Something’s Afoot: 7 Additional Special Programs

Seven opportunities in Nature to augment special motion-themed exhibit

In conjunction with Geauga Park District’s Something’s Afoot: Nature Just Can’t Stay Put motion-themed interactive exhibit at The West Woods Nature Center, come meet a selection of Ohio’s wildlife and see first-hand how feet, fins, and wings help different animals get from one place to another.

“The intention is to maintain the connection between the exhibit theme and the programs conceived to augment it,” said Senior Naturalist Dan Best, who conceived Something’s Afoot. “For instance, snorkeling is not only thrilling and fun, but has a direct link to humans bio-mimicking aquatic creatures such as frogs and ducks to swim.”

August 15: Hop, Jump, Wiggle and Walk
For starters, frogs, toads and salamanders will demonstrate their multiple modes of movement in a series of entertaining “amph-letic” events, followed by an outdoors evening amphibian search, during Amphibian Olympics: Hop, Jump, Wiggle and Walk on Friday, August 15, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at The West Woods Nature Center. (So guests may visit the exhibit before the program, Something’s Afoot is open late tonight till 7 p.m.)

Wood Frog

August 16: Soaring with Eagles: An Introduction to Sailplaning!
As Nature can’t stay put, neither can earthbound humans, whose inventions for travel across sea and sky have been inspired by wildlife anatomy and abilities. As proof, register online or call 440-286-9516 to join the Cleveland Soaring Society on Saturday, August 16, from 1 to 3 p.m. at Geauga County Airport in Middlefield for Soaring with Eagles: An Introduction to Sailplaning! This runway address will explain the design and flight concepts of non-powered aircraft, followed by a sailplane flight demonstration showing how sailplanes are towed aloft and released to ride the rising air – just as eagles, hawks, vultures and other soaring birds use thermals and updrafts to ply the skies.

August 17: Pond Creatures: See How They Swim
Have you ever seen a dragonfly nymph move by jet propulsion, or a leech swim? If not, your opportunity is Sunday, August 17, from 1 to 4 p.m. at The West Woods. Pond Creatures: See How They Swim allows your family to join a naturalist along the Discover Trail to dip nets into the pond and discover the creatures that live there getting around.

dragonfly-nymph

August 21: The Joy of Fishwatching
Bird watching, butterfly watching, and now fish watching – what next?! Think about it: aquariums are popular because moving water relaxes us and fish movement is mesmerizing. Using binoculars – yours or ours – learn to identify minnows, darters, dace, shines and other colorful stream fish during The Joy of Fishwatching on Thursday, August 21, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at Swine Creek Reservation. After observing swimming, schooling, foraging and protective behavior, we’ll net some of the fish we see for more close-up examination.

Swine Creek

August 30: Discover Underwater Life Through Snorkeling
Snorkeling is almost in session again at Walter C. Best Wildlife Preserve! Don’t wait to register for one of four different sessions to Discover Underwater Life Through Snorkeling on Saturday, August 30. A $25 fee includes snorkel instruction by Just Add Water, equipment and wetsuits (or bring your own), plus this unique opportunity to see fish, plants and other aquatic life from an underwater perspective, rain or shine. Registration is required online or call 440-286-9516.

September 3: Migration Sensation
As summer transitions to autumn, birds, bats, butterflies and dragonflies stage migrations through our region – and our backyards. Learn more about this mysterious, sometimes spectacular phenomenon from Senior Naturalist Dan Best during September’s Migration Sensation on Wednesday, September 3, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at The West Woods Nature Center.

September 21: Insect Olympics: Hop, Scamper, Flit and Fly
And finally, naturalists will stick some insects in a variety of viewing containers to display their forms of movement on land and in the air, and provide nets so you can round up some of your own beetles, bugs, butterflies, and more, during Insect Olympics: Hop, Scamper, Flit and Fly on Sunday, September 21, from 2 to 3:30 p.m. at Burton Wetlands Nature Preserve – a fitting end to a summer full of movement and fun.

hunting for a monarch

To explore more about animal movement, be sure to visit the Something’s Afoot exhibit itself, open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and fully wheelchair/stroller accessible. Call 440-286-9516 with questions.

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Geauga News
Author: Geauga News