July 2010 in Georgia State Parks

Amicalola Falls State Park & Lodge
Offers July “Unplug” Special

Unplug and reconnect with your family at this park with the Southeast’s tallest waterfall.  Enjoy rooms at $130 per night, breakfast for four, miles of hiking trails, ranger programs, a fishing pond and breathtaking mountain views. For reservations, call (800) 573-9656. http://www.gastateparks.org/Amicalola

Golf Fans, Save Big with an Annual GreensPass

Value-conscious golfers can save money with our annual GreensPass good at seven Georgia State Park golf courses. For $800, individuals or senior couples can enjoy unlimited rounds on courses known for exceptional scenery and maintenance, combined with a lack of crowds and surrounding subdivisions. Individual golfers 62 and older pay $700 for the year, and families pay just $1,000 for all members. Golf cart fees are not included. http://georgiagolf.com/GreensPass

JULY EVENT CALENDAR  —  divided by region

For an online calendar, visit www.GeorgiaStateParks.org/events.
You can also become a fan on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

NORTHERN GEORGIA

Visiting Artist Series at Unicoi

Saturdays, July 3, 10, 17, 24 and 31, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Sundays, July 4, 11, 18 and 25, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Unicoi State Park and Lodge – Helen

The program lasts each weekend from Memorial Day through mid-November. Several talented artists and craftspeople from Georgia and surrounding states will demonstrate and have samples of their work for sale. $5 parking. 800-573-9659 ext. 305.

Saturday Evening Concert Series

Saturdays, July 3, 10, 17, 24 and 31, 8 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Unicoi State Park and Lodge – Helen

Every Saturday from Memorial Day through mid-November. Some of the best musicians in the area perform a variety of music, from Appalachian Mountain to bluegrass to Southern gospel. “Pass-the-hat” donations. $5 parking. 800-573-9659 ext. 305.

Youth Fishing Days at Buck Shoals

Saturday, July 17, 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Smithgall Woods Conservation Park – Helen

Children and their special “big person” can fish in a lake stocked with catfish, bass, and bream. Fish caught can be kept. Bring your own bait and rods. Some rods are available for loan. Call for directions to “Buck Shoals.” $5 parking. (706) 878-3087.
Witch’s Head Excursion

Saturday, July 17, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Saturday, July 24, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Tallulah Gorge State Park – Tallulah Falls

This guided hike will take you to the bottom of the dam to view the witch’s head rock and enjoy a relaxing lunch. Bring lots of water, lunch and proper foot wear. $5 plus $5 parking. (706) 754-7981.

Snakes Alive
Saturday, July 17, 8 a.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Tugaloo State Park – Lavonia
This reptile program includes live snakes to view up close and personal.  Meet at the amphitheater to learn about venomous and non-venomous snakes found in north Georgia.  $5 parking.  (706) 356-4362.

Chief Vann House Days

Saturday, July 24, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Chief Vann House Historic Site – Chatsworth

Watch 1800s crafts demonstrations at the 1804 mansion of Cherokee Indian plantation owner James Vann. Cherokee tribal members along with local demonstrators show the art of blacksmithing, soap making, weaving, spinning, quilting, doll making, chair and basket weaving, pottery, and much more. $3.50–$5. (706) 695-2598.

Dahlonega Gold Museum

A Tribute To Georgia Authors

Saturday, July 24, 9 a.m.  – 4:45 p.m.

Dahlonega Gold Museum Historic Site – Dahlonega

Meet local and national authors who will bring their newest releases and older favorites. They will be glad to sign copies and add personal notes. $3.50- $5. (706) 864-2257.

Introduction to Nature Journaling

Saturday, July 24, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Smithgall Woods Conservation Park – Helen

Make a simple saddle-stitched booklet and learn techniques for recording your close encounters with nature. Artist Linda Lindeborg will help participants explore ideas for themed journals, learn basic drawing techniques, and investigate nature prints and rubbings. Then take a walk in the woods and do some sketching. Register by July 16. $25 plus $5 parking. (706) 878-3087.

Bat Blitz
Sunday, July 25, 6:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Fort Mountain State Park – Chatsworth
Kids of all ages can learn about these aerobatic mammals that eat mosquitoes and other insects.  Watch biologists as they net bats and teach about their fascinating wings and ears.  Browse bat displays and make bat crafts.  $5 parking.  (770) 918-6792.

