• Whiskeytown Lake from the Davis Gulch Trail

    Whiskeytown

    National Recreation Area California

Happy Birthday NPS!

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Date: August 4, 2012

Whiskeytown National Recreation Area will celebrate the 96th birthday of the National Park Service by hosting multiple youth and family activities on Saturday, August 25. Activities include free swim lessons, Jr. Ranger and Jr. Firefighter programs, Walk in Time programs, free kayak tours and participation in French Gulch Olde West Day.

The National Park Service was established on August 25, 1916. The United States was the first country in the world to set aside its most significant places as national parks so that all could enjoy them. Today, we care for 397 national parks throughout the country - each one an important part of our collective identity. Some parks commemorate notable people and achievements, others conserve magnificent landscapes and natural wonders, and all provide a place to have fun and learn something. Plan your visit at www.nps.gov/findapark.

"Birthdays are a time to celebrate and we want everyone, especially the children of America, to join the party," said Whiskeytown Superintendent Jim Milestone. "Hike a trail to a waterfall, swim in Whiskeytown's cool clear waters, or take part in one of the programs offered by rangers, firefighters, or lifeguards."

Activities offered Saturday August 25, 2012:

The lifeguard staff at Brandy Creek Beach will provide free basic swimming and water safety instruction for children ages four through 12. The 20-minute long classes are first come first serve and limited to 10 participants for each class. The class times are 11am and 11:30 am. The classes will be taught in English and Spanish. The classes will be at beach "A" at Brandy Creek Beach. Swimmers and their parents should bring a swimsuit, towel, appropriate footwear and sunscreen.

Children and adults (geared for ages 6 to 12) can learn about preserving and protecting park resources while making new friends during the Junior Ranger program. Meet at 10 am at the Oak Bottom Amphitheater (1 hour). Join National Park firefighters to learn how they manage fire to promote forest health and protect lives and property during the Junior Firefighter program. Meet at 11 am at the Oak Bottom Amphitheater (1 hour).

Daily free Kayak Tours are offered at 9:30 am and 6 pm. An additional 12:30 pm tour is offered on Saturday and Sunday (2.5 hours). Children must be at least 6 years old. Reservations are required; call (530)242-3462 up to two weeks in advance.

The popular Walk in Time program will also be offered at 10am, 11 am, 1 pm and 3 pm. Discover how pioneers/prospectors Charles Camden and Levi Tower reshaped the landscape to create a home for their families and an "oasis" for many travelers during and after the California Gold Rush. After a tour of the Camden house, built in 1852, try your hand at finding gold the old-fashioned way using a gold pan in the creek! Meet the ranger at the Tower House Historic District parking lot near the bulletin board.

Whiskeytown rangers and volunteers will also be participating in French Gulch Olde West Days. This day full of activities will begin at 8 a.m. in French Gulch and includes a pancake breakfast, parade, trick shooting, gold panning, and many other activities.

The mission of the National Park Service extends beyond parks into communities across the country where we work with partners to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. To see what we do here in California, go to www.nps.gov/CA.

For more information about Whiskeytown National Recreation Area, please visitor our website at www.nps.gov/whis.

-NPS-

Did You Know?

Phantom Orchid

Whiskeytown has phantom orchids (Cephalanthera austiniae)? They are all white and devoid chlorophyll. This means that it cannot make energy for itself and must rely on symbiotic mycorrhizae for its nutrition.