Ponca State Park Hosting Recreational Programming Over July 4th Weekend

WAYNE – Ponca State Park is excited to conduct some educational and recreational programs this weekend. They are limited on the number of people that can participate. Therefore, every program must be pre-registered for. Sign up starts at 8 a.m. on the day of the event and closes 30 minutes before the event starts.

There are three programs scheduled for Friday, July 3. At 9-9:45 a.m. or at 10:15-11 a.m. introduction to slingshot will occur. All equipment will be provided and there’s an age limit of five. The cost is $3 per shooter. Participants will meet at the Eric Wiebe Shooting Complex. At 1-1:45 p.m. or at 2:15-3 p.m. people can learn about butterflies from a naturalist. Participants will make magnets. This is recommended for ages seven and up. Meet at the West Shelter for this free event. From 4:30-5:15 p.m. or from 5:45-6:30 p.m. you can learn about campfire cooking. Participants will learn how to make s’mores, campfire toast, popcorn, food on a stick, and much more. The cost is $3 per kit. Meet at the West Shelter for this event.  Pre-register and pay at the Resource and Education Center for all events. Limited spots are available for every program.

Saturday, July 4th, is Independence Day and Ponca State Park has many programs prepared for our nation’s birthday. At the same times as Friday, introduction to slingshot will be offered. The same rules and prices apply. At 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m. or at 12:45-1:30 p.m. learn about fish and other wildlife along the Missouri River with the Critter Corner program. Participants will be able to see and sometimes smell live critters, furs, feathers, shells, and skulls. Meet near the pollinator garden on the east side of the Resource and Education Center for this free event. From 1-1:45 p.m. and from 2:15-3 p.m. people can learn about the moon phases through Oreo cookies. This is recommended for ages five and up and costs $3 per craft. Meet at the West Shelter for this program. From 3-3:45 p.m. and from 4:15-5 p.m. there will be a firework program for all those junior scientists out there. Participants can see how three ingredients combine, dissolve, and then create a tiny explosion. This free event will meet near the pollinator garden on the east side of the Resource and Education Center and is recommended for ages five and up. All above events can be pre-registered and paid for at the Resource and Education Center with limited spots available.

There are two events scheduled for Sunday, July 5th. From 9-9:45 a.m. and from 10:15-11 a.m. there will be an introduction to tomahawk program. All equipment will be provided and participants must be eight years or older. Pre-register and pay for this $3 per shooter event at the Resource and Education Center. There are limited spots available. Meet at the Eric Wiebe Shooting Complex. Also, on Sunday, form 10-11 a.m. and from 1-2 p.m. learn how to use scat to identify animals and their food. Pick up materials at the Activity Shed on the northwest corner of the Resource and Education Center. This recommended for ages 7-13, while supplies last.

Finally, don’t forget about Mr. Sasquatch. The park staff has seen signs of the eight-foot tall beast. Each week Sasquatch is hiding in a different place. If you find him, take a selfie using #SasquatchSelfieChallenge. Share photos on Facebook or by email at ngpc.ponca@nebraska.gov.

Ponca State Park asks that visitors recreate responsibly. Their ability to keep the park open is contingent upon people’s compliance with social distancing and group size guidelines. More information can be found at www.outdoornebraska.gov/healthinfo/.

For additional activities and other information visit the Ponca State Park Facebook page. For questions, call 402-755-2284.

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