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Saturday, December 24, 2016

Celebration of Lights @ Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park

Saturday, December 17, 2016 - 5:30pm EST to Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 9:00pm EST

A suggested donation of $5 for adults and $2 for children ages 3 through 12 is suggested. Children age 2 and under are admitted free.

More Information:
Susan Strawbridge, Park Services Specialist; (352) 628-5445, ext. 1002

Located in the Northeast region at:
Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park
4150 S. Suncoast Blvd. (US 19)
Homosassa, FL 34446

Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park, along with the Friends of Homosassa Springs Wildlife Park, will host its annual Christmas Celebration of Lights, a nine-evening event, from Saturday, Dec. 17 through Christmas Eve, Saturday, Dec. 24, and again on Monday, Dec. 26, 2016. The park will open at 5:30 p.m. on these evenings and remain open until 9 p.m.

The Celebration of Lights will feature an all new synchronized light and sound display in the Garden of the Springs by Sebastian Hawes. Joe Dube will host and present special appearances by our nightly entertainment. Holiday lights, decorations, music and refreshments will create the perfect setting for this holiday wonderland. The Wildside Café will be offering a selection of refreshments. The Friends will also be selling popcorn in the Garden of the Springs.  A variety of entertainment will be provided nightly in the Garden of the Springs.

Additional Information:

 Participation Requirements

 

 

Celebration of Lights @ Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park

Saturday, December 17, 2016 - 5:30pm EST to Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 9:45pm EST

Suggested donations: $5.00 adults; $2.00 children ages 3 through 12; ages 2 and under free

More Information:
Susan Strawbridge; (352) 628-5445, ext. 1002

Located in the Northeast region at:
Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park
4150 S. Suncoast Blvd. (US 19)
Homosassa, FL 34446

Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park, along with the Friends of Homosassa Springs Wildlife Park, will host its annual Christmas Celebration of Lights, a nine-evening event, from Saturday, Dec. 17 through Christmas Eve, Saturday, Dec. 24, and again on Monday, Dec. 26, 2016. The park will open at 5:30 p.m. on these evenings and remain open until 9 p.m.

The Celebration of Lights will feature an all new synchronized light and sound display in the Garden of the Springs by Sebastian Hawes. Joe Dube will host and present special appearances by our nightly entertainment. Holiday lights, decorations, music and refreshments will create the perfect setting for this holiday wonderland. The Wildside Café will be offering a selection of refreshments. The Friends will also be selling popcorn in the Garden of the Springs.  A variety of entertainment will be provided nightly in the Garden of the Springs.

 

Additional Information:

Transportation available from US 19 Visitor Center parking area

Participation Requirements

SUP for Beginners @ Oleta River State Park

Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 9:00am to 10:30am EST

Class is 1 hour and 30 minutes long, and cost $40.00+tax per person. Price includes equipment and instructor

More Information:


Located in the Southeast region at:
Oleta River State Park
3400 NE 163rd Street
North Miami Beach, FL 33160

Do you want to learn how to Stand Up Paddleboard?? Come learn the foundations of beautiful sport at the BG Oleta River Outdoor Center, located within the Oleta River State Park. "Walk on Water" through Mangrove Creeks leading out to Biscayne Bay. Our knowledgable "SUP" instructor will provide you with a 10 minute on land lesson, including the anatomy of the board. Learn how to properly launch and mount your board followed by slowly coming to the upright standing position. You will learn proper paddling technique, how to handle adverse weather conditions and how to help another paddler in need. 

Don't be intimidated! This watersport is easier than it looks. Pick up a new hobby while meeting other local outdoor adventurists! 

 

1876 Cow Camp @ Lake Kissimmee State Park

Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 9:00am to 4:30pm EST

Free with regular park admission

More Information:
Park Service Specialist Andi Henry, 863-696-1112, Andrea.Henry@dep.state.fl.us

Located in the Central region at:
Lake Kissimmee State Park
14248 Camp Mack Rd.
Lake Wales , FL 33898

As you roam down the short trail to the Cow Camp, you will travel back in time to 1876. At the end of the trail, you will find a Florida Cow Hunter in a frontier camp along the route of a cattle drive. He will be cooking, making coffee, tending to the cattle or just resting up until the next roundup or cattle drive. The Cow Hunter will be very happy to share stories about what his life is like and the challenges he faces.

Additional Information:

Offsite Cow Camps are available for groups of 15 or more, schools, community organizations, special events, etc. Call the Ranger Station for more information.

