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Are you looking for a way to get involved with your local national park this summer? Then lend a hand to Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore (National Lakeshore). Two different Saturday workdays will be offered as a way to involve visitors and community members in projects that also help them learn about different invasive plants impacting the park, local communities, and region. The National Lakeshore encourages all who are interested in assisting with park conservation to attend the workdays.
As part of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI), Interpretive Park Ranger Ryan Locke and other National Lakeshore staff will lead the workshops that focus on how invasive plants are affecting natural and cultural resources. They will also provide information about native plants and animals found along the Lake Michigan shoreline. The GLRI continues to fund many ecological restoration projects around the Great Lakes, including those at the National Lakeshore. In addition, the GLRI has an educational component intended to inform the public about the threats posed to the Great Lakes by invasive species.
The National Lakeshore restoration project dates and times are as follows:
Saturday, June 30 (9:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.): Baby's breath (and spotted knapweed) removal at Peterson Beach. Meet at the visitor center in Empire.
Saturday, July 28 (9:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.): Honeysuckle removal at Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive. Meet at the visitor center in Empire.
No reservations are needed. Participants will sign up as volunteers and will not need a park pass to participate in this activity. When planning to attend a workday, be prepared for all kinds of weather by dressing appropriately, including wearing closed-toed shoes and long pants. Also, remember to bring water, sunscreen, and bug spray. For more information about the schedule, meeting locations, or National Lakeshore activities, please call the visitor center at 231-326-5135, ext. 328, or visit their website at www.nps.gov/slbe.