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Outdoors & Environmental Newsletter | March 2010 | VBgov.com/Parks
Osprey Return to Virginia Beach
OspreyThe osprey, also known as the "fish hawk," is returning to Virginia Beach from its winter migration south. This large bird of prey is a most abundant seasonal resident who can be seen fishing along the beaches (from Chicks Beach to Little Island Park) and inland waters.  Last year on a kayak trip in Crab Creek, we saw at least ten fishing in one area!
Pairs often return to the same nest year after year; these nests are made of sticks and can be up to 5 feet in diameter and weigh almost 400 pounds. Check out a nest at one of the following locations:
  • above Northhampton Blvd. on an electrical pole across from Lake Smith,
  • on a ball field light at Bayville Farms Park,
  • and several can be viewed on channel markers as you make your way into Crab Creek from the Lynnhaven Boat Ramp.
Or better yet, join us for one of our upcoming Kayak Tours for your chance at an up-close glimpse at these magnificent creatures! 
Read more about the osprey's return to the bay.
City Cyclists: We Need Your Input!
Riding BikesWe're updating the 2004 Bikeways & Trails Plan that originally identified a continuous, safe, and coordinated system of bikeways and shared use trail facilities. To continue improving the quality of life and connectivity throughout the city, we are seeking public input that will help us enhance the existing Plan and identify any problem areas or issues that have room for improvement. 
You're invited to attend a Public Information Meeting to share your input; each meeting runs from 4:00 pm - 7:00 pm:
  • April 6 at Princess Anne Rec Center, 1400 Nimmo Pkwy
  • April 19 at Creeds Elem. School, 920 Princess Anne Rd.
  • April 29 at Kempsville Rec Center, 800 Monmouth Ln.
For more information, please contact Wayne Wilcox at (757) 385-1104, or email at wwilcox@VBgov.com.
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Upcoming Programs & Events!
Mar 27 | Cherry Blossom Festival | Red Wing Park | Free
Apr 2 | Friday Night Family Hike | West Neck Creek Natural Area | $3*
Apr 17 | Owl Prowl | West Neck Creek Natural Area | Free*
Apr 22 | Kayak Fishing | Lynnhaven Boat Ramp/Beach | $16*
Apr 23 | Star Party | Mount Trasmore Park | Free
May 1 | American Indian Pow Wow | Mount Trashmore Park | Free
May 2 | Earth Day | Mount Trashmore Park | Free
May 10 | Kayak Tour | Lake Smith | $12*
May 15 | Owl Prowl | Stumpy Lake Natural Area | Free*
May 20 | Kayak Fishing | Lake Smith | $16*
May 21 | Campfire Cooking | Bayville Farms Park | $17*
May 24 | Kayak Tour | Carolanne Farms Park | $12*
Jun 5 | Clean the Bay Day | City-Wide | Free*
* advance registration required
Local Recycling Resources - Do Your Part
RecyclingSaving the Earth starts right here in our community. Did you know about all the local resources we have that can help make recycling a part of your daily life? Check out this mini-directory of area services and programs: 
It's Never Too Early to Get the Kids Into Nature!

Explore Our ParksThis spring, join us for one of our three outdoor youth classes aimed at getting kids comfortable with nature in their own backyards. Studies show that time spent outdoors in nature has a positive impact on a child's physical, emotional and mental development. These classes encourage safe exploration of the natural world. Each program focuses on a different age group with hands-on activities geared toward each developmental level.
Nature's Child focuses on sensory exploration for those 2 to 4; parent must attend.
Explore Our Parks introduces local wildlife and habitats to youth 3 to 6; parent must attend.
Earth Buddies gives an opportunity for those 6 to 10 to go hiking and learn to appreciate the "art" of nature; parent attendance not required.
Learn more about the benefits of nature play for youth and how to save our kids from "Nature Deficit Disorder."
Save the Date for Earth Day and American Indian Pow Wow
Saturday, May 1 and Sunday, May 2 at Mount Trashmore Park
For the first time ever, Earth Day and the American Indian Pow Wow will be held on the same weekend at Mount Trashmore Park in the hope that these two events will complement one another, allowing added opportunities to honor Mother Earth.
The 10th Annual American Indian Pow Wow takes places on Saturday, May 1, 11:00 am -  6:00 pm. Become enriched in Native American culture as it is showcased through spirited music, intertribal dancing and drumming, and American Indian cuisine at this interactive and alluring event. You'll also have the opportunity to met Aire, a red-tail hawk that is part of the environmental outreach program used by the Outdoor Programs Team to educate people about local wildlife.
Earth Day LogoMark your calendar for the 2010 Earth Day Celebration on Sunday, May 2, 11:00 am - 5:00 pm. This event will give you a chance to take part in the national Earth Day's efforts to work towards a "Billion Acts of Green" - a collection of environmental actions, deeds and undertakings that count towards endeavors to solve climate change. This event will also feature an eCycling opportunity from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm sponsored by Synergy Recycling. 
It's not to late to register to be an exhibitor at Earth Day. Get more information on becoming a Commercial or Non-Profit Exhibitor. 
Attend the South Beach Trail Boardwalk Ribbon Cutting

You're invited to attend the South Beach Trail Boardwalk Ribbon Cutting Ceremony on Thursday, April, 1 at 1:30 pm. The ceremony will be held at the southwest corner of Norfolk and Pacific Avenues and parking is at the 9th Street Parking Garage.
The South Beach Trail Boardwalk, formerly known as the Pacific Avenue Trail Project, provides a critical pedestrian and bicycle link that connects the popular multi-use trail along Norfolk Avenue with Winston-Salem Avenue, 5th Street and the Rudee Inlet Bridge. The 1,400-foot elevated boardwalk crosses the edge of Lake Holly, running alongside Pacific Avenue. The boardwalk gives walkers, joggers and bikers a picturesque path where they won't have to compete with traffic.

The trail is part of an eight-mile loop from Pacific Avenue to General Booth Boulevard to Birdneck Road to Norfolk Avenue. The loop will be complete once Birdneck Road construction is finished.

Virginia Beach Parks and Recreation believes all of our diverse citizens have a right to participate in community recreation and we are committed to creating equal access for everyone who may have a challenge or barrier. If you or your child requires additional support, we can help.  Learn more about our accommodation and inclusion services.
We welcome your comments and questions.  Feel free to email us at fun@vbgov.com.
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