Monday, June 30, 2014

What The Heck Are We Doing?

We’ve been extremely busy volunteering these last two months. 

During the last two weeks in May we gave interpretive programs to 402 school kids.  Just when we thought we were through with the large groups of kids, we got word that a Girl Scout troop (55 girls) would be in the park and wanted us to to give them a program.

Starting the last full week of May, our “real” volunteer jobs started. We give interpretive programs three evenings a week (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday).  These can take an enormous amount of time to “create”.  It takes Mark a full week to set up a new presentation.  He takes lots of photos and spends many hours putting together a Powerpoint program. 

Some of our programs consists of showing a movie, such as a documentary about bears.  But, there’s more than just showing the movie!  For the bear movie, we bring out the bear furs and skull, various books and Mark starts the program with a 10-15 minute talk about bears. 
A program created by Mark.
These programs start at 8:30 p.m. as it stays light very late.  Luckily we have a very bright projector and are able to start the programs when it is still light outside.  They usually last about 45 minutes.

Two mornings (Saturday and Sunday) we also have interpretive programs.  One is always a Jr. Ranger program that is geared toward kids.  These have been scavenger hunts, owl pellet dissection, and hauling out all the furs and skulls.   
Furs, Skulls, and Deer Antlers
Usually on Sunday mornings we offer a 1 mile hike along one of the “kid friendly” trails here in the park.  There is a lot to see and talk about on this trail and this hike usually takes about 1 1/2 hours.
It is very green here in the park!
We have a lot of fun programs set up for the coming weeks.  A disc golf clinic is on the list.  Have I mentioned that there are 4 disc golf courses in the park?  Three 18-hole courses that are progressively difficult and a 9-hole course that is great for kids and beginners.  The park has a box full of disc for use during the clinic.  If we can catch a full moon at the right time, we plan on having a night hike.  We also want to have programs on staying safe in the woods and a nature scavenger hunt.  It seems like each week we think of other programs we can offer.

We had friends from Texas visit for a week.  Even though it rained the first 3 days, we were able to get out and play tourist.  We went through a couple of museums, something we probably would not have done if it hadn’t been raining.  They turned out to be quite enjoyable.
Bonner’s Ferry Museum
We’re still monitoring our Bluebird houses.  So far we have had about 80 Bluebirds fledge and many Chickadees and Tree Swallows.  Many of our birds have started 2nd nests.
Feed Me!!!
We are already at the half way point in our time here.  We’ve been here 10 weeks and have 10 weeks to go. Time flies when you're having fun!