September 2016 Events in Georgia’s State Parks and Historic Sites

September 2016 Events in Georgia’s State Parks and Historic Sites

www.GaStateParks.org/events

Below is a sample of September events at Georgia’s State Parks & Historic Sites. For more programs, visit www.GaStateParks.org/events and the parks’ web pages.  More information on accommodations and recreation can be found at GeorgiaStateParks.org or 1-800-864-7275.

Your State Parks Day — Saturday, September 24, 2016

Celebrate this annual day of service at 60 natural and cultural treasures across Georgia. Free admission and parking for volunteers sponsored by Friends of Georgia State Parks & Historic Sites. View projects at GaStateParks.org/events.

Hidden Gem Series – 85th Anniversary Celebration

Throughout 2016, Georgia’s State Parks & Historic Sites will host events that highlight secret spots few visitors notice, such as an old marble mine and a Bald Eagle nest. Visit http://gastateparks.org/HiddenGems/Events for a list of statewide Hidden Gem programs. Some are listed below.

Metro Atlanta

Secrets of the Mountain Wilderness Hike

Saturday, September 10, 2016 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge, GA

You may have heard about Panola Mountain’s unique ecology, but are you ready to discover some of the mountain’s lesser-known history? Join our expert tracker and guide to head off the trail and explore Panola’s hidden cemeteries, whiskey stills, beaver dams, and more. Hike is strenuous, 6+ miles. Must register in advance. Ages 14 and older. $10 plus $5 parking. 770-389-7801.

ZZZ’s in the Trees – Canopy Camping

Saturday & Sunday from September 10, 2016 until September 11, 2016

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge, GA

Join us for a tranquil night in the canopy as you lay in your “tree-boat,” viewing stars through shimmering branches. A treetop camp will be established in our secluded climbing tree for an overnight experience. Participants should bring dinner, breakfast and a sleeping bag. Non-climbers allowed to camp. Register in advance. $90 plus $5 parking. 770-389-7801.

Moonlight Mountain Hike

Saturday, September 10, 2016 7 PM to 9 PM

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge, GA

Join us for a ranger-led hike up Panola Mountain to enjoy the sunset over Atlanta. The moonlight will guide us down to a lakeside campfire where we’ll enjoy s’mores! Bring flashlights, bug spray, hiking boots and water. Ages 10 and up. Space is limited. Advance registration is required. $10 plus $5 parking. 770-389-7801.

Hidden Gem Series: Secrets of Homestead Trail

Saturday, September 10, 2016 12 PM to 2 PM

Red Top Mountain State Park – Acworth, GA

If you don’t know what you’re looking for, you may have missed it. Homestead Trail is home to, you guessed it, old homesteads. However, finding these sites is tricky to the untrained eye. Join a ranger-led hike through the forest to the sites of these homes and learn the untold story of the woods. $5 parking. 770-975-0055.

Geology Hike

Saturday, September 10, 2016 10 AM to 12 PM

Sweetwater Creek State Park – Lithia Springs, GA

Geologist John Johnston will lead a moderate 2-mile hike identifying rocks and explaining how and when they formed. He will also explain the tectonic events that forced the rock units to be faulted and folded. There will be a visit down to the ruins of the Civil War-era New Manchester Mill alongside the lovely rapids of Sweetwater creek. $6 plus $5 parking. 770-732-5871.

Bend Fest

Saturday, September 17, 2016 10 AM to 4 PM

Chattahoochee Bend State Park – Newnan, GA

This festival hosting Georgia’s artisans, crafts and food is located right on the Chattahoochee River. Get adventurous with outdoor recreational activities, bird and nature show, hay rides, games and fun for the family. $5 parking. 770-254-7271.

Intro to Tree Climbing

Saturday, September 17, 2016 1 PM to 5 PM

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge, GA

Join us “on rope” for an adventure exploring the canopy above. This is an introductory program to recreational tree climbing. Participants will use rope and harness to ascend into a 200+ year old Southern Red Oak, where they can climb, swing and scramble. Must call to register. Ages 8 and up. $15 plus $5 parking. 770-389-7801.

