Education Programs & Events

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CAMP FULL: Right on Target Archery Camp at Rye Preserve

June 17-14
$125

Paddleboard Camp at Robinson Preserve
8:30 am -12:30 pm

Session 3: July 8-12
$125 | Ages 8-13

Sun and Fun Saltwater Fishing Camp at Emerson Point Preserve

Session 1: June 18-22
WEEK FULL: Session 2: July 23-27
$150

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EcoEvents: Outdoor Education Programs & Events Calendar

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June Calendar of Events

Download a printable version of the June Calendar of Events

Saturday 15th, 8:00 AM – 2:00 PM – SEAGRASS SURVEY AND FESTIVAL – Seagrass beds are teeming with life! Join us for the 5th Annual Sarasota County Seagrass Survey at the Sarasota Sailing Squadron. The Seagrass Survey is a FREE, citizen-science event that encourages community members to explore the beautiful and mysterious seagrass habitats. The Seagrass Survey is from 8 AM – 12 PM (sign-in/packet pick-up for registered volunteers begins at 7:30am). Afterward, stay for a nature festival back on land and visit our booth. This family-friendly festival will feature hands-on activities, music, food, and more from 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM and is OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. Festival suitable for all ages. To register or for more information visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/2019-seagrass-survey-registration-55079708892 Sarasota Sailing Squadron

Saturday 15th, 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM – SUMMER SATURDAYS AT THE NEST – Join us at the new Mosaic Center for Nature, Exploration, Science and Technology for a morning of exploration. Walk the grounds of the historic Reasoner Tract and observe botanical giants collected from around the world. Explore the canopy boardwalk among the banyans, climb to the top of the crow’s nest, take in breathtaking panorama views, and make an exciting exit from the building via slide. Learn about upcoming programs and exciting new additions to Robinson Preserve. Suitable for all ages. No reservations required. For more information please email ecoevents@mymantee.org Robinson Preserve – Mosaic NEST

Saturday 15th, 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM – PADDLING FROG CREEK & TERRA CEIA RIVER Join our nature guide from WayneAdventures as we explore mangrove islands/tunnels, restored salt water marshes and more isolated mangroves. Along the way, we will take water quality measurements and stop to discover why this is such a special place. We may not even see any other people during the paddle. This is for intermediate beginner paddlers who have paddled 6-8 miles. Launch is approx. 8200 Bishop Harbor Rd, Palmetto, FL 34221. GPS coordinates 27.5902222, -82.5544503 (grassy area along road). Program suitable for ages 16 and older who can meet the County's minimum eligibility requirements. Participants must have their own canoe or kayak and safety gear. All participants must wear a life jacket. Reservations are required. Please email ecoevents@mymanatee.org Bishop Harbor Rd at Frog Creek

Monday 17th – Friday 21st, 8:30 AM – 12:30 PM – PADDLEBOARD CAMP: SESSION 2 – Learn how to Stand-Up Paddleboard this summer, exploring nature while gaining skills on the board. Water safety, paddle technique, and balance will be taught in the calm smooth waters of the preserve all while learning about the local wildlife. This is a great way to spend the summer outdoors while building physical skills and confidence! Camp open to ages 8 and older. Register online at http://bit.ly/PNRDcamps or call 941-742-5923 for more information. $125 Camp Registration. Robinson Preserve

Tuesday 18th, 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM – BUILD AN OYSTER REEF AT PERICO PRESERVE – Join SBEP and Manatee County Parks and Natural Resources Department to bag oyster shell and build an oyster reef at Perico Preserve in Bradenton. The reef will provide habitat for wildlife, improve water quality, and stabilize shorelines in the preserve. This work will be tough, but very rewarding. Suitable for volunteers ages 12 and older. Registration is required online at https://2019pericooysterreef.eventbrite.com Perico Preserve

Thursday 20th, 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM – COQUINA COASTAL CLEANUP – Time to save the seas! Grab your gloves, hat, and sunscreen – we'll provide the trash bags and grabbers – and take an active role in helping the environment. Your hard work will help keep the beaches beautiful and the wildlife safe. This is a great opportunity for teens looking to earn volunteer hours. Program suitable for volunteers of all ages. Please let us know if you would like to attend by emailing michelle.leahy@mymanatee.org or calling 941-742-5923 ext. 6035. Coquina Beach

Saturday 22nd, 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM – SUMMER SATURDAYS AT THE NEST – Join us at the new Mosaic Center for Nature, Exploration, Science and Technology for a morning of exploration. Walk the grounds of the historic Reasoner Tract and observe botanical giants collected from around the world. Explore the canopy boardwalk among the banyans, climb to the top of the crow’s nest, take in breathtaking panorama views, and make an exciting exit from the building via slide. Learn about upcoming programs and exciting new additions to Robinson Preserve. Suitable for all ages. No reservations required. For more information please email ecoevents@mymantee.org Robinson Preserve – Mosaic NEST

Sunday 23rd, 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM – PADDLING ANNA MARIA TO PASSAGE KEY – Experienced paddlers will enjoy a guided open water trip by WayneAdventures to Passage Key National Wildlife Refuge to explore the waters between Anna Maria and Passage Key where dolphins, rays and sharks are often seen. Adults with prior open water experience, rescue skills and appropriate kayak are welcome. This area is subject to currents and winds. Program suitable for experienced paddlers ages 18 and older who can meet the County's minimum eligibility requirements. Participants must have their own canoe or kayak and safety gear. All participants must wear a life jacket. Reservations are required. Please email ecoevents@mymanatee.org Anna Maria Bayfront Park

