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Registration Opens this Month for Dutchess County Parks' Spring Naturalist Programming

Published: 3/9/2021

For More Information Contact:

Colleen Pillus, Communications Director
(845) 486-2000

Poughkeepsie… Registration opens this month for a variety of popular — and some new — Dutchess County Parks’ naturalist classes. From painters and nature-seekers to amateur archers and survivalists, there will be a wide range of programming for all to enjoy at Bowdoin Park this spring season.

Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro said, “As spring approaches, we are excited to see the return of some of our most popular programming, as well as some exciting new offerings, with our Parks Naturalists. I encourage everyone to take advantage of the opportunity to get outdoors and discover some safe fun at our beautiful Bowdoin Park.”

All Dutchess County Parks programs follow State social distancing guidelines.

Visit DutchessNY.Gov/ParksEducation for upcoming program information and registration.

The Spring Naturalist Program schedule is as follows:

The spring season kicks off with The Park Palette Art Series for ages 10-18. These classes take students through a step by step learning opportunity to create nature themed paintings. Students can choose one workshop or take all three. Registration opens March 9th and costs $5, with an additional $7 fee for supplies. Classes are 3:30-5pm in Pavilion 5. Sessions are limited to 12 participants.

  • Thursday, April 1 – Once Upon a Starry Night
  • Thursday, April 15 – Diving Deep Turtle
  • Thursday, April 29 – Sweet Skunk

The Eaglet Nature Program returns for youth ages five to seven along with their parents or caregivers. Through interactive exploration and play, children will have the opportunity to take a closer look at the unique natural habitats, with each week focusing on a different topic with a craft being made at the end of the class.  All classes will be offered 3:30-4:45 p.m., beginning at Bowdoin Park’s Nature Education Center. Registration is $5 per child and opens March 9th. Sessions limited to 12 participants.

  • Tuesday, April 6 – Discover Animal Dens
  • Tuesday, April 20 – Exploring Hudson River’s Shore
  • Tuesday, May 4 – Life of a Plant
  • Tuesday, May 18 – Pond Exploration 

Weekend Public Archery sessions begin Saturday, April 10. The archery program consists of five classes, held on Saturdays, with various time slots offered. The sessions, each an hour long, are designed for children ages 8 and up, and adults with any level of archery experience. Basic hands on archery skills are taught as well as bow and arrow safety. Registration opens March 16th, costs $60 per person and includes all five classes and equipment. Session time slots are limited to 10 participants.

  • Saturday, April 10
  • Saturday, April 24
  • Saturday, May 8
  • Saturday, May 22
  • Saturday, June 5

Time Slots

  • 10-11 a.m.
  • 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
  • 2-3 p.m.
  • 3:30-4:30 p.m.
  • 5-6 p.m.

Dutchess County Parks newest naturalist program Intro Adult Survival 1 will be held Saturday, May 15 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. at Bowdoin Park. This immersive one-day program is for ages 18 and up and covers the basics of survival education, including how to build several types of shelters and build a fire from scratch. This session is limited to 12 participants. Registration is $40 per person and opens March 30th.

This program is a prerequisite for Adult Survival 2, which will be a weekend overnight session June 19-20 at Wilcox Memorial Park in Milan. Adult Survival 2 goes deeper into wilderness survival education, including testing skills in an open campout setting. Adult Survival 2 registration will open on Monday, May 17 and is $40 per person.

Group weekday Archery, Junior Survival and Adventure Training is also available by appointment only and reservations can be made by calling 845-298-4602.