16 things to do at Presque Isle in September
As summer fades into fall, Pennsylvania's most-visited park is still packed full of activities and events. Here's a list of some of the events, activities and more offered at Presque Isle State Park this month:
1. Sept. 3: Lagoon by Pontoons tours, daily through Sept. 4, 11 a.m., 1 and 2 p.m. Join park staff and volunteers for a one-hour interpretive pontoon boat ride to discover the natural history and beauty of the park interior. Sign-up begins at 10 a.m. daily at the pontoon station on a first-come, first-served basis. Info: www.trecpi.org. Cost: Free.
2. Sept. 3: Presque Isle Lighthouse tours, daily through Sept. 4, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. For more information, call 833-3604. Cost: $6 per person.
3. Sept. 3: Evening Lagoon by Pontoon tours, 7-8:30 p.m. Sign-up is limited to six seats per person regardless of age on all rides. Register online at events.dcnr.pa.gov/presque—isle—state—park. Cost: Free.
4. Sept. 3: Fishing Rod Loaner Program at Tom Ridge Environmental Center, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Visit the main desk and sign out the needed equipment. A driver's license is required. Borrowers are responsible for bait. A fishing license is required for those 16 and older. All equipment is due back before 6 p.m. Cost: Free.
5. Sept. 3: Early Bird Lagoon by Pontoon tour, 10 a.m. Join a morning pontoon ride offered by online reservation only. Sign-up is limited to six seats per person regardless of age on all rides. Register by going to events.dcnr.pa.gov/presque—isle—state—park. Cost: Free.
6. Sept. 3: Trail Cam Program: Behind the Scenes at Presque Isle, 2-3 p.m. Join the park naturalists at the Ridge Center in Room 112 for a behind-the-scenes look at the animals of Presque Isle. Registration not required. Cost: Free.
7. Sept. 8: Moonlight on the Bay, 6:30-10 p.m. Join the sixth annual gala at Perry Monument to benefit the Crime Victim Center of Erie County. Enjoy music, local wines, beer and hors d'oeuvres. Info: cvcerie.org /. Cost: $100 per ticket.
8. Sept. 9: Adopt-A-Beach program, 9 a.m.-noon. Join the Adopt-A-Beach program, which provides all the necessary equipment to help keep Presque Isle beaches attractive. Meet at the Ridge Center in Room 112 to sign in and receive bags, gloves and other gear. You will be shown how to tally trash items on a special form, then will head out to one of the beaches to gather litter. Open to people of all ages, including children with adult supervision. Community service hours available. Cost: Free
9. Sept. 9: Beast on the Bay, 8:30 a.m. Test yourself over sand, trails, water and 30 obstacles on the Barber Beast on the Bay 10-Mile Obstacle Course. Proceeds benefit the Barber National Institute, a nonprofit that provides services to children, adults and families with developmental disabilities, autism, learning delays and mental health disorders. Registration and info: barberbeast.org.
10. Sept. 10: Erie Marathon, 7 a.m.-1 p.m. Join the Erie Runners' Club for the annual Erie Marathon. The Erie Runners Club Beach 1 Pavilion will host the packet pickup, start and finish for the marathon, expo, post race party and awards. Registration and info: www.eriemarathon.org. Cost: $100 through Sept. 8.
11. Sept. 15: Presque Isle Audubon program, 7 p.m. The Presque Isle Audubon Society presents “Patagonia: Nature at the End of the Earth,” at the Tom Ridge Environmental Center, Room 112. Social gathering will follow the program. Open to the public.
12. Sept. 16: International Coastal Cleanup, 9 a.m.-noon. Registration begins at 9 a.m. at the Ridge Center. Participants will collect trash and record data regarding their finds. This event is appropriate for all ages. If your group is larger than 10, please call 814-217-9632 to preregister by Sept. 12.
13. Sept. 23: DiscoverE: Animal Tracks, 11 a.m.-noon. Head to the Ridge Center to learn more about animals and the tracks they leave. This program will feature a story, take-home craft and an activity. Registration is required: events.dcnr.pa.gov/presque—isle—state—park
14. Sept. 23: Race for Recovery, 9 a.m.-noon. Join a 5K run/walk, a 10K open race or a 1K fun run/walk benefiting Gaudenzia Erie Inc., a nonprofit that helps people affected by chemical dependency, mental illness and related conditions through comprehensive treatment and prevention. Cost varies based on the race. Info: erieraceforrecovery.com/
15. Sept. 23: Maritime Medicinals, 10 a.m. Learn about herbal medicine aboard ships and leave with a newfound appreciation for maritime history. Event held at the Ridge Center. Hosted by GoNative Erie!, the Regional Science Consortium and the TREC Foundation. Registration required. Info: http://www.regsciconsort.com/events/categories/go-native-erie/. Cost: $31
16. Sept. 24: Erie County C.R.O.P. Hunger Walk, 1 p.m. Walk 6.2 miles or participate in a 1-mile walk to raise money for local food pantries to help Erie's hungry. Water stops and bathrooms are available along the walk route and pets are invited. Meet at Beach 1 Pavilion. Walk begins at 2 p.m. Info: crophungerwalk.org/eriepa/
Sarah Grabski is a writer for Erie Times-News.