Below is the May 2013 calendar from Georgia’s State Parks & Historic Sites. More information on events, accommodations and recreation can be found at GeorgiaStateParks.org or 1-800-864-7275. For a complete calendar, visit GeorgiaStateParks.org/events.  You can also become a fan on Facebook , follow us on Twitter and sign up for our monthly newsletter. Thank you for helping promote Georgia’s natural and historic resources! 

May 2013 Events – Divided By Region

NORTH GEORGIA

Atlanta Audubon Society Bird Walk

Saturday, May 11, 12 p.m. – 2 p.m.

Fort Yargo State Park – Winder

Fort Yargo has some great habitat, including marshland, mixed hardwood Forest, and an expansive open lake. We will look for a variety of birds like woodpeckers, warblers, and wading birds. Learn about the Atlanta Audubon Society, and how you can get involved in bird watching, as well as land conservation. $5 parking. (770) 867-3489.

CCC Reunion/Trail Project

Saturday, May 11, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Vogel State Park – Blairsville

Join the boys of “The Tree Army” as they tell stories of the New Deal era. This is a covered-dish meal with meat and drinks provided by the Vogel Volunteers. Also join the Georgia Appalachian Trail Club for a service project like one that would have been done during “The Great Depression”. Work begins at 9:00 am and CCC Reunion begins at 11:00 am. RSVP required. (706) 745-2628.  

Twisted Ankle Marathon

Saturday, May 18

James H. (Sloppy) Floyd State Park – Summerville

The Twisted Ankle Marathon and Half Marathon is a hilly, technical run through the park and along Taylor’s Ridge in the Chattahoochee National Forest. There is also a Kid’s Fun Run on the day of the event – an enjoyable way to participate in National Kids to Parks Day. Fees. $5 parking. (706) 857-0826.

175 Years: Cherokee Trail of Tears Memorial Service

Saturday, May 18, 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.

New Echota Historic Site – Calhoun

In May 1838, State Militia and Federal Troops started the removal of Cherokee Indians from their homeland in Georgia and surrounding states. Join us for a memorial service including speakers from the Cherokee Nation, Eastern Band of Cherokee, United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee and National Trail of Tears Association. Participating will be Tommy Wildcat, All Nations Warrior Society Honor Guard, Medicine Ridge Singers, Sammy Still and Jack Baker. $5-$6.50 (free for service only) (706) 624-1321. 

Youth Fishing Days at Buck Shoals

Saturday, May 18, 8 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Smithgall Woods State Park – Helen

Children and their special “big person” can fish in a lake stocked with catfish, bass and bream. Fish caught can be kept. Bring your own bait (no corn) and rods. This event is not at Smithgall Woods, but at Buck Shoals, a nearby, unopened state park. Call for directions. Occurs every third Saturday through September. $5 parking. (706) 878-3087.

Tugaloo’s National Kids Park Day

Saturday, May 18, 11 a.m.

Tugaloo State Park – Lavonia

Celebrate getting outdoors and join us for these kid friendly programs. 11:00 am ‘Water Exploration’ see what critters live in Lake Hartwell. Met at the Amphitheater and wear shoes that can get wet. 1:00 pm ‘Snakes Alive’ at the Nature Hut. 3:00 pm ‘Putt-Putt Tournament’ at the Mini Golf Course by the beach. Tournament is for kids 12 and under. $5 Putt-Putt Tournament $5 parking. (706) 356-4362.

Junior Fishing Rodeo

Saturday, May 18, 9 a.m. – 11 a.m.

Victoria Bryant State Park – Royston

Registration will begin at 8:30 am. We will hold the Rodeo at the back pond. It is for children ages 16 yrs. or younger. All participates must be registered or in line to register by 9:00 am to be eligible for prizes. $5 parking. (706) 245-6270.

Full Moon Suspension Bridge Hike

Friday, May 24, 8:15 p.m. – 10:15 p.m.

Saturday, May 25, 9:30 p.m. – 11:30 p.m.

Tallulah Gorge State Park – Tallulah Falls

Take a mile and a half hike under the full moon. $5 plus $5 parking. (706) 754-7981.

Memorial Day Blast

Friday, May 24, 8 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Saturday, May 25, 1 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Sunday, May 26, 1 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Monday, May 27, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Unicoi State Park and Lodge – Helen

Join in on sack races, field-day activities, hayrides, a campfire, a music concert and hoedown. $5 parking. (706) 878-2201 ext. 305.

 

Exploring Mushrooms

Saturday, May 25, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Smithgall Woods State Park – Helen

Explore mushroom natural history, ecology, and lore with Dr. Julia Kerrigan, a mycologist at Clemson University and co-founder of the South Carolina Upstate Mycological Society (SCUMS). Begin in the classroom with an introduction to the kingdom Fungi followed by a walk exploring fascinating fungi in the forest and their roles in the ecosystem. Register in advance. $10 plus $5 parking. (706) 878-3087.

