Connecting the environment of the ancient past with the natural and cultural history of yesterday and today.















 

 


2017 Park Programs

Activities last 1 to 2 hours

Begin at 2:00 PM unless noted

Free with regular interpretive Center admission

$2 pay-to-park in the Interpretive Center parking lot applies.

 

April 26                    Jeremy Beavin, Falls of the Ohio State Park    

Tree identification  

We will look at clues in bark, leaf and shape to identify trees common to Indiana woods. Naturalist Jeremy Beavin will lead. Program free with regular admission.

 

May 7                      Dale Brown, Falls of the Ohio State Park    

Basic Survival Packs for Campers & Hikers        

What do you need to survive an emergency when you go camping / hiking? There are some ‘essential items’ you should pack. Dale Brown will help you design a survival pack using the supplies he uses. He will also discuss walking in the woods

May 13                   Mike Linderman, Director of Angel Mounds State Historic Site

Exploring Glenn and Ida Black’s connection to Angel Mounds

 

The story of Glenn and Ida Black and their life during the time they were excavating at Angel Mounds, along the Ohio River near Evansville, Indiana through photos of the period. Sponsored by the Falls of the Ohio Archaeological Society.

May 27      3:00 PM   Alan Goldstein, Falls of the Ohio State Park paleontologist and naturalist

Ask the Paleontologist: A peek at the collections

Park paleontologist Alan Goldstein will bring out some rarely-seen fossils from the park’s collections ranging from 700 million to 10-thousand years ago. For comparison, the Falls of the Ohio fossils are from the Silurian and Devonian periods, 425 and 390 million years ago, respectively. Learn about the diversity of life preserved in Earth’s fossil record. It’s a great opportunity to ask the paleontologist questions and bring rocks you want identified! Location: Picnic area behind the Interpretive Center (lobby if there is inclement weather) between 3:00 and 4:00 PM.

May 28      3:00 PM   Alan Goldstein, Falls of the Ohio State Park 

Nature photography with a smart phone

Phones with built in cameras are becoming more popular than digital cameras for taking photos in nature. While the quality may not be as good, with a steady hand and some planning it doesn’t have to be bad.  Many times it’s the only option. Learn how to take pictures with a telescope and microscope.

May 29      3:00 PM    Dale Brown, Falls of the Ohio State Park 

Throw with an atlatl

Prehistoric darts were thrown with a throwing device called an atlatl. Learn about prehistoric hunters and practice hitting a target with a throwing dart. Meets in the picnic area, throwing area near levee.

June 7 & 10           Dr. Jay Stottman, Kentucky Archaeological Survey   

History beneath our feet:  Archaeology of the Falls Region 

This is an overview of what archaeologists do and how we learn about the past of people and their culture.  What do archaeologists study in our area? What we have learned about our history and culture from archaeology?  These questions will be answered relating to the study of prehistoric Native Americans, historic period American settlement and development, and archaeology's role in our present day culture.  The main focus is the historic time period, the speaker’s specialty, and the various sites he worked on over the last twenty years.

June 10    10:00 AM          Alan Goldstein, Falls of the Ohio State Park paleontologist and naturalist

Fossil Photography Class

Learn to take the most photogenic fossils exposed today. Bring your camera. Discussion will including lighting, contrast, macrophotography, and more. Call 812-280-9970 to reserve your slot. Limited to 10 participants. $2 program fee, Interpretive Center admission is not included (but encouraged).

June 17                            Alan Goldstein, Falls of the Ohio State Park 

It’s sedimentary, my dear Rockson

A look at the sedimentary rocks of the Ohio Valley and the story of how they were formed. Which types have fossils? Which are barren? Caution: There may be some rocky humor!

June 24    11:00 AM      Jim Mead and Tom Bibb, Naturalist at Heart volunteer

GPS hike on the fossil beds

The Falls of the Ohio State Park has three web-based GPS hikes posted on the fallsoftheohio.org. Created by volunteers Jim Mead and Tom Bibb, in partnership with Indiana University Southeast’s Department of Informatics, these hikes allow visitors to explore the fossil beds using a GPS / smart phone. This hike will be guided by the GPS hike developers. Bring your GPS and follow along! Program is free.

June 24  & 25   10 to 4    George Rogers Clark Home Site 

Atlatl and tomahawk throwing

Prehistoric darts were thrown with a throwing device called an atlatl. Learn about prehistoric hunters and practice hitting a target with a throwing dart. Try your skill throwing a tomahawk at a wood disk. Other activities scheduled including cabin tours.

July 1      3:00 PM    Dale Brown, Falls of the Ohio State Park 

The world of fossils

Come see a display and discuss fossils from different time periods from around the world. Evidence of life from more than 600 million years ago to as recent as 10,000 year will be shown. Anyone under 18 will receive a free souvenir fossil.