Tuesday 25th, 2:00 PM – 4:30 PM - PRESERVE AMBASSADORS: EMERSON POINT PRESERVE – This course is designed to help volunteers learn more about Manatee County’s preserve system, transforming graduates of each class into ambassadors for the individual locations. This course focuses on Emerson Point Preserve’s history, habitats, and wildlife. All participants will receive a certificate of completion and pin for this course.  Program suitable for PNRD registered volunteers age 16 and older. Reservations are required. Please email  aedan.stockdale@mymanatee.org or call 941-748-4501 ext. 6039. Robinson Preserve - Mosaic NEST

Wednesday 26th, 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM – AQUATIC WILD EDUCATOR WORKSHOP – This FREE educational workshop will teach you how to use Florida’s water dwelling wildlife in exciting new lessons. The workshop will include activities to use with students along with your own copy of the AQUATIC WILD activity guide. Please pack a lunch. Workshop co-sponsored by Project WILD Florida. Program suitable for anyone 16 or older working with kids or interested in environmental education. Reservations are required.  Please let us know if you would like to attend by emailing coral.bass@mymanatee.org or calling 941-742-5923 ext. 6034. Robinson Preserve - Mosaic NEST

Thursday 27th, 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM – MOLLUSKS MONTHLY – Calling all beachcombers and seashell enthusiasts! Join us for a relaxing walk on the beach to search for seashells and learn to identify them. This program will explore what makes mollusks unique and bring you up to speed on the latest research in malacology. Learn about ethical seashell collecting methods while discovering a new appreciation for our beautiful shorelines. Program suitable for adults. Reservations are required. Please call 941-742-5923 ext. 6036 or e-mail elena.burke@mymanatee.org. Coquina Beach Café

Friday 28th, 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM – UPPER MANATEE RIVER – Add another section of Manatee's Blueway Trails to your bucket list. Join our nature guide from WayneAdventures who will lead a one-way, 6-mile, paddle from Rye Preserve to Fort Hamer boat ramp. Paddle down this meandering river as it winds for several miles through oak hammocks before joining with Braden River to form the Manatee River. While not for first time kayakers, beginning kayakers who can paddle 6-8 miles are welcome. Program suitable for ages 16 and older who can meet the County's minimum eligibility requirements. Participants must have their own canoe or kayak and safety gear. All participants must wear a life jacket. Reservations are required. Please email ecoevents@mymanatee.org. Rye Preserve

Saturday 29th, 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM – SUMMER SATURDAYS AT THE NEST – Join us at the new Mosaic Center for Nature, Exploration, Science and Technology for a morning of exploration. Walk the grounds of the historic Reasoner Tract and observe botanical giants collected from around the world. Explore the canopy boardwalk among the banyans, climb to the top of the crow’s nest, take in breathtaking panorama views, and make an exciting exit from the building via slide. Learn about upcoming programs and exciting new additions to Robinson Preserve. Suitable for all ages. No reservations required. For more information please email ecoevents@mymantee.org Robinson Preserve – Mosaic NEST

Saturday 29th, 8:00 PM – 10:00 PM – MOVIE NIGHT AT THE NEST: DISNEYNATURE OCEANS – Grab your lawn chairs and join us for an evening of film under the stars! This month we’ll be featuring Disneynature Oceans. Narrated by Pierce Brosnan, Oceans will take you on a journey in to the depths of a wonderland filled with mystery and beauty. Dive beneath the waves and see the world through eyes of fascinating underwater creatures! Be sure to bring a blanket or chairs to sit on. Program suitable for all ages. To register, call 941-742-5923 ext. 6036 or e-mail elena.burke@mymanatee.org. Robinson Preserve – Mosaic NEST


Kayaking with Manatee County

Participation Requirements for Manatee County Kayaks

In order to utilize one of Manatee County’s sit on top kayaks for a volunteer, Kayaking for Beginners, Kayaking for First Timers, or Beginner Level Kayak Trip, or to participate in any paddling program, participants:

  • Must be 16 years of age or older
  • Must not exceed the manufacturer’s weight limit for the vessel
  • Must have the ability to follow verbal and/or visual instructions independently while in the kayak
  • Must have the ability to respond to instructions and/or call out in the event of an emergency
  • Must have the ability to wear a properly fitted personal flotation device
  • Must have the ability to enter and exit the kayak independently or with the assistance of a companion
  • Must be able to move the kayak through the water independently in a stable manner and return it to the launching area
  • Must have the ability to breathe independently
  • Must have the ability to tolerate 60-80 degree Fahrenheit water and bright sunlight for 2 hours
  • Must have the ability to remain seated, maneuver, and balance independently while on the water

In order to utilize one of Manatee County’s sit on top kayaks for a summer camp program, participants:

  • Must be 9 years of age or older (note: age limit is lower as this program is specifically designed as a direct instructional for this age group; guide to paddler ratio is much lower)
  • Must not exceed the manufacturer’s weight limit for the vessel
  • Must have the ability to follow verbal and/or visual instructions independently while in the kayak
  • Must have the ability to respond to instructions and/or call out in the event of an emergency
  • Must have the ability to wear a properly fitted personal flotation device
  • Must have the ability to enter and exit the kayak independently or with the assistance of a companion
  • Must have the ability to breathe independently
  • Must be able to move the kayak through the water independently in a stable manner and return it to the launching area
  • Must have the ability to tolerate 60-80 degree Fahrenheit water and bright sunlight for 2 hours
  • Must have the ability to remain seated, maneuver, and balance independently while on the water

In the event of capsize for any program, one:

  • Must have the ability to get out from under the watercraft independently
  • Must have the ability to right oneself and remain face up in the water with the aid of a personal flotation device