Outdoor notices: April 28, 2014
• M.K. Goddard State Park in Mercer County will hold a night hike to look for owls and other creatures of the night, using night vision goggles, starting at 8:45 p.m. Saturday. Meet at the dam for this easy walk. Dress for the weather. Preregistration is required by calling 724-253-4833.
• Forbes State Forest in Westmoreland County will host a Mother's Day wildflower walk at 6:30 p.m. on May 8. Participants will learn about some of the state's native species on this one-mile walk. Meet at the parking lot on the left past the Linn Run State Park office. Call 724-259-2201.
• Forbes State Forest in Westmoreland County is holding a series of “rustic runs,” which are four- to five-mile trail runs through the forest, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on May 21, June 18, July 23, Aug. 27, Sept. 17 and Oct. 15. All skill levels are welcome. Meet at the warming hut on Laurel Summit Road. Call 724-259-2201.
• The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission will hold a free basic boating course from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 10 at Conneaut Lake Sportsmen Club in Crawford County. The class covers basic boating safety, boating laws and regulations and equipment. Preregistration is required by contacting Chad Foster at 814-683-5126 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
• Dana Rizzo and Susan Boser, water resource educators with Penn State Extension, and Tim Wood of Aquatic Edge Consulting will offer pond management workshops in Sarver, Butler County, from 1 to 3 and 6 to 8 p.m. on April 30 at Fair Winds Manor, 126 Iron Bridge Road. The presenters will offer tips and advice on common pond problems and proper management, such as how to identify and control nuisance plants and the best kinds of fish to stock. Cost is $15 per person. Preregistration is required at http://extension.psu.edu/courses/pond-and-lake-management or by calling 724-774-3003.
• Forbes State Forest in Westmoreland County will hold a free program on how to use a field guide at 9 a.m. on Saturday. Meet at the parking lot just past the Linn Run State Park office to go on a 3 1⁄2-mile walk that will focus on how to use a guide to identify common wildflowers. Call 724-259-2201.
• Staff from Jennings Environmental Education Center in Butler County will host a “nature detectives” program on salamanders at 2 p.m. on Sunday. It's designed for kids ages 5 and up with an accompanying adult. Kids will explore the forest and water in search of the salamanders that live there. The program is free but space is limited and preregistration is required by calling 724-794-6011.
• Harrison Hills County Parks near Natrona Heights will host a free family fishing day from 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Participants will learn basic fishing skills, such as knot tying, casting, bait options and how to take a fish off the hook, all at the hands of Fish and Boat Commission instructors. There will be time spent fishing, too. It's all free and equipment is provided. Adults must bring a child, though, and children must be accompanied by an adult. Preregistration is required by calling 814-443-9841 or emailing email@example.com.
• M.K. Goddard State Park in Mercer County will hold a “night fishing 101” program covering all the basics of fishing after dark at 8:30 p.m. May 9. Rods, bait and tackle will be provided, but those 16 and older will need a fishing license. Preregistration is required by calling 724-253-4833.
• Organizers of the Laurel Highlands Trout Trail will hold a “Fly fishing forum for females only” starting at 10 a.m. on May 17 at the Lincoln Highway Experience, 3534 Route 30, Latrobe, Westmoreland County. For beginner and experienced female anglers, the event will begin with coffee, pastries and juice, a display of women's fishing fashions, and a program on “all you need to know about fly fishing.” Afterward, participants will drive to a nearby stream for some hands-on fishing and instruction. Cost is $30 and includes use of equipment. Space is limited and preregistration is required by calling 724-879-4241.