July 8     12:00 PM      Paul Olliges, Naturalist at Heart volunteer

Falls overview

A review of the natural and cultural history of the Falls from the perspective of former volunteer of the year, Paul Olliges. Paul leads outer fossil bed hikes in September and October and has done a lot of reach to document the history of the Falls of the Ohio.

July 30    9:30 AM          Alan Goldstein, Falls of the Ohio State Park paleontologist and naturalist

Fossil Photography Class

Learn to take the most photogenic fossils exposed today. Bring your camera. Discussion will including lighting, contrast, macrophotography, and more. Call 812-280-9970 to reserve your slot. Limited to 10 participants. $2 program fee, Interpretive Center admission is not included (but encouraged).

August 23 & 26      Paul Olliges, Naturalist at Heart volunteer

Virtual tour on the outer fossil beds

Learn about the outer fossil bed experience from the air conditioned comfort of the Interpretive Center auditorium. If you want to experience the reality, hikes are scheduled in September and October, and this program will give you a great idea about what to expect.

Summer programs to be scheduled in the near future...

Watching the solar eclipse - Tom Bibb, Naturalist at Heart volunteer and amateur astronomer

Early 19th century gardening  at the George Rogers Clark home site - Master Gardeners at the Cabin

Advanced birding at the Falls - Del Striegel, Naturalist at Heart volunteer

Dinosaurs - Dale Brown, Falls of the Ohio State Park

Mushroom hikes at Perrin Park - Karen Maag, Naturalist at Heart volunteer

 

 

Consult the Volunteer page for other Naturalist at Heart classes that are open to the public.


Family Nature Club

One Sunday each month at 2:00 PM

See the "Kid's Page" for details.


Public Hikes on the Devonian Fossil Beds

Looking for fossils on the fossil beds

Begin every weekend Memorial Day through Labor Day weekend. Most at 1:00 PM. Consult our Facebook page.

 

Naturalist-led hikes are offered on the fossils on weekends from Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day Weekend. Roving naturalists on weekdays. Whether you are stalking crinoids, trekking for trilobites or creeping over corals, you can learn about the wonderful Devonian fossil beds and learn why they are unique in the world. We encourage you to come and visit the Interpretive Center before going outside.

Saturday hikes are available after Labor Day weekend and go through October November 1. At other times hikes can be scheduled by calling several days in advance.

When you can't come when there is a scheduled hike, we have roving volunteer naturalists who may be found on the fossil beds.  You can recognize one by looking for a brown vest with the Falls logo on the back, or a lanyard (hang-tag) with their name and "Naturalist at Heart" logo. You can also pick up a free "Discovering Fossils" brochure or download one from here.

Watch Facebook or call 812-280-9970 for times.


Outer Fossil Bed Hikes

 

September 9 & 23 and October 7 & 14, 2017

Departs from the deck at 9:30 AM

The outer fossils are one of the world's amazing excursions to see Devonian fossils in their natural "habitat." We can only offer hikes in the late summer and fall when the upper gates of the McAlpine Dam are closed. This hike is moderately rugged and without shade, so wear a hat and bring water. You will do a little wading, the worst is about 2-feet deep with a moderate current. There will be a lot of walking on uneven limestone ledges. Wear enclosed shoes for your safety.

Learn about the geology, history, and river dynamics & engineering of the lock & dam and 1870 railroad bridge. You will see birds and other wildlife on this outing.

Hike lasts about 3 1/2 hours. Meets on the deck. It is geared for adults and children 12 and over. Show up with enough time to sign a liability release form and use the rest rooms in the Interpretive Center before you go outside to explore.

Hike depends on river level and weather conditions.

Contact us the day before at 812-280-9970.

 

Brian Vance and Paul Olliges lead hikes on fossil beds

Secret cache of fossils will be shown on this hike to explain the ancient life that created the fossil beds.


Canoe Hikes

Will be scheduled for Late Summer - Early Fall 2017

Canoe hike on the Indian Chute channel at the Falls of the Ohio.

Paddle the falls and discover a very pleasant way to discover wildlife and seldom-seen fossils.

Canoe or kayak with Falls of the Ohio interpretive naturalist Jeremy Beavin in the unique Falls of the Ohio National Wildlife Conservation Area.

Meet at the boat ramp on Harrison Avenue, in Clarksville, by 9:30 a.m.

We will paddle into the Conservation Area, hike a bit on the outer fossil beds and plan to

return around noon. Call on Friday (812) 280-9970, to make sure the river level is safe

for boating. Bring your own canoe or kayak and PFD (life jacket), water to drink, and

sun protection. Children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult.

Outings launch from the GRC Boat Ramp 1204 W. Harrison Avenue.
 

         Paddling below the George Rogers Clark home site cabin.

 

         Paddling below the Clark Cabin

 

Updated April 26, 2017