Full Moon Suspension Bridge Hike

Sunday, July 25, 8:30 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.

Monday, July 26, 9 p.m. – 11 p.m.

Tallulah Gorge State Park – Tallulah Falls

Join Tallulah Rangers on a moonlit hike down into the gorge. Register in advance. $5 plus $5 parking. (706) 754-7981.

Folk Life Traditions

Friday, July 30, 8 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Saturday, July 31, 10 a.m. – 9 a.m.

Unicoi State Park and Lodge – Helen

Watch demonstrations of everything from spinning to candle dipping, to butter churning. Concerts will feature traditional Appalachian and old-time mountain music. Festivities will include mountain skills displays, concerts, and Appalachian-style community dancing. $5 parking. 800-573-9659 ext. 305.


Birds of Prey
Saturday, July 31, 8 p.m. – 9 p.m.
Tugaloo State Park – Lavonia
Meet at the amphitheater to learn about Georgia’s owls, hawks and other birds of prey.  $5 parking. (706) 356-4362.

SOUTHERN & CENTRAL GEORGIA

Thunder Over Thurmond
Saturday, July 10
Elijah Clark State Park – Lincolnton
Bring chairs, a blanket and the whole family for a picnic and swimming before the annual fireworks show, which is sponsored by Lincoln and McCormick counties.  Fireworks begin at dark. $5 parking.  (706) 359-3458.

Geology Hike
Saturday, July 17, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Providence Canyon State Park – Lumpkin
Join Professor Rich McWilliams of Thomas University from Thomasville, Georgia as he conducts a hike into the canyons so visitors will see one of the geologic wonders of the southeastern United States. Pre-registration is required due to limitations on group size.  $5 parking.  (229) 838-4706.

Ice Cream Social

Saturday, July 31, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

General Coffee State Park – Nicholls

Celebrate summer with boat races, ice cream social, old-fashioned kids games and more. $5-$6 plus $5 parking. (912) 384-7082.
METRO ATLANTA

Twilight Hike

Thursdays, July 1,8, 15, 22 and 29, 7 p.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

Join a park ranger on this guided hike when the days are long, and the temperatures cool just before sunset. This is the time when wildlife is most active. Register in advance. $7 plus $5 parking. (770) 389-7801.

Mountain Music Series
Saturdays, July 3, 10, 17, 24 and 31, 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Red Top Mountain State Park – Cartersville
Bring your instrument or just come listen.  Open jam is from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m., open stage is 6 – 8 p.m. and bluegrass concerts are at 8 p.m. Bring a lawn chair or blanket and have fun with the whole family.  $5 parking.  (770) 975-0055.

New Manchester History Hike

Saturdays, July 3, 10, 17, 24 and 31, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Sweetwater Creek State Park – Lithia Springs

This mile-long hike (easy to moderate) will lead us to the five story ruins of the Civil War-era New Manchester textile mill and focus on the history of the Sweetwater Creek Valley. This Historian or Ranger-led hike will include going inside the impressive mill ruins and seeing the lovely whitewater rapids (both providing great photo opportunities). $2-$3 plus $5 parking. (770) 732-5871.

Frog Slog

Tuesdays, July 6, 13, 20 and 27, 6 p.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

Investigate wetlands and streams in search of frogs and salamanders. Be prepared to get wet, muddy, and bring a flashlight and headlamp, nets, seines and buckets. Meet in the Alexander Lake parking area. Register in advance. $7 plus $5 parking. (770) 389-7801.

Backyard Birding

Saturday, July 10, 10 a.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

Bird watching is one of the fastest growing hobbies in the America. Around 60 million people feed birds in the USA. The only outdoor hobby that is more popular is gardening, and the two combine naturally. This program is designed to introduce you to the basics of attracting our flying friends to your backyard and some general ways to view birds and identify them. Meeting at the nature center. We recommend arriving 30 minutes before each program. Register in advance. $7 plus $5 parking. (770) 389-7801.

Wood Carving 101

Saturday, July 10, 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

During this introductory course, learn how to carve wood by hand, shaping it into art. The course will cover types of wood, carving tools and equipment, and hands-on instruction. Participants will carve in the round and relief. Meeting at the nature center. We recommend arriving 30 minutes before each program. Register in advance. $30 plus $5 parking. (770) 389-7801.

