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The Fairfax County Park Authority offers a variety of activities such as classes, camps and tours in a wide variety of categories including aquatics, fitness, nature, dance, outdoor recreation, performing arts, history and many more. Special events, trips/tours and specialty workshops are listed in Parktakes, the Park Authority’s quarterly guide, available through free subscription to county citizens. .

A Bunny Tea Party

(4-8 yrs.) Come and enjoy some sweet refreshments as we share the Tale of Peter Rabbit. Learn about bunnies in the park, play hoppy games and make your own bunny ears. Bring your bunny friends along!


A Buzzy Bee Tea Party

(8-Adult) Come and have some honeyed treats as you learn about these busy pollinators in the park. Observe our beehive and learn how you can care for native bees in your back yard. Make a bee inspired craft to take home.


Alien Invaders (6-Adult)

Learn about invasive species, their effects on the environment, how to identify them and how to remove them. Please dress accordingly as this program will take place outdoors.


Amphibians After Dark

(7-Adult) Assist park naturalists with a calling amphibian survey. Learn how to identify frogs and toads by their calls as we explore pools and ponds. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program.


Animal Feeding (3-Adult)

(3-Adult) Its dinner time at the nature center and worms and insects are on the menu. Help our naturalist care for and feed the nature center's animals.


Animal Moms and Babies

(2-5 yrs.) Wild animals care for their young in fascinating ways. Through a naturalist-led walk and talk, craft, game and song, learn about nature's wild ways of child rearing. Meet live animals. Children must be accompanied by an adult.


Animal Pajama Party

(3-7yrs.) Put on your pajamas and come to the nature center to hear bedtime stories, meet animals and wish goodnight to the center's live animals. Bring your favorite stuffed animal with you. Children must be accompanied by an adult.


Arbor Day ID

(Adults) Do you know your sweet gum from your hickory? Celebrate Arbor Day by learning tree identification basics and go for a hike to practice new skills.


Are You Going to Eat That?

(12-Adult) Enjoy a naturalist-led hike and identify plants that are safe to eat and which ones to avoid. Other helpful plants are identified for uses such as rope making and folk remedies with connections to Eastern Woodland Indians. Wear sturdy shoes for walking, meets at the pond.


Bats

(7-Adult) Walk the meadows and forest edges to see bats feeding on insects. Use a bat detector to hear echolocation. Learn about our native bats and their habits. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult.


Bears in our Backyard Campfire

(4-Adult) Have you seen a bear in Fairfax County? Identify bear habitats, life cycles, sights and sounds and learn to be a good bear neighbor. This program concludes with a s'mores campfire. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Minimum ages to attend is 4 yrs.


Birds Teach the Physics of Flight

(7-Adult) Explore the physics of flight that birds have mastered. Experiment with wing shapes and designs that provide advantages for birds to migrate, hunt, and survive in varied habitats. Get hands-on investigation time with real feathers of different shapes, colors, sizes, and designs.


Bluebells and Bloodroots

(Adults) Meet at Visitor Center. Learn to identify Riverbend's beautiful spring ephemerals, and discover the folklore that has grown up around them, as we walk along the banks of the Potomac River. Canceled if rain.


Boardwalk Astronomy

(12-Adult) What's new in the night sky? Join park naturalists as they take you on a tour of constellations, comets and other current events happening in the heavens above. Canceled in case of rain or other severe weather.


Build your own Bat House

(3-Adult) Bats help eat mosquitoes and pollinate plants, but they are having a hard time. Help these important animals thrive by building a bat house to hang in your yard. Everyone must register, $15 fee per bat house paid to instructor on the day of the program.


Build Your Own Bee House

(3-Adult) Have fun learning about local pollinators and using some invasive plants to build homes for native pollinators. The bees this house attracts are mason bees, pollinators and solitary bees that rarely sting.


Build Your Own Bird House (6-Adult)

(6-Adult) Have fun learning about local birds and the roles they play in the ecosystem, then help these important animals thrive by building a bird box for your yard. Everyone must register, $15 supply fee per bird box paid to instructor on the day of the program.


Build Your Own Butterfly Garden

(5-Adult) Do you want to attract beautiful butterflies to your lawn? Tour ECLP's butterfly garden and learn how the plants selected nourish and feed butterflies. Then, plant seeds that you can take home and transplant into your own butterfly garden.


