Here’s a glimpse of some of the events going on this month at Dunes State Park:
- Bring the little ones to the new Nature Storytelling Hour on select Thursdays in December. This free hour of stories and songs will help your small child explore and interact with elements of nature and the outdoors. Each session is free (Dec. 5, 12, 19) but requires registration by calling the nature center at (219) 926-1390
- Beach Glass Jewelry Workshops return to the Indiana Dunes State Park. Call now to get a spot for one of three workshops being offered on Sunday, Dec. 22. For $5, you can learn the art of wire wrapping and get a chance to make a couple keepsakes to give as a holiday gift or keep for yourself. Call the nature center (219-926-1390) to register for the 11am, 1pm, or 3pm session.
- An annual tradition has taken on a life of its own in the state park. Gather your family at the nature center for the 6th Annual Christmas Eve Shopping Stroll. Nearly a hundred people are expected to join for a hike to the Beach House Blowout at 10 a.m. on Dec. 24, then wander our way back to the Wilson Shelter for free cocoa, coffee, cookies, and other treats alongside a blazing fire. Program donations were made by the Friends of Indiana Dunes and Porter Hospital.
- Registration is now online for the winter charter bus tour, Feb. 28 – March 2, 2014. Join together for a weekend getaway to beautiful McCormick’s Creek State Park. Those who sign up will stay two nights in the Canyon Inn and visit the annual Goose Pond Marsh Madness Festival. Price for the weekend trip (including meals, lodging, and guided experts) is $339/per person double occupancy. Reserve by calling 1-877-LODGES1 with group code 0228DT. Call the nature center for more information.
In addition to the Dunes State Park Events, this is a great time to view sandhill cranes at Jasper-Pulaski Fish & Wildlife Area. Sandhill cranes can be seen through December. The best times are at sunrise and sunset. Here are the latest sandhill crane counts:
11/26/2013: 21,074 cranes
11/19/2013: 15,372 cranes
11/12/2013: 10,265 cranes