Participation Requirements

 

Coffee in the Campground @ Dr. Julian G. Bruce St. George Island State Park

Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 9:00am to 11:00am EST

Free with regular park admission.

More Information:
Melody Brennan, (850) 927-2111 Melody.Brennan@dep.state.fl.us

Located in the Northwest region at:
Dr. Julian G. Bruce St. George Island State Park
1900 E. Gulf Beach Drive
St. George Island, FL 32328

A Park Ranger or volunteer will give interpretive programs on many topics which may include Apalachicola Bay seafood, panhandle seashells, campfire cooking, flora and fauna of St. George Island, birding and sea turtles.

Additional Information:

Participation Requirements

Bringing a breakfast related dish is welcomed.

Coffee is provided by the Friends of Franklin County State Parks.

The Coffee in the Campground is held in the interpretive building in the family campground.

 

Kayaking for Beginners - Main Entrance @ Silver Springs State Park

Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 9:00am to 10:30am EST

$25.00 per person includes the cost of a single or tandem kayak rental. $2.00 per person park admission fee not included.

To purchase tickets in advance contact brian@silversprings.com

More Information:
Call the park concessionaire at 352-261-5842 or email brian@silversprings.com

Located in the Central region at:
Silver Springs State Park
1425 NE 58th Avenue
Ocala, FL 34470

Escape the hustle and bustle of every day life with a guided paddling tour on the Silver River. Participants will learn the basic skills and techniques of kayaking as well as how to stay safe on the river.

Additional Information:

Enter the park through the main entrance located at 5656 East Silver Springs Boulevard (State Road 40).

For more information about concessions visit www.silversprings.com

Participation requirements.

Historic Farmstead Tour @ Dudley Farm Historic State Park

Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 10:00am to 11:00am EST

Regular park entrance fee of $5.00 per car.  Honor box, cash only.

More Information:
Sandra Cashes, (352) 472-1142, sandra.cashes@dep.state.fl.us

Located in the Northeast region at:
Dudley Farm Historic State Park
18730 W. Newberry Road
Newberry, FL 32669

Take a walk with a ranger or volunteer docent around the farmstead. Learn about pioneer family life, and the workings of a historic farm. We provide a public tour on the fourth Saturday of each month October - May, excluding February. Tour begins at the Visitor Center.

For pictures and more details, download the event flyer.

Additional Information:

Participation requirements.

Black Island Bike Tour @ Lovers Key State Park

Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 10:00am to 11:30am EST

Free with regular park admission

More Information:
Ranger Station, 239-463-4588

Located in the Southwest region at:
Lovers Key State Park
8700 Estero Blvd.
Fort Myers Beach, FL 33931

Join a Park Naturalist for a three-mile adventure down our Black Island Trail.  Learn a little park history and experience some of the wildlife that call this maritime hammock home.  Bring your own bike or rent one from the park concession.  Due to limited space, reservations are required.  

Additional Information:

Participation Requirements

Critter Crafts for Kids @ Oscar Scherer State Park

Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 10:00am EST

There is no cost to participate other than normal park entrance fees for day-use visitors.

More Information:
Ranger Station 941-483-5956

Located in the Southwest region at:
Oscar Scherer State Park
1843 South Tamiami Trail
Osprey, FL 34229

This weekly program features different arts and craft opportunities for kids.  A Volunteer will be on-hand in the Nature Center to instruct and provide the materials but parents are asked to remain with their child throughout the program; parents are welcome to participate as well.  Supplies and seating is limited, so participation is on a first-come, first-served basis.

Additional Information:

Participation Requirements

Family Challenge Saturdays @ Topsail Hill Preserve State Park

Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 9:00am to 2:00pm CST

Standard park admission fees apply however there are no additional fees for programming.

More Information:
Ranger Station 850-267-8330

Located in the Northwest region at:
Topsail Hill Preserve State Park
7525 W. Scenic Highway 30A
Santa Rosa Beach, FL 32459

Topsail Hill Preserve State Park invites you to enjoy our Family Challenge Saturdays.  Each Saturday of the month we invite visitors to come and participate in our “Geocache Topsail “& “Topsail Photo Scavenger Hunt” programs.  You may choose to do one or both programs and return to the camp store to pick up a surprise at the end of your visit.  Enter the park through the main gate and park staff will direct you to the camp store to pick up your program packets, you will need a gps or a smart phone capable of gps as well as a camera or smart phone for pictures. 

Additional Information:

Participation Requirements

Santa's Enchanted Spring - Main Entrance @ Silver Springs State Park

Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 11:00am to 2:00pm EST

Free with regular park admission. Children five and under admitted free.

