-5173.

Astronomy Campfire Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(4-Adult) Enjoy a campfire at Hidden Oaks Nature Center and learn what ancient cultures saw in the stars. Make s’mores over the embers after hearing tales of the constellations. The program runs from 7 to 8 p.m., and the cost is $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

Festival of Owls Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(4-Adult) Meet local live owls up close and personal at Huntley Meadows Park! Learn how these raptors live, hunt, and survive. Touch real owl feathers and bones, dissect owl pellets, make an owl craft and learn how you can help protect owls. The program from noon to 2 p.m. costs $9 per person. For an additional cost, you can purchase an owl pellet to dissect with the aid of a naturalist. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. For more, call 703-768-2525.

Sunday, March 12

Orienteering Workshop Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(8-Adult) Orienteering is the sport of navigation with map and compass. It’s easy to learn, but always challenging. Come to Burke Lake Park from noon to 2 p.m. and learn how to use a compass, read a topographic map and navigate orienteering courses. The cost is $25 per person. A compass is required. Call 703-323-6600.

Geocaching Workshop Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(8-Adult) Students learn to use hand-held GPS (Global Positioning System) units to locate hidden treasure caches within Burke Lake Park from 2 to 4 p.m. After learning how to enter latitude and longitude coordinates into a GPS, students follow the coordinates to find a hidden object, container or unique geological feature. Bring your own GPS; a limited number will be available to borrow from the instructor at class. The cost is $25 per person. For more information, call 703-323-6600.

Winter Lecture: Glasshouses & Conservatories Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Green Spring Gardens is completing much-needed renovations to its garden glasshouse thanks to generous support from the Friends of Green Spring and grant funds. Celebrate the reopening of this popular garden oasis with coffee, refreshments and a talk on the history of greenhouses and conservatories by Mount Vernon’s head of horticulture, Dean Norton. Norton shares the genesis of these plant sanctuaries and introduces you to interesting characters behind their popularity. This event from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. costs $10 per person for advance registration or $12 at the door. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

Trees are Terrific Campfire Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-Adult) Enjoy s’mores around the campfire and learn how trees make Ellanor C. Lawrence a special place. Work up an appetite with a short hike with expert naturalist Jim Dewing to search for the biggest, oldest and most important trees in our forest. The program from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. costs $8 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more, call 703-631-0013.

Full Moon Nature Hike & Campfire Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(6-Adult) Enjoy nature’s tranquil beauty and winter’s bright skies under the full moon at Hidden Oaks Nature Center. A naturalist guide points out signs of creatures that glide, fly and tiptoe through the woods in the dark. Enjoy a campfire after the hike with s’mores provided. The program from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. costs $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

Live Animal Lunchtime! Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-Adult) Bring your lunch to Huntley Meadows Park and dine with a special animal guest -- a snake, turtle, or toad. Learn about its diet, adaptations and habitat through crafts and hands-on learning for adults and children. Dessert is our treat. The program from noon to 1 p.m. costs $7 per person. Children younger than 16 must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more information about the lunch, call 703-768-2525.

Monday, March 13

Little Acorns-Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-3 yrs.) Preschoolers and their accompanying adult begin sharing nature’s wonders in this interactive class at Hidden Oaks Nature Center. Experiences include finger play, stories, activities and, weather permitting, an outdoor exploration. Dress for the weather. Quiet younger siblings are welcome. Sessions run from 9:45 to 10:30 a.m. and from 11 to 11:45 a.m. Topics vary: 3 /6 Twinkle Little Star; 3/13 Green is Great; 3/20 Tales of Tails. The cost for each session is $6 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, about the program, call 703-941-1065.

Tuesday, March 14

Putting the Animals to Bed Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) When evening shadows spread over Kidwell Farm, it is time to put the animals to bed. Bring your flashlight or lantern for this twilight tour at Frying Pan Farm Park, and learn how our farm animals settle down for the night. Dress for the weather. This event runs from 7 to 8 p.m., and the cost is $10 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more, call 703-437-9101.

