The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

September 23, 2012

Bob Garrett column: Early goose season ends Tuesday

By Bob Garrett
For The Daily Item

— You and your family can be part of the inaugural “Rivertown Paddle” today.  To honor the 40th anniversary of the Milton State Park the “1st Annual Rivertown Paddle” pushes off at 8:30 a.m. today.  

Actually, folks who are shuttling from Lewisburg need to be at the St. George Street access area by 8:30 a.m. or at the Milton State Park by 9 a.m..  

Everyone will rally at the river access in Watsontown by 9:30 a.m. for a safety briefing, paddling instructions and a quick get-to-know-you session. The paddling will start by 10 a.m..  

A lunch break with presentations is planned for the Milton State Park from 12:30-2 p.m.. The flotilla should arrive in Lewisburg around 3:30 p.m. and the shuttles will return to Milton and Watsontown by 4:30 p.m.  

The cost for this great event is $25 per adult and $15 per child. Canoes and kayak can be rented for the trip. You may visit www.paddlehappy.com or call 524-7692 for more details. All of the proceeds from this event benefit the Friends of Milton State Park.

Wildwood Park is a fairly-large wetland preserve that’s located just north of Harrisburg along US Route 322 and Interstate 81 on the campus of the Harrisburg Area Community College. It’s home to the extremely-rare American Lotus plant.  

From noon to 5 p.m. today, there will a “Celebrate Wildwood” event that encourages everyone to connect with nature while staying fit. There will be a 3-mile walk, run, roll or stroll family-oriented jaunt around the Wildwood Lake. Stations will be set up along the route where the participants can learn about the many natural features of this unique park.

Other planned activities include pumpkin painting, scarecrow stuffing, native plant sales, yoga and trail stretching, hula-hooping and inter-generational activities that will involve grandparents and grandchildren doing wellness-oriented events together.

More information is available at www.wildwoodlake.org or by calling 717-221-0292.

The forest and its ferns is the theme of a 1:30 p.m. presentation at the PPL Susquehanna Riverlands Preserve south of Berwick today. Jim Montgomery, who is a world-renowned forest ferns expert, will lead this in-field presentation.  

As our forests prepare for their long winter’s nap, today would be a great time for you and your family to join Dr. Montgomery and learn more about the wonderful cycles of nature. More information is available at http://pplpreserves.com or by calling 866-832-3312.

You can meet Gerald Putt, of Boiling Springs, who won an unprecedented 10th Pennsylvania Duck Stamp competition today at the Hawk Mountain Sanctuary from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Putt is joining about a dozen other wildlife artists at an art show and sale that is being held at the sanctuary.  

Also today, National Hunting and Fishing Day will be celebrated at the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s Middle Creek Management Area near Kleinfeltersville. Activities at this event go from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and they include archery, muzzleloading, bird dogging, trapping and laser-simulated hunting demonstrations.

There’s a chicken barbecue at the Buffalo Valley Sportsmen’s Club north of Mifflinburg today. Give the club a call at 966-0270 with your order. By the way, don’t forget that one of the last Hunter Safety Courses in our area before the seasons get really rolling is this coming Thursday, Friday and Saturday at the Buffalo Valley Sportsmen. You may register online at www.pgc.state.pa.us or by calling Allen Zimmerman at 966-0173.  

They’re shooting sporting clays this morning at the Kreamer Sportsmen’s Club and at the North Mountain Sportsmen’s.    



Tuesday

Early Canada goose season wraps up on Sept. 25. According to the Game Commission’s waterfowl biologists, the statewide population of Canada geese is down just a bit this year.  The high year for these geese was in 2004 — since then their population numbers have decreased and is getting closer to the goal of 150,000 “resident” Canada geese. This year’s spring census of resident geese was 220,000, so there’s still a ways to go to meet the planned population goal.



Thursday

There’s a sporting clay shoot starting at 5 p.m. at the Orangeville Sportsmen’s Club.

A hunter safety course kicks off at the Buffalo Valley Sportsmen’s Club.



Friday

The cut-off date for elk guide applications is today. If you weren’t lucky enough to actually draw one of the few elk hunting licenses in our state for this year, you can still participate in the hunt as a guide. Guides assist with tracking, calling and spotting eligible elk for the hunters.  

Elk guide permits cost $25 for Pennsylvania residents and $50 for non-residents. You may call 717-783-8164 to obtain a permit application or stop into a regional game commission office.



Next weekend

Let the games begin! Archery season opens statewide on Saturday.

Email comments to garrettoutdoors@gmail.com