More Information:
Call Silver Springs Management, LLC. at 352-261-5840

Located in the Central region at:
Silver Springs State Park
1425 NE 58th Avenue
Ocala, FL 34470

Skip the long lines at the mall and see Santa at Silver Springs. Get a photo taken with the beautiful springs as the backdrop.

Additional Information:

Enter the park through the main entrance located at 5656 East Silver Springs Boulevard (State Road 40).

Concession services are provided through a public-private partnership with Silver Springs Management, LLC. For more information, visit their website.

Participation requirements.

Tram Tour @ Oscar Scherer State Park

Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 1:30pm EST

The cost to ride the tram is $5.00/person, plus normal entrance fees.

Children under 5 ride free with a paid adult.

More Information:
Ranger Station: (941) 483-5956

Located in the Southwest region at:
Oscar Scherer State Park
1843 South Tamiami Trail
Osprey, FL 34229

Join our knowledgeable and enthusiastic Park Rangers on a tram tour through the park trails to discover the secrets of Oscar Scherer State Park! Parking is available at the Nature Center and participants are asked to meet at the Nature Center promptly at 1:30 p.m. Seating on the tram is on a first-come, first-served basis, limited to 25 people. Make sure to arrive early to reserve the best seats - accommodations for two wheelchairs are also available.

Additional Information:

Participation Requirements

Sunset Kayak Tour - Main Entrance @ Silver Springs State Park

Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 3:00pm to 5:15pm EST

$35 per person includes kayak rental, single or tandem. $30 for students with valid student ID. $2.00 per person park admission fee not included.

To purchase tickets in advance contact brian@silversprings.com

More Information:
Call the park concessionaire at 352-261-5842 or email brian@silversprings.com

Located in the Central region at:
Silver Springs State Park
1425 NE 58th Avenue
Ocala, FL 34470

Paddle into the sunset by kayak on the scenic Silver River. Before it gets dark you will visit springs with names such as the Blue Grotto, the Garden of Eden, Fisherman's Paradise, and the Alligator Hole. On the way back to the launch, west along the river, the sun will be setting behind the headsprings.

Additional Information:

Enter the park through the main entrance located at 5656 East Silver Springs Boulevard (State Road 40).

For more information about concessions visit www.silversprings.com

Participation requirements.

Ranger Program - Museum Area @ Silver Springs State Park

Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 5:00pm EST

Free with regular park admission.

More Information:
Call the ranger station 352-236-7148 ext. 4

Located in the Central region at:
Silver Springs State Park
1425 NE 58th Avenue
Ocala, FL 34470

Every Saturday, a ranger will present a program on a different topic at the Silver River Museum & Environmental Education Center. Examples of programs include "Weavers in the woods," "What's that sound?," "Pioneer survival," as well as programs on topics such as fire, gopher tortoises and more. For the specific topic or program for the coming weekend, please contact the ranger station.

Additional Information:

Enter the park through the Camping & Museum Entrance, 1425 NE 58th Avenue, (also known as State Road 35 or Baseline Rd.) to access the Silver River Museum.

For more information about the Silver River Museum visit their website.

Participation requirements.

Holiday Light Show @ Ravine Gardens State Park

Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 6:30pm to 7:30pm EST

Free with regular park entry fees: ($2 per person for walk-ins, $4 per vehicle drive-in with one person, and $5 per vehicle drive-ins with 2-8 people).

More Information:
Park Office, 386-329-3721

Located in the Central region at:
Ravine Gardens State Park
1600 Twigg Street
Palatka, FL 32177

Visit the park after dark!  Ravine Gardens is excited to display our Christmas light show synchronized to holiday music.  Enjoy the gardens lit up in color, stay for one song or for the whole show!  Feel free to bring your own lawn chair or blanket and have fun at this family-friendly event.

Additional Information:

Participation Requirements

Campfire Program @ Oscar Scherer State Park

Saturday, December 24, 2016 - 7:00pm EST

This after hours program is open to registered campers only and free to participate.

More Information:
Ranger Station 941-483-5956

Located in the Southwest region at:
Oscar Scherer State Park
1843 South Tamiami Trail
Osprey, FL 34229

Come sit around the campfire and find out about the amazing world around you.  This informative family-friendly program takes place in the best classroom---the outdoors with the theme changing weekly! The wheelchair accessible campfire circle is located between sites 35 and 36. Held in the Nature Center if inclement weather.  

Additional Information:

Participation Requirements