Wednesday, March 15

Toddler Time - Terrific Turtles Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-3 yrs.) Explore nature through outdoor activities and meet one of our turtles at Hidden Oaks Nature Center. The program from 10 to 10:45 a.m. costs $7 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

Thursday, March 16

Putting the Animals to BedClick to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) When evening shadows spread over Kidwell Farm, it is time to put the animals to bed. Bring your flashlight or lantern for this twilight tour at Frying Pan Farm Park, and learn how our farm animals settle down for the night. Dress for the weather. This event runs from 7 to 8 p.m., and the cost is $10 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more, call 703-437-9101.

Friday, March 17

Garden Talks with Master Gardeners: Spring Garden Kickoff Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Shake the winter blahs and exercise those gardening muscles with some spring garden maintenance. At Green Spring Gardens, learn tips for your lawn and garden from Master Gardeners, including best practices for selecting plants and starting seedlings. The cost for this program from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. is $10 per person. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

Storytelling Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) Bring a snack and enjoy stories about Ancient Times as told by one of our expert storytellers at Riverbend Park. We’ll start a campfire if the weather cooperates. Meet at the nature center. The program runs from 5 to 6:30 p.m., and the cost is $8 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. Call 703-759-9018 for more information.

Lake Shore Campfire Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-Adult) Enjoy a campfire by the shore of Burke Lake from 6 to 7 p.m. Listen for all of the animals that come out at night while enjoying s’mores. The program meets at Shelter C, and the cost is $7 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more information, call 703-323-6600.

Wear Green Campfire Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-Adult) Meet at Cabell’s Mill wearing your brightest green this Saint Patrick’s Day and help find all things wearing green in the meadow at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park. Return to a campfire to toast marshmallows. The program from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. costs $8 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more, call 703-631-0013.

Campfire Fridays: Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) Come out for a night of campfire, s’mores, animals, and more at Hidden Pond Nature Center each month. Every program from 6:30 to 8 p.m. features a different topic and visits to different areas of the park. The cost of each program is $8 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more, call 703-451-9588.

Saturday, March 18

Family Woodcock Walk Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(8-Adult) Come for an evening walk through the woods at Huntley Meadows to one of the park’s largest meadows. Listen for the call of the male woodcock and hopefully see his amazing courtship display and flight. Bring a flashlight. The approximately 1.5-mile walk is on uneven terrain. This program will be held from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on March 4 and from 6:45 to 8:15 p.m. on March 18. The programs will be canceled if it rains. The cost is $7 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more, call 703-768-2525.

Afternoon Innovators Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(7-12 yrs.) Did you know that James Machen, the owner of what is now Ellanor C. Lawrence Park, held patents for farming technology? In this program, learn about the many ways the Machens used technology to make their lives easier. Hear from a historian and make prototypes to solve today’s challenges using technology. The program from 2 to 3:30 p.m. costs $10 per person. Call 703-631-0013.

Unplug at the Park Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-Adult) Leave the tech behind and connect with the great outdoors to search for birds and mammals at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park. Dress for the weather in comfortable walking shoes. We’ll mostly be outside from 1 to 2 p.m. The cost is $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Call 703-631-0013.

Floral Design: A Breath of Spring Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(16-Adult) Chase away winter gray with a lovely spring flower arrangement to add color to your home. At Green Spring Gardens, Chuck Mason leads you through a spring flower project to take home and teaches you how to handle cut bulbs in flower arrangements. Please register for both the program and supply fee. The program runs from 2 to 3:30 p.m. The cost is $38 per person, plus a $25 supply fee. Call 703-642-5173.

To Build a Fire Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(10-Adult) Learn the science and art of building a fire at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park, and then test your skill with primitive fire bows and modern fire-making techniques. Use your new skills to toast some s’mores. The program from 5:30 to 7 p.m. costs $10 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more, call 703-631-0013.

Green is Great Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-8 yrs.) Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day by learning about plants and animals that are green. Go on a green treasure hunt, paint with shades of green, and meet Olive, a green turtle, at Hidden Oaks Nature Center from 1:30 to 2:15 p.m. The cost is $6 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information about the program call 703-941-1065.

Astronomy for Family Fun: Moon Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(6-Adult) Learn about the moon and enjoy fun activities and crafts that will help demystify the moon and “bring it down to earth.” This program at Observatory Park at Turner Farm runs from 6 to 8 p.m. and costs $8 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more information about astronomy programs, call 571-214-7891.