 

Holiday Gorge Floor Hike

Saturday, May 25 through Tuesday, May 28, 10:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Tallulah Gorge State Park – Tallulah Falls

This is a strenuous trek; include hiking down 531 stairs, a river crossing jumping from rock to rock, and climbing boulders along the side of the river to Bridal Veil Falls where you can swim. Total miles are 3.5. No pets; wear appropriate footwear; children must be 10 or older; bring food and water. Register in advance. $5 plus $5 parking. (706) 754-7981.

 

Southern Gospel Music

Saturday, May 25, 7 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Tugaloo State Park – Lavonia

The Southern Gospel group “Blood Bought” from Toccoa will be at the park’s Beach Pavilion for a night of fun and music. Bring your favorite camping chair and join us for a relaxing musical evening. $5 parking. (706) 356-4362.

 

Saturday Evening Concert Series

Saturday, May 25

Unicoi State Park and Lodge – Helen

Some of the best musicians in the area perform a variety of music from Appalachian Mountain, Bluegrass and Southern Gospel music. Saturdays at 8 p.m., Memorial Day Weekend through mid-November. These programs will be “pass-the-hat” donations for the musicians. $5 parking. 800-573-9659 ext. 305.

 

Visiting Artist Series

Saturday, May 25 through Sunday, May 26, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Unicoi State Park and Lodge – Helen

Each week a different artist or craftsperson will be demonstrating their art or craft and will have samples of their work for sale. The program lasts each weekend from Memorial Day through mid-November. $5 parking. (706) 878-2201 ext. 30

COASTAL GEORGIA

Family Nature Quest

Saturday, May 4, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Crooked River State Park – St. Marys

Want to learn about nature as a family? Come to our “fundana” activities each month and learn about a different topic. There will be 12 quests and at each program the family will receive one bandana about the topic. The family that completes the most quests will receive a bonus bandana for the entire family. Register in advance. $10 per family $5 parking. 912-882-5256.

 

Skidaway’s National Kids to Parks Day

Saturday, May 18, 2 p.m.

Skidaway Island State Park – Savannah

Celebrate National Kids to Parks Day by competing in a number of yard games, such as water balloon toss and sack races. $5 parking. (912) 598-2300.

 

War of Jenkins’ Ear

Saturday, May 25 through Monday, May 27, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.

Wormsloe Historic Site – Savannah

Wormsloe will commemorate Georgia’s role in the 1739-1748 war between Britain and Spain. A brief presentation at the Visitor Center will be followed by a walking tour of the site. The program will also include military drills and black powder weapons demonstrations. $4.50 – $10 (912) 353-3023.

 

Memorial Day Commemoration

Saturday, May 25, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Fort McAllister Historic Park – Richmond Hill

Help us pay tribute to our fellow patriots who served our country throughout the years. Cannon and musket firings, Civil War-era demonstrations, and lots of family fun. (912) 727-2339.

 

Memorial Day Commemoration

Monday, May 27, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Fort Morris Historic Site – Midway

This coastal fort will present hourly Revolutionary War soldier talks and musket and cannon demonstrations. $3-$4.50 (912) 884-5999.

SOUTHERN & CENTRAL GEORGIA

The Little Roy & Lizzy Music Festival

Wednesday, May 1 through Saturday, May 4, 12 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Elijah Clark State Park – Lincolnton

Little Roy and Lizzy return to Elijah Clark with some of the country’s best Bluegrass performers. Bring your lawn chairs. Enjoy the food and craft vendors. Fee. $5 parking. (706) 864-7203.

 

Twilight Paddle

Friday, May 3 through Saturday, May 4, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Friday, May 17, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Sunday, May 26 through Monday, May 27, 7 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Hard Labor Creek State Park – Rutledge

Explore Lake Rutledge on this ranger-guided twilight paddle. As we scan the sky for Ospreys and maybe an Eagle, and watch the changing colors on the water as the sunsets, we will interpret the role the CCC made in creating this great park in the 1930s. Meet at the Park Office/Trading Post. Register in advance. $15 plus $5 parking. (706) 557-3001.

 

Southern History Train Ride

Friday, May 3, 10 a.m. – 3:45 p.m.

SAM Shortline Excursion Train – Cordele

Explore history with a departure from Georgia Veterans State Park, followed by an hour layover in Archery at the boyhood farm of President Jimmy Carter.  Hop back on the train for a 10-minute ride into Plains for an hour and 20 minutes stop.  You will arrive back at Georgia Veterans with time to enjoy the park’s museum. 1-877-427-2457.

 

May Day Train Ride

Saturday, May 4, 9:45 a.m. – 3:35 p.m.

SAM Shortline Excursion Train – Cordele

Enjoy May Day Festivities at St. Mark A.M.E. Church.  Arriving at 12:30, you can have some lunch, hear choirs, view exhibitors making soap and other things.  Face painting and crafts.  Yes, there is the tradition of platting of the May Pole at 1:15 and speakers. 