Lost Person Prevention

Saturday, July 10, 10 a.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

Learn simple techniques for not getting lost and keeping track of your family when venturing into the great outdoors of Georgia. Search and Rescue Dog Team will be joining the class unless a SAR activity is occurring. Meeting at the nature center. We recommend arriving 30 minutes before each program. Register in advance. $5 parking. (770) 389-7801.

Basic Fly Fishing Clinic

Saturday, July 10, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

The two-hour clinic covers equipment, knot tying, casting, safety issues and other tricks of the trade. If time permits participants may stay to catch the “Fish of Fish.” Instructors C. H. Brown and Michael Reilley suggest wearing long pants/shorts and hiking shoes, and bringing snacks, water and sun lotion. Georgia fishing license required. Register in advance. $15 or $12 with own gear. $5 parking. (770) 389-7801.

Mountain Top Night Hike

Saturday, July 10, 8 p.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

Listen to whippoorwills and owls as the sun slowly sets and the moon begins to rise. Panola Mountain is one of the best places to see the wildlife of the night and offers one of the best perches for viewing Atlanta’s skyline. Bring flashlights and comfortable clothing. Meeting at the nature center. We recommend arriving 30 minutes before each program. Register in advance. $7 plus $5 parking. (770) 389-7801.

Geology Hike

Saturday, July 10, 9 a.m. – 11 a.m.

Sweetwater Creek State Park – Lithia Springs

Geologist and “Friends of Sweetwater Creek State Park” member John Johnston will lead a moderate 2-mile hike identifying rock types and explaining how they formed. There will also be a visit inside the ruins of the Civil War era New Manchester Mill alongside the beautiful rapids of Sweetwater Creek. $5 plus $5 parking. (770) 732-5871.

Mountain Top Adventure Hike

Sunday, July 11, 2 p.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

These guided hikes depart from Panola’s nature center and are for people in good physical condition. This hike allows visitors to see Panola Mountain up close, as a ranger explains why the mountain is protected and what we can do to preserve granite outcrops. Bring sturdy shoes, water, bug spray and your camera. Rain or shine. Register in advance. $7 plus $5 parking. (770) 389-7801.

Fly Tying Clinic

Sunday, July 11, 2 p.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

Participants learn the art of fly tying as instructors introduce them to tools and techniques to create realistic flies. Will make one fly, possibly more if time permits. Ages 10 and older. Meeting at the nature center. We recommend arriving 30 minutes before each program. Register in advance. $25 plus $5 parking. (770) 389-7801.

Saturday Mountain Hike

Saturday, July 17, 10 a.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

These guided hikes depart from Panola’s nature center and are for people in good physical condition. This hike allows park visitors to see Panola Mountain up close, as the Ranger explains the reasons Panola Mountain is protected, and what we can all do to preserve the natural beauty of granite outcrops.  Bring sturdy shoes, water, bug spray, and your camera!  The Panola Mountain hike starts at 10am and generally lasts 3-4 hours.  Rain or shine. Call to register in advance. $7 plus $5 parking. (770) 389-7801.

Tree Top Excursions: Introduction Climb

Saturday, July 17, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

Join us “on rope” for an adventure exploring the canopy above. This is an introductory climb to Canopy-Adventure-Research-Educational Technical Tree Climbing (CARE TTC). Participants will use rope and harness for this moderately strenuous activity. Register in advance. $15 plus $5 parking. (770) 389-7801.

Road Bike Race

Saturday, July 17, 9 a.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

Join us for a 41-mile ride with a 23-mile option. We will be highlighting the Arabia Mountain Path and gently traveled country roads of Rockdale, Dekalb and Henry counties. Meet at the Alexander Lake Parking Area. We recommend arriving 30 minutes before each program. Register in advance. $5 parking. (404) 375-6789.

“Ruins to Rapids” Full Moon Hike

Saturday, July 24, 8 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Sweetwater Creek State Park – Lithia Springs

This 1.5 mile ranger-guided night hike is moderately difficult and goes inside the Civil War-era textile mill ruins of New Manchester and follows the lovely rapids (up to class IV) of Sweetwater Creek. The hike will continue if it is overcast but will be postponed until the following night if raining. Bring a flashlight and sturdy shoes. No children under 6 or dogs. Limited to 50 people; phone registration in advance required. $5 plus $5 parking. (770) 732-5871.

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