Sunday, March 19

Women of Walney Walking Tour Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(6-Adult) From the Brown family in the 1740s until Ellanor C. Lawrence in the 1970s, women have defined the cultural history of Ellanor C. Lawrence Park. In this walking tour, hike around the park, learning about the women who lived on our land, and how their lives and work helped shape our land. The one-hour program begins at 2 p.m. on Saturday and at 11 a.m. on Sunday. The cost is $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more, call 703-631-0013.

The Shapely Story of the Corset
(Adults) Bone up on the fascinating history of the corset, an indispensable element of fashionable dress for more than 400 years. From 1 to 3:30 p.m. at Historic Green Spring, antique clothing collector Caroline Hottenstein presents the controversies surrounding the much-maligned foundation garment and showcases its construction with corsets from her collection. A traditional English tea will be served. The cost is $45 for the program and tea; $18 for the program only. Reservations are required. For more information, call 703-941-7987.

Alice in Wonderland Tea Party Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(5-Adult) Parents and children sip tea, enjoy butterfly-shaped sandwiches and join the crazy fun of Alice in Wonderland’s Mad Hatter and his friends at the strangest of tea parties. During this program at Hidden Oaks Nature Center from 2 to 3:30 p.m., meet a live creature from the story. The cost is $15 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more information about the program, call 703-941-1065.

Monday, March 20

Little Acorns-Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-3 yrs.) Preschoolers and their accompanying adult begin sharing nature’s wonders in this interactive class at Hidden Oaks Nature Center. Experiences include finger play, stories, activities and, weather permitting, an outdoor exploration. Dress for the weather. Quiet younger siblings are welcome. Sessions run from 9:45 to 10:30 a.m. and from 11 to 11:45 a.m. Topics vary: 3 /6 Twinkle Little Star; 3/13 Green is Great; 3/20 Tales of Tails. The cost for each session is $6 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, about the program, call 703-941-1065.

Little Hands on the Farm: Winter Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-5 yrs.) Join us for fun in the visitor center classroom at Frying Pan Park this season and learn about animals, farm chores, and how farm life is different in winter. Children enjoy activities such as stories, crafts or games. The program for children age two and three runs from 9:45 to 10:30 a.m. The program for children age three to five runs from 11 to 11:45 a.m. The cost is $10 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-437-9101.

Taux Trail for Homeschool Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(6-12 yrs.) Students spend two hours immersed in the life of Virginia Indians 400 years ago as they learn to grind corn, make a clay pot, master corn darts and participate in other activities at Huntley Meadows Park from 1 to 3 p.m. The cost is $12 per child. For more information about the program, call 703-768-2525.

Tuesday, March 21

Spring Warblers Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(8-Adult) Walk with a naturalist from 8 to 10 a.m. in search of early spring migrating warblers at Burke Lake Park. Bring binoculars and dress for the weather. Meet at the marina. The cost is $8 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Call 703-323-6600.

Wednesday, March 22

Thursday, March 23

Junior Farmer Fun Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-12 yrs.) This family program goes behind the scenes to help the farmers at Frying Pan Farm Park. Come help with chores, such as milking the cows and collecting eggs, and play old-fashioned games from 4 to 5 p.m. The cost is $7 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-437-9101.

Friday, March 24

Winter Crafts at Sully Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(8-12 yrs.) Drop your child off for a fun afternoon of arts and crafts in an historic setting at Sully Historic Site. Children make crafts reminiscent of the past and enjoy hot cider from 1 to 3 p.m. The cost is $8 per child. For more information about the program, call 703-437-1794.

Amphibians After Dark Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(8-Adult) Assist park naturalists with a calling amphibian survey at Burke Lake Park. Learn how to identify frogs and toads by their calls as we explore pools and ponds from 7 to 8 p.m. The cost is $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more information, about the survey, call 703-323-6600.