Creature Feature

Saturday, September 17, 2016 2 PM to 3 PM

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge, GA

Can turtles leave their shells? How many types of venomous snakes live in Georgia? Are salamanders reptiles? Learn the answers to all of these questions and more as a Panola Mountain Ranger introduces you to our reptilian residents in this live animal show. Meet in the Nature Center. Space is limited, so call to register in advance. $2 plus $5 parking. 770-389-7801.

Harvest Time at the Homestead

Saturday & Sunday from September 17, 2016 until September 18, 2016, 10 AM – 4 PM

Red Top Mountain State Park – Acworth, GA

Step back in time to the 1800s and experience the lives of citizens and soldiers. Living history enthusiasts will bring our historic log cabin to life as they demonstrate crafts and daily activities. Try your hand at woodworking, laundry, soap making and more. Stop by the Civil War camp and visit with soldiers. See black powder weapons fired. $5 parking. 770-975-0055.

Middle & South Georgia

Twilight Night Paddle

Friday, September 2, 2016 6:30 PM to 8 PM

Saturday, September 10, 2016 6:30 PM to 8 PM

High Falls State Park – Jackson, GA

Watch wading birds and enjoy the setting sun in this peaceful, ranger-led 3-mile canoe trip to Buck Creek. This program is open to adults and children 8 years or older who are accompanied by an adult. Reservations required. $15 includes boat and gear. $5 parking. 478-993-3053.

Archery for Beginners

Saturdays in September and October, 10 AM – 11:30 AM

Elijah Clark State Park – Lincolnton, GA

Haven’t shot an arrow yet? Would you like to learn and sharpen your archery skills? Either way, you’ll be guided and taught by our experienced ranger. Pre-registration is encouraged. $5 plus $5 parking. 706-359-3458.

Cool Pool Summer Splash Celebration

Saturday, September 3, 2016 1 PM to 4 PM

F.D. Roosevelt State Park – Pine Mountain, GA

Come splash with us! Food, fun activities like corn hole and volleyball, contests, and prizes for the whole family will be at Liberty Bell Pool on Hwy 354. DJ poolside from 1-3 PM. $2 – $5 plus $5 parking. 706-663-4858.

Labor Day Folklife Festival

Saturday, September 3, 2016 10:30 AM to 3:30 PM

Jarrell Plantation Historic Site – Juliette, GA

How better to celebrate Labor Day than learning about old time labor? Experience firsthand the daily chores needed to run a farm and reward your labors with games and music. $4-$6.50 478-986-5172.

Peanut Express Train Excursion

Friday, September 9, 2016 10 AM to 3:30 PM

SAM Shortline Train – Cordele, GA

Visit the large collection of telephones in Leslie at the Rural Telephone Museum, then travel west to Plains for peanut treats. Call 229-276-0755 for tickets.

Dog Splash and Luau at the Pool

Saturday, September 10, 2016 1 PM to 4 PM

F.D. Roosevelt State Park – Pine Mountain, GA

Let your canine friend swim in the pool and unleash the fun with Frisbees, balls and music. Dogs must be up to date on all shots and can be off-leash inside the pool area. Only dogs are allowed in the pool. No outside food or drink. Pool concessions open. $8 per dog. Humans free. $5 parking. 706-663-4858.

Full Moon Paddle

Friday, September 16, 2016 8:30 PM to 10 PM

Elijah Clark State Park – Lincolnton, GA

Join a guided tour of Clark Hill Lake and enjoy a peaceful paddle under the bright moon. Enjoy the night sky and sounds. The program will go on if it is cloudy or light rain. Meet at bathhouse 1 to receive your life jackets. $10 – $15 plus $5 parking. 706-359-3458.