Campfire Fridays (3-Adult)

(3-Adult) Join us for a campfire, s'mores, animals, and so much more! We cover a different topic and different area of the park each night.


Campfire Saturdays-Stargazing

(4-Adult) Enjoy a stroll along the lake shores and learn about the constellations, their stories and other night-sky features. Our astronomical naturalist identifies the stars for you and will have some telescopes for you to use. The program concludes with a campfire. S'mores ingredients provided; hot dogs welcome. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Minimum age to attend is 4 yrs.


Campler

Come one come all to Hidden Pond Nature Center and sample activities from several of our new 2019 summer camps. Explore each camp through interactive activities, themes, and adventures at no cost to you.


Catch a Critter!

(4-Adult) Grab a net and join us for a special day with a park scientist to see, touch, and study wetland creatures up close and personal. Use magnifying lenses to study their unique characteristics. What critters live in the wetland? What can these little animals tell us about their home? This rare opportunity to dip-net in the wetland is possible through the guidance of our park naturalists.


Celebrate National Salamander Day

(5-Adult) Virginia is a worldwide destination for salamander fans. Celebrate this special day with a salamander search both on land and in the stream. Learn how salamanders compare with their amphibian cousins. Children age 9 and younger must be accompanied by an adult registered in this program.


Copperheads and Black Racers

(8-Adult) Assist a naturalist with a reptile survey. We search for, capture, identify and release snakes. Learn habits and preferred habitats of our native snakes. Children must be accompanied by an adult registered in the program.


Corn Grinding & Clay Pottery

(4-Adult) How did the Powhatan Native Americans use the plants and animals you see every day for their medicine, grocery store, clothing and fun? Immerse yourself in a way of life 400 years ago. Grind corn, make a clay pot, master corn darts and go on a guided tour to see the park from the perspective of a Virginia Indian.


Coyote Campfire

(4-Adult) Satisfy your curiosity and your sweet tooth with one howling campfire. Listen to coyote calls, take a short hike, and make s'mores as you learn about this wily canine. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult.


Critter Care

(7-Adult) Thinking about getting a pet reptile? Curious to learn about their care? In this all new program, we cover information essential for new or aspiring reptile keepers. Learn about the diet, husbandry, and temperament of a variety of turtle, snake, and lizard species common in the pet trade.


Discovery Days

(3-Adult) Discover Ellanor C. Lawrence Park with our wonderful historians or naturalists. During this hands-on interpretive hour you may search for animals, make biscuits and butter or explore a stream and much more. Contact the park for program topics.


Early Signs of Spring

(4-Adult) Walk with a naturalist to look for early native wildflowers, morels and animal life.


Exploring Nature Series-Spring (6-Adult)

Students explore Virginia's ecosystem in this nature series which takes place both outdoors and indoors so dress accordingly. Series dates and topics: 4/13 Animals, 5/18 Plants.


Family Owl Outing

(6-Adult) Discover the secret world of owls. Learn what makes these raptors excellent night predators with a presentation followed by a trail hike to hopefully hear or spot one of Huntley's resident owls. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult.


Family Woodcock Walk

(6-Adult) Come for an evening walk through the woods to one of the park's large meadows. Listen for the call of the male woodcock and hopefully see his amazing courtship display and flight. Bring a flashlight. Approximately 1.5 mile walk on uneven terrain. Canceled if rain. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Meets at the South Kings Highway entrance to the park.


Feeding Day

(4-13 yrs.) Join a naturalist and youth volunteers as we demonstrate how we feed our site display animals. Make a birdfeeder to take home and use. Search for worms and insects and assist in serving dinner. Children must be accompanied by an adult.


Flower Pots and Violets

(3-6 yrs.) Celebrate spring by decorating your very own flower pot and plant a beautiful violet flower to take home. How do plants grow, why are they important to wildlife? Join a park naturalist for indoor activities followed by a guided walk to look for spring wildflowers.


Give a Hoot Campfire

(4-Adult) Barred owls inhabit our stream valley parks. Learn to identify these owls from other native owls while taking a hike. Finish by enjoying s'mores around the campfire.


Growing and Protecting a Park Forest

(4-Adult) Walk with the Resource Manager, as you are given insights on how this 650 acre county park of forests, meadows and streams is kept healthy and thriving.  Learn about native plants and invasive species that makeup the park's wildlife habitat.  Walk is seasonally based. 


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