Hot Dog, S’mores! Wagon Ride & Campfire Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-Adult) Enjoy a turkey hot dog supper roasted over the campfire and a brisk wagon ride through the Rocky Run stream valley at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park. Discover who Ellanor C. Lawrence was and learn about the area’s local and natural history from 5:30 to 7 p.m. We provide hot dogs, buns, condiments and s’mores. Feel free to bring your own drinks and sides. The cost is $10 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. Meet at Cabell’s Mill. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

Forest Friends Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-6 yrs.) Who is in the forest? Scan the trees and roll over logs to search for forest critters at Hidden Oaks Nature Center. Meet live animals and create a salamander craft from 10 to 10:45 a.m. The cost is $7 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

Campfire Friday - Spring Changes Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) The seasons are changing. Join the naturalists at Riverbend Park and embark on an exploration of the park in a search for signs of spring. Finish up the evening with a campfire and s’mores. This event from 6 to 7 p.m. costs $6 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program. For more information, call 703-759-9018.

Saturday, March 25

Spring Awakening Sketch Walk Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(12-Adult) Celebrate spring by learning to spot early bright signs of seasonal change and learning how to draw outdoors. At Huntley Meadows Park, read sections of “The Forest Unseen” by David George Haskell and take a 1.5-mile walk to the wetland. The program from 10 a.m. to noon costs $8 per person. Drawing materials are included in the cost, courtesy of the RunningBrooke Fund. For more information, call 703-768-2525.

Summer Campler Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) Get ready for summer camp this spring at Frying Pan Park with this free event. Try out activities featured in our brand new Adventure Camps and Farm Tech Camp. Also get a sneak peek at activities from our classic camps, such as Farm Zoology and Farm Hand Camp. After sampling this program, stop by the visitor center to sign up for our camps and secure your spot for summer. This summer camp sampler program runs from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Call 703-437-9101.

Garden Program: Can’t Fail Containers Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Washington Gardener Editor/Publisher Kathy Jentz shares tips at Green Spring Gardens on how you can grow beautiful garden containers. Learn what soil types to use, hear pros and cons of different containers, and get to know plants that perform well in our region. We show you the basics and go into the details of growing ornamental and edible containers while showing you styles and fashions in container gardening. The program runs 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. The cost is $15 per person. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

Workshop: Kokedama String Gardens Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(16-Adult) Learn the hot new trend in gardening: the Japanese art of Kokedama string gardens. Come to Green Spring Gardens as Green Spring’s own horticulturalist and trend setter Nancy Olney leads you through crafting and planting these hanging moss globes that will wow your friends. Materials, plants, and care instructions included. The workshop runs from 9:30 to 11 a.m., and the cost is $35 per person. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

Family Fun: Women’s History Tea Party Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(5-Adult) Women have played an important role in the history of Green Spring Gardens -- from women settlers, to a famous landscape architect, to the women who currently design the gardens. Celebrate Women’s History Month at Green Spring Gardens with a family tea party. Get a close look at the Historic House and some special gardens, which would not be here without some important Green Spring women. This tea program for children and families runs from 1 to 2:30 p.m., and the cost is $15 per person. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

Build Your Own Bee House Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) Come to Riverbend Park and have fun learning about local pollinators. You’ll use some invasive plants to build homes for these native pollinators. The bees this house will attract are mason bees, pollinators and solitary bees, which rarely sting. The program from 10 to 11 a.m. costs $8 per person. For more information about the workshop, call 703-759-9018.

Powhatan’s People Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) The Virginia Indians profoundly affected our history. In this program at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park, discover some elements of the Algonquian culture of the Powhatans and Tauxenent such as crafting stone tools, hunting, and farming. Play a game and enjoy a campfire. The program from 2:30 to 4 p.m. costs $8 per person. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

Evening Woodcock Walk Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Take an evening stroll through the forest to one of Huntley Meadow’s largest meadows. We listen for the call of the male woodcock and hopefully see his amazing courtship dance and flight. The program runs from 6:45 to 8:15 p.m. and includes an approximately 1.5-mile walk on uneven terrain. The walk will be canceled if it rains. Don’t forget to bring a flashlight. The cost is $7 per person. For more information, call 703-768-2525.