Full Moon Paddle

Friday, September 16, 2016 7:30 PM to 9 PM

George L. Smith State Park – Twin City, GA

Join us for a moonlight canoe and kayak paddle under the stars. Pre-register through the office any day prior to the event between 8 AM and 5 PM. Check-in will be from 5:00 PM until 5:30 PM. We will launch at 5:35 PM. $15 includes equipment, $8 if you bring your own. $5 parking. 478-763-2759.

Americus Explorer Train Ride

Friday, September 16, 2016 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM

Friday, September 30, 2016 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM

SAM Shortline Train – Cordele, GA

Riding in air-conditioned, 1949 vintage train cars, you can travel from Cordele through Georgia Veterans State Park, across Lake Blackshear, visit Historic Downtown Americus, tour Habitat for Humanity’s Global Village. Call 229-410-7937 for group reservations and rates. 229-276-0755.

Lovebug Festival

Saturday, September 17, 2016 10 AM to 2 PM

General Coffee State Park – Nicholls, GA

Explore the wonderful world of insects at the park’s third annual Lovebug Festival. Activities will include edible bug programs, insect-related crafts for kids, exploring the park’s new pollinator garden and more. $2 plus $5 parking. 912-384-7082.

Stand-Up Paddleboarding for Beginners

Saturday, September 17, 2016 10 AM to 11 AM

High Falls State Park – Jackson, GA

Our class will help you develop fundamental skills such as balance, effective paddling/stroke, steering, and falling/recovery techniques. Open to adults and children 12 and older who are accompanied by an adult. Must be a swimmer. Advance registration required. $15 plus $5 parking. 478-993-3053.

Sock Hop

Saturday, September 24, 2016 5 PM to 8 PM

Indian Springs State Park – Flovilla, GA

Dust off your poodle skirts and letter sweaters! Enjoy music, dancing, and refreshments at the Stone Pavilion. $5 parking. 770-504-2277.

Walk Amongst the Ghosts of Camp Lawton

Friday, September 30, 2016 7 PM to 9 PM

Magnolia Springs State Park – Millen, GA

Enjoy a lantern tour of the grounds which encompasses the prison and fort areas of the largest Civil War prison, Camp Lawton, while sharing ghostly experiences of previous guests. Our tour will end in the museum where artifacts found on the property are on display. Will you be amongst those who see a ghostly visitor from the past? $10 plus $5 parking. 478-982-1660.

Northern Georgia

Canyon Night Hike

Friday, September 2, 2016 7 PM to 9 PM

Cloudland Canyon State Park – Rising Fawn, GA

Enjoy a 2-mile hike on one of the best trails at the park. You will learn interesting facts about the geology and history of the canyon. By the end of the hike, we will be in the dark, enjoying the trail by moonlight and listening for night sounds. Ages 10 and older. Reservations required. $10 plus $5 parking. 706-913-7170.

Catfish Rodeo

September 3, 2016 until September 5, 2016, 10 AM – 3 PM

Cloudland Canyon State Park – Rising Fawn, GA

Bring the family fishing at our stocked catfish pond for the first weekend of the catch ‘n’ keep season. A limited amount of fishing gear is available for loan. Bait included in the price. Fishing lessons available. $5 plus $5 parking. 706-657-4050.

Gorge Floor Hike

Saturday, September 3, 2016 10:30 AM to 3 PM

Sunday, September 4, 2016 10:30 AM to 3 PM

Monday, September 5, 2016 10:30 AM to 3 PM

Tallulah Gorge State Park – Tallulah Falls, GA

Explore this stunning gorge with a ranger-led hike. First travel down 535 steps to a river crossing, then climb boulders and logs to get to Sliding Rock. Wear your swimsuit if you want to cool off in the natural slide. Bring water, lunch and snacks. Register in advance. No pets; kids must be 10 or older. $10 plus $5 parking. 706-754-7981.

