Spring has sprung! It is a wonderful time to experience all of your senses during your visit to Topsail Hill Preserve State Park in April. You will see the snowy plovers foraging for food amongst the dunes. You will hear the ospreys as they soar to their nest. You will smell the wildflowers in bloom, like the coreopsis and fetterbush. You will feel the coolness of shade amongst the longleaf pine trees on the Gopher Tortoise Trail. You will taste the warm, salty breeze when you are on the beach. If you haven’t been to the park in a while, spring is definitely an inspiring time to visit. The wildlife is truly more alive now than any other time of the year and is bound to inspire you to celebrate or even give back!
Each year, the last Saturday of April, is the annual Earth Day Festival at the park. On Saturday, April 27th, 2019 from 10am to 2pm the park will have a festival of fun environmental booths, games and activities to celebrate the Earth. It is a great way to learn from organizations from all over the greater Florida Panhandle area about the environment and the wildlife.
Want to give back and be a part of the change you wish to see in the world? Volunteer by helping clean the beach. The Beach Cleanup will be on April 20th, 9:15am-11:30am. Trash on the beach either attracts predators or ends up in the Gulf of Mexico where it can be eaten by or entangle marine animals. Every piece of trash removed is one less obstacle the shorebirds, sea turtles and marine life have to overcome in their lifetime. Registered volunteers get free park admission on April 20th for the Beach Cleanup. To register call the Ranger Station at the park: 850-267-8330. Can’t make it to the beach cleanup? You can still help by removing trash from the beach each time you visit it. #LeaveNoTrace
There are many educational programs at the park for April. The Topsail Talks series on April 19th features 30A Sea Life Discovery Center’s presentation on Green Sea Turtle Migration and there are always the weekly #SundayFunday Ranger Programs! To add to the fun, there are monthly programs such as: Topsail Under the Stars (April 5), Guided Bird Walk (April 10), Plant Stroll (April 15), and Art in the Park (April 26). This month’s Art in the Park participants are making a beautiful basket which you can see a sample of on Facebook at @FriendsofTopsailHillPreserveStatePark. Remember, Art in the Park is a fundraiser for the non-profit Friends of Topsail Hill Preserve State Park in which anyone can join!
Are you inspired to visit the park yet? No? Then close your eyes. Imagine waking up to a warm and bright sunshiny day with a slight breeze blowing. You change into comfortable clothing, pack a lunch, water and sunscreen. You call friends or family. Or maybe you call no one because you want a “me” day. You head to Topsail Hill Preserve State Park and spend the day at one with nature with no cares in the world. How does that sound? Hope to see you soon!