Albany Pine Bush News

ALBANY NY – The Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission will host its eighth annual Lupine Fest on Saturday, May 17, 2014 from 10:00AM to 4:00PM at the Discovery Center. In addition to celebrating the wildflower blue lupine and its importance to the endangered Karner blue butterfly, this year’s theme, “Dune” It All – Recreation In The Pine Bush, celebrates the many recreational opportunities that the Albany Pine Bush offers throughout the 3,200 acre Preserve. A full day of programs is planned including presentations, demonstrations, live music, games, face painting, crafts, guided hikes, pony rides, snacks and much more.

Christopher Hawver, Executive Director of the Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission said, “The Albany Pine Bush is one of only a few inland pitch pine – scrub oak pine barrens in the world and is considered the best remaining example. The rolling sand dunes of the Preserve with its 20 miles of trails provide opportunities for many different kinds of outdoor recreation. The Commission manages the Preserve with a focus on restoring and preserving this unique ecosystem, but it’s important to celebrate how recreation helps to bring people closer to nature and offers a better understanding of why it’s worthy of protection.”

“Visitors will get the chance to explore many of the different types of recreation that are possible in the Albany Pine Bush Preserve,” said Erin Kinal, Education Program Director. “The day will feature something for all ages including music by the Whippersnappers, a Storywalk®, kayaking lessons with LLBean, fishing, nature photography, orienteering lessons, a native plant gardening workshop and more!” The event will also include a fitness trail, pony rides for children, various talks covering topics like what kids should do if they are lost while playing outside and “Leaving No Trace” while hiking, as well as a pre-event 9:00am early morning dog walk.

According to Discovery Center Director Jeffrey Folmer, “This annual event draws hundreds of people to our state-of-the-art interpretive center. Here they learn all about the rich and truly amazing natural and cultural history of the Pine Bush as well as everything that makes this globally-rare Preserve so special, and they have fun doing it!”

Lupine Fest: “Dune” It All will offer fantastic family fun for all – rain or shine. The festival will be held at the Albany Pine Bush Discovery Center at 195 New Karner Road, Albany. Like Albany Pine Bush on Facebook or visit AlbanyPineBush.org for more details, and click on Events Calendar.

Located within New York’s Capital District, the Albany Pine Bush Preserve is one of only twenty inland pine barrens left in the entire world and widely considered to be the best example. The 3,200-acre Preserve is predominantly defined by gently rolling sand dunes that support an extraordinary fire-dependent habitat. Home to more than 55 New York State-designated Species of Greatest Conservation Need, including the federally endangered Karner blue butterfly, this globally-rare ecosystem also offers visitors 20 miles of trails for an assortment of non-motorized recreational opportunities including hiking, jogging, nature study, cross-country skiing, horseback riding, mountain biking, hunting, fishing and canoeing.

The Discovery Center is a state-of-the-art interpretive center that introduces visitors to everything that makes the Preserve rare and adventurous. As the gateway to the Pine Bush, this LEED Gold-certified “green” building transforms a visit to our unique destination into an even more exciting exploration where learning comes naturally through interactive exhibits, the interpretive Discovery Trail, and numerous programs on the ecology, natural history and cultural history of the Pine Bush. Admission to the Discovery Center is free (there is a small fee for programs). The Center is open DAILY weekdays 9AM-4PM, weekends 10AM-4PM (closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day). For more information, visit www.AlbanyPineBush.org or call 518-456-0655.

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