Emory Jones Book Signing

2nd Saturday of month from September 10, 2016 until December 10, 2016, 10:30 AM – 2:30 PM

Hardman Farm Historic Site – Sautee Nacoochee, GA

Emory Jones, author of “Distant Voices: The Story of the Nacoochee Valley Indian Mound,” will read excerpts from his new book “The Valley Where They Danced.” This pre-WWI historical novel features scenes from Hardman Farm. Hear excerpts prior to the tour and then bring back questions for Mr. Jones afterward. $3-$12.  Books for sale on site. 706-878-1077.

Travelers Rest “Hidden Gem”

Saturday, September 10, 2016 10 AM to 11 AM

Traveler’s Rest Historic Site – Toccoa, GA

Join the guided tour to discover the old post office and find the hidden compartment where Mr. Jarrett used to hide his gold. $5 parking. 706-356-4362.

Full-Moon Suspension Bridge Hike

Thursday, September 15, 2016 7:15 PM to 9:15 PM

Saturday, September 17, 2016 8:45 PM to 10:45 PM

Tallulah Gorge State Park – Tallulah Falls, GA

Enjoy a 1-mile hike that takes you down the stairs, across the suspension bridge and on the rim of the gorge under the full moon. Register in advance. $5 plus $5 parking. 706-754-7981.

Full Moon Lake Paddle

Friday, September 16, 2016 7:45 PM to 9:45 PM

Tallulah Gorge State Park – Tallulah Falls, GA

Enjoy a relaxing paddle around Tallulah Lake as the full moon reflects off the water. This ranger-led event is an exciting way to get out in the evenings and enjoy nature. Space is limited, so register in advance. No pets; kids must be 8 or older. $15 plus $5 parking. 706-754-7981.

Chattahoochee Mountain Music Festival

Saturday, September 24, 2016 12 PM

Don Carter State Park – Gainesville, GA

Join us for an afternoon in the park with old time music, arts and crafts vendors and good food. $5 parking. 678-450-7726.

Hidden Gems of Richard B. Russell State Park

Saturday, September 24, 2016 2 PM to 3 PM

Richard B. Russell State Park – Elberton, GA

Our popular disc golf course and other areas are home to what remains of past sites and homesteads that visitors easily overlook. This naturalist-led hike will replay in living history how the families lived in previous centuries. Meet at the disc golf course parking area. $5 parking. 706-213-2045.

ForestWatch Guided Hike

Saturday, September 24, 2016 2 PM to 4 PM

Smithgall Woods State Park – Helen, GA

Join Georgia ForestWatch Ecologist Jess Riddle on a guided hike of the Laurel Ridge Trail and surrounding area. She will talk about the plants and animals that make our forest diverse and healthy. Register in advance. $5 parking. 706-878-3087.

Coastal Georgia

Labor Day Celebration at Fort McAllister

Saturday, September 3, 2016 9 AM to 4 PM

Fort McAllister State Park – Richmond Hill, GA

Civil War soldiers will be firing rifles and cannons throughout the day while presenting living history programs. $8 per adult, $5 per youth, under 6 free. 912-727-2339.

Labor Day at Fort King George

Monday, September 5, 2016 10 AM to 4 PM

Fort King George Historic Site – Darien, GA

Historians and volunteers will demonstrate colonial-period “labor,” including pinning, wood-working, and blacksmithing. Celebratory musket and cannon firings will take place on the hour. $4.50-$7.50 912-437-4770.

Labor Day at Fort Morris

Monday, September 5, 2016 11 AM to 3 PM

Fort Morris Historic Site – Midway, GA

Commemorate Labor Day holiday with hourly soldier talks and musket and cannon firings at this scenic coastal fort. $3-$4.50 912-884-5999.

Marsh Walk with Dr. Charlie Belin

Wednesday, September 14, 2016 5 PM to 6 PM

Wednesday, September 28, 2016 5 PM to 6 PM

Wormsloe Historic Site – Savannah, GA

Join Dr. Charlie Belin, one of the foremost experts of Marsh Ecology in the region, as he leads a hike into the marsh surrounding Wormsloe and provides a fascinating look into the plant and animal life that call Wormsloe home. Register in advance.  $4.50-$10 912-353-3023.



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