Monday, September 7, 2009

Natural Happenings: 9/7-9/13

Each week, we list opportunities to get outdoors or learn about nature. Click through to the organization hosting each event for more details -- some events require registration or charge a fee.

This week's highlight: On Sunday, the Sierra Club is leading a 5 mile hike on a new section of the Potomac Heritage Trail in eastern Loudoun County, through Algonkian Regional Park and the adjacent Horsepen Run Preserve. "Excellent views of the Potomac River, and the forests and meadows of a beautiful wildlife sanctuary." Followed by a picnic at Algonkian Park with other folks from the Sierra Club outings group: "Enjoy volleyball/badminton, horseshoes, or watching your dog swim at the park pool. There is a great children’s playground, and a boat launch ramp, so bring you own canoe/kayak for a paddle in the Potomac River...There are also miniature and championship golf courses nearby. We’ll provide hotdogs, hamburgers, veggie burgers, trimmings, bread, chips, and nonalcoholic beverages, along with paper and plastic ware; you may bring appetizers, side dishes, or desserts to share."

Also this week:

Potomac Appalachian Trail Club
Many cabin and trail crew work trips.
Tue: SNP - Thornton Gap and Hollow Highlights (15 mi, 4000 ft ascent)
Wed: Meadowside Nature Center hike (5 mi)

Center Hiking Club
Mon: Lake Frank with both hiking and biking (5-6 mi, from Shady Grove)
Sat: Kent Island in Queen Anne's County (6 mi, from New Carrollton Metro)
Sun: Hoover Camp in SNP (10 mi, from Vienna Metro)

Capital Hiking Club
Sat: Hannah Run Trail/Hazel Country, SNP (6.2-10.2 mi, 2700-3600 ft ascent, bus transport)

Maryland Outdoor Club
Sun: Jug Bay pontoon boat tour and hike

Northern Virginia Hiking Club
Sat: Tuscarora Trail (9 mi)
Sat: Thompson Wildlife Management Area (6.3 mi)
Sun: Hound Hike Around Lake Mercer (4 mi)

Washington Women Outdoors
Sat: Register by Wednesday - Patapsco River Half-Day Hike (5 mi)

Audubon Naturalist Society
Thu eve: Antomology: An Introduction to the Natural History of Backyard Ants
Sat: Spiders 101 at McKee Beshers
Sun: birding at Little Bennett Park, MD
Sun: Geology along Four Mile Run (4 mi hike)
Sun eve: Evening Walk on the Canal

Maryland Native Plant Society
Sun: Plant and Pollinator Photography, Blue Marsh Nature Trail, Montgomery County

Rock Creek Park
Sat: Dumbarton Oaks tour (ages 8+)
Sat: Sneak Peak of Ken Burns' documentary America's Best Idea, about the National Parks
Sat eve: Owl hunt (ages 8+)

United States Botanic Garden
Mon and Thurs: Lunchtime tours of the conservatory
Fri: Victory Gardens: Join the Garden Revolution!
Sat: Tour of the National Garden's native plants of the Mid-Atlantic region

Bladensburg Waterfront Park
Tue-Fri: free tour by pontoon boat at noon
Sat-Sun: free tour by pontoon boat at 5PM

Chesapeake Bay Foundation
Sat: Paddle the Potomac with the Surfrider Foundation from Thompson Boat Center to Key Bridge; pick up trash at Roosevelt Island

Museum of Natural History
see below for kids activities.
Sat: Darwin Anniversary Symposium


Rock Creek Park
Wed: Art in the park - drawing outdoors (ages 10+)
Wed: Pierce Mill walk (ages 5+)
Thu: Nature journal (ages 9+)
Fri: Creature Feature (all ages)
Sat: Dumbarton Oaks tour (ages 8+)
Sat: Sneak Peak of Ken Burns' documentary America's Best Idea, about the National Parks
Sat eve: Owl hunt (ages 8+)
Sun: Ranger-led horseback tour (ages 12+)
Sun: A Bug's Life (ages 5-10)

United States Botanic Garden
Preschool "Sprouts" program, Wednesday mornings - must register for a month at a time. September session starts on this Wednesday. Ages 3-5.

Museum of Natural History
Daily tarantula feedings in the insect zoo and museum tours.
Tue: Hands-on activities in the Dig It! soil exhibit
Wed: Look at specimens or artifacts with a scientist in the Ocean Hall
Sat: Create your own nature bio-journal (Ages 4+)

Like the photos in this post? Mouse over for credits; a click takes you to the photographer on Flickr.