Evening Stroll Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) A naturalist takes you on a relaxing stroll through Huntley Meadows Park at dusk for a tour of the woods and wetlands to watch and listen for beavers, owls and other nocturnal residents. This program from 7 to 9 p.m. costs $8 per person. For more information about the stroll, call 703-768-2525.

Intro to Sundials I Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(16-Adult) Learn about the world’s oldest clocks at Turner Farm Park. Explore the history of sundials and solar alignments from Newgrange to modern to digital sundials. Learn about Pythagoras and the beauty of triangles and proportions which led to basic trigonometry. Use simple trigonometry to draw a horizontal sundial. The class from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. includes a half-hour break. The cost is $18 per person. For more information, call 703-324-8618.

Sunday, March 26

Animal Egg Mobile Workshop Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-12 yrs.) Come to Hidden Pond Nature Center from 2 to 3:30 p.m. and create a spring mobile of your favorite pond animals from plastic eggs. All materials are provided. The cost is $6 per child. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 703-451-9588.

Walney History Dog Walk Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) We have many animals at Walney Visitor Center today, but did you know the past residents of Walney kept animals? In this guided hike at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park, participants and their pets walk the Historic Loop and then from Walney to Middlegate, all the while learning about the animals that lived at Ellanor C. Lawrence in the past. Participants (and their dogs) must be able to walk a half-mile. The guided program from 2 to 3 p.m. costs $6 per person. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

Geocaching Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(6-12 yrs.) Students learn to use hand-held GPS units to locate hidden treasure caches at Lake Fairfax Park. After learning how to enter latitude and longitude coordinates into a GPS, students follow the coordinates to find a hidden object, container or unique geological feature. We visit established caches within the park and find new class-specific caches that are made available only to registered students. This program from 4 to 5 p.m. meets for five weeks. The cost is $69. Bring your own GPS; a limited number are available to borrow from instructor at class. For more information, call 703-471-5414.

Monday, March 27

Science for Homeschoolers Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(6-9 yrs.) At Huntley Meadows Park, students explore marsh, meadow and forest to learn about change patterns, plant characteristics, animal life needs and observation. Basic reading and writing skills are required, and students must be comfortable working in a group. This series of eight classes meets from 1 to 2:55 p.m. The cost is $121 for the series. For more information about this series, call 703-768-2525.

Yoga for Gardeners Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) This class at Green Spring Gardens features a gentle introduction to the Vinyasa method of yoga which helps participants increase the strength, flexibility and endurance necessary for gardening. Sessions will run from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. on Mondays. The 11 classes in this session are held indoors, and the cost of the series is $121 per person. For more information about the program, call 703-642-8252.

History for Small Fries Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(1-5 yrs.) Bring your toddler to Sully Historic Site for a story and craft to discover how things were in the olden days. Through their senses, children can experience how different things smelled, looked or worked from 10 to 11 a.m. The cost is $5 per child. For more information, about this program call 703-437-1794.

Little Acorns- Spring Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-4 yrs.) Preschoolers and their accompanying adult share nature’s wonders in this interactive class at Hidden Oaks Nature Center. Activities include finger plays, stories, and an outdoor exploration, weather permitting. The topic will be mammals. Dress for the weather. Quiet younger siblings welcomed. Sessions run from 9:45 to 10:30 a.m. and from 11 to 11:45 a.m. The cost is $6 per child. For more, call 703-941-1065.

Tuesday, March 28

Family Trivia Tuesdays Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(5-Adult) Join us at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park for family fun, pizza and friendly competition at Cabell’s Mill to see who becomes the Ellanor C. Lawrence trivia champion. Topics vary each month. Register as an individual for $7 or bring a group of four for $22. Trivia time is 7 to 8:30 p.m. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

Animal Feeding at the Nature Center Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-Adult) It’s dinner time at Hidden Pond Nature Center and worms and insects are on the menu. Help our naturalist care for and feed the nature center’s animals from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. The cost is $6 per person. For more, call 703-451-9588.

Intro to Telescopes Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(16-Adult) This class at Observatory Park at Turner Farm covers astronomy basics as well as how to set up and use your telescope. The course content depends on telescope type, so bring your telescope to class. The one-hour program begins at 7:30 p.m., and the cost is $8. For more information, call 703-324-8618.

Wednesday, March 29

Bluebells and Bloodroots Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(Adults) Meet at the visitor center at Riverbend Park and learn to identify Riverbend’s beautiful spring ephemerals. Discover their folklore as we walk along the banks of the Potomac River from 1 to 3 p.m. This event will be canceled if it rains. The cost is $8 per person. Call 703-759-9018.

Science for Homeschoolers Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(9-12 yrs.) At Huntley Meadows Park, students investigate the interrelation between earth cycles, ecosystems, and plant and animal functions and processes at the cell level. They also examine human impact on ecosystem health. Basic reading and writing skills are required, and students must be comfortable working in a group. This series of eight classes meets from 2 to 3:55 p.m. The cost is $121 for the series. For more information, call 703-768-2525.

Science for Homeschoolers Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(12-14 yrs.) This course at Huntley Meadows Park involves lecture with an emphasis on hands-on field work in natural sciences. Learn about aquatic ecosystems, energy and matter in the ecosystems, how humans impact the natural world, and the interactions of living things from microbes to large mammals. Students participate in field work related to soil, biodiversity, plants, animals and wetlands. This series of eight classes meets from 4:30 to 5:55 p.m. The cost is $108 for the series. For more, call 703-768-2525.

Pohick Puddle Jumpers Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(3-7 yrs.) The youngest nature lovers can become part of this season’s exploration of the natural world with hands-on and up-close indoor and outdoor activities at Hidden Pond Nature Center. The program runs from 4:45 to 5:30 p.m. The cost is $6 per child. Call 703-451-9588.

Thursday, March 30

Spring Wildflowers of Scott’s Run Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(13-Adult) Meet at Scott’s Run Nature Preserve and walk the trails from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in search of Dutchman’s breeches and other spring ephemerals in these rich woods. Meet in the west parking lot, and wear sturdy hiking shoes. The hike will be canceled if it rains. The cost is $8 per person. Call 703-759-9018.

Friday, March 31

Riverside Campfire - Night Wings Click to Register with Parktakes Online
(2-Adult) Hoot like an owl, swoop like a bat, and flutter like a moth as we learn about the creatures that fly through our night skies at Riverbend Park. Bring a toasting stick; s’mores are provided. The one-hour program begins at 6 p.m., but come early if you’d like to bring a picnic or hot dogs to toast. The cost is $6 per person. For more information, call 703-759-9018.

Monday, February 1

Tuesday, February 2

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Kirk W. Kincannon Who Says 13 is Unlucky?

While it is often difficult to tell how voters feel about some issues, it’s clear that Fairfax County voters value their parks! The 2016 park bond was the 13th consecutive park bond approved by county voters since the first one back in 1959, and we are grateful for the continued support in assuring great parks and great communities for generations to come. Parks improve the quality of life for everyone, and the voterapproved $94.7 million investment in our county park system will be used to upgrade and improve many of our aging parks and facilities. Park Authority work will include a focus on taking care of what we have in our great park system as well as preserving cultural and natural resources, protecting and preserving open space and building and renovating parks to meet community need in all areas of the county.

Current priorities include renovations and upgrades for trails and bridges, playgrounds, athletic fields and courts, picnic shelters and RECenters, natural resource and ecological restorations, and historic site and building preservation. In addition, system-wide energy management improvements will continue to expand to create a more sustainable park system through the use of new technologies that reduce water and energy consumption. Look for improvements and enhancements at Burke Lake, Lake Accotink, Lee District, Laurel Hill Park and a much-needed renovation and upgrade at Mount Vernon RECenter, which is nearly 40 years old. Other system-wide priorities include improvements to community and neighborhood parks across the county.

The 2016 park bond priorities reflect the wishes of the community – the needs you told us about in surveys, focus groups and public meetings. We are fortunate to live in a community that is willing to make the investment in our award-winning park system, as it has from the Fairfax County Park Authority’s very beginning. On behalf of the Park Authority, thank you for entrusting us with those resources. We pledge to use them wisely to provide you with improved parks and recreation facilities and opportunities for years to come!

Kirk W. Kincannon, CPRP, AAPRA
Executive Director, Fairfax County Park Authority

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



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