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Outdoors & Environmental Newsletter | July 2012 | VBgov.com/Parks 
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Enter Our Photo Contest through July 23

I Love VBPR!Get creative and show us why you heart Virginia Beach Parks & Recreation! Snap a photo showcasing one of VBPR's programs, parks, facilities or events while incorporating a heart symbol.
Submit your photo through our Facebook app. Be sure to include the location of the photo and a brief description during submission and then get your friends and family to vote for your photo!
The entry with the most votes wins a $100 Virginia Beach Parks & Recreation gift certificate which can be used towards membership, classes, personal training and more! Second and third place winners will receive a $50 and $25 gift certificate respectively.

Snap a photo (including a heart), upload and get votes to win!
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Kayak Rentals at 
Stumpy Lake!
Saturday, August 11 & September 18
9 am - 5 pm

Come out to Stumpy Lake and rent a kayak (tandem & singles available) to paddle this beautiful area. Life jackets & paddles included. Children age 3 must be at least 25 lbs and those under 18 must be with an adult.

$10/hr/boat | Pay on site; cash only
Archery Demo Day and Games!

TargetOn Saturday, August 18, we have two great opportunities for archers at all levels to come out and show their skills! For those who have never even picked up a bow and arrow, stop by Kempsville Recreation Center between 1 and 4 pm for our free Archery Demo Day. In this hands-on open house, we'll provide all the equipment and instruction on how to aim and shoot! Open to ages 6 & up, but participants under age 16 must have a parent present. No registration needed - just stop in and step up!

For experienced archers who can already shoot a bow and arrow, it's time to test your skills at our Archery Games. From 10 am to noon, archers will compete against one another in various games of skill. Could you be the next Katniss Everdeen? Advanced registration is required. Open to ages 10 & up and all participants must be proficient in range rules, whistle commands and handling of equipment. Cost is $18. Register online or in person at any recreation center.

Join Us at the Azumaya Dedication at Red Wing Park 
Wednesday, July 25 | 10:30 am | Red Wing Park 

AzumayaHelp us celebrate Virginia Beach's international sisterhood with Miyazaki City, Japan, at the Azumaya dedication ceremony on July 25 at Red Wing Park. The Azumaya, a tea garden or pavilion of traditional Japanese design, is a place for contemplation, meditation, and reflection. It is located in the Miyazaki Garden within Red Wing Park for the public to enjoy without an admission cost.


The Azumaya is a 15-foot by 12-foot structure built according to the traditional Japanese Azumaya format. It was built in celebration of the 20th anniversary of our "Sister City" relationship with Miyazaki City, Japan. The Azumaya project was supported by a generous financial contribution from Miyazaki City to the Sister Cities Association of Virginia Beach. Virginia Beach Parks and Recreation provided the land and labor to develop the Azumaya.


For the last 20 years, Miyazaki and Virginia Beach enjoyed exchanges in the promotion and development of community volunteerism and global citizen diplomacy. In 2007, Miyazaki's eco-park Hagino Dai and Mount Trashmore Park officially became "Sister Parks." In addition, through our Sister Cities relationship, Tallwood Elementary and Miyazaki Minami Elementary School became "Sister Schools."

Have You Been Seeing More Turtles?  


Red Eared Slider TurtleYou may have noticed the recent abundance of turtles, either in the local waterways, crossing the road, or even in your yard. All turtles must come to land to lay their eggs and the summer months are the best time to do it. Turtles pick a spot on land, dig a hole, lay their eggs and then cover them up and head out. You may have come across a turtle nest and not even realized it. Once the eggs are laid, it can take up to two or three months for them to hatch.


Did you know the temperature of the ground determines whether the turtle babies (hatchlings) are male or female? In places where the nest is warm, the resulting hatchlings will be female. Where the nests are cool, they will be male. Typically, a nest contains warm and cool areas, so each nest can produce males and females. However, if a turtle nests late in the season, when the weather starts to cool down, then the entire nest can be all males. If the turtle nests in the height of a warm summer, the entire nest might be female.  


If you happen to be so lucky to come across a turtle laying eggs, just step back and trust their instincts. The turtles know what they're doing. They may have been laying eggs longer than you've been alive, as some turtles can live to be over 100 years old!

A Fond Farewell to Our Animals

Anne Marie with TurtleIt's time to say farewell to the department's group of injured, non-releasable wildlife, managed by Outdoor Programs. Over the past ten years, the animals have served as ambassadors not only for our department, but for their wild counterparts as well.

During their tenure with Parks & Recreation, the animals attended over 500 programs and were seen by over 15,000 people. They've visited every recreation center, every VB Public Library, many city parks, almost all Out-of-School Time Programs school sites and several camps. They were welcomed by groups of all ages from seniors at our Forever Young Centers to pre-schoolers in many of our departmental programs. In addition to programs, they also attended numerous Special Events, where thousands more people had the opportunity to learn about them. Those of us who worked first hand with these animals were able to see time after time the positive impact they had on those they met.

Katie with SnakeAs of July 1, the animals have found new homes: Peggy, the toad; Lynnhaven, the diamondback terrapin; Neptune, the kingsnake; Peek-a-boo, the mud turtle; and Lola, the screech owl went to First Landing State Park's new Visitor's Center. Rocky, the wood turtle; Sunny, the box turtle; Aire, the red-tailed hawk; and Pavo, the barred owl went to the Virginia Aquarium. Gary, the great horned owl went to The Virginia Living Museum in Newport News. And MJ, the corn snake; Daisy, the yellow-belly slider; Shawn & Scarlet, the red-eared sliders; and Squeaks, the rat are all going to private collections.

As we say goodbye, we thank the animals for their years of service and wish them well in their new homes. Although we will miss them greatly, we know they will continue to touch the hearts and influence the lives of all they meet. View additional photos here.
Provide Feedback at Pleasure House Point Open House

Monday, July 30 | 6 - 7:30 pm | Baylake United Methodist Church, 4300 Shore Drive

Pleasure House Point You are invited to provide feedback on the concept plans drafted for the newly acquired Pleasure House Point property during a public open house on Monday, July 30, 6:00 - 7:30 pm at Baylake United Methodist Church in Virginia Beach.

This Open House will provide an opportunity for you to discuss with staff the master planning ideas that have been developed with community stakeholders and provide feedback on the objectives for this natural public area.

Located just west of the Lesner Bridge and south of the Chesapeake Bay, Pleasure House Point is 118 acres of water, tidal marsh, sandy shores and maritime forest. The shallow water estuarine environment of the property provides habitat for the iconic Chesapeake Bay blue crab and the Lynnhaven oyster. This high-profile property was once being considered for a large waterfront development, but with the help of the Trust for Public Land, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation and the surrounding community, the City has recovered one of the largest undeveloped parcels of land on the Lynnhaven River for generations to come.

Please Note Our Upcoming Facility Closures 


All Virginia Beach Recreation Centers & Owl Creek Tennis Center will be closed on Monday, September 3 for Labor Day. Parks remain open for your enjoyment.

Don't forget that your membership is good at all six Virginia Beach Recreation Centers! If your usual center is closed for maintenance, take the opportunity to visit another center. Use this locator to help you find one!

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 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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Virginia Beach Parks & Recreation is accredited by CAPRA,
the certifying agency of the National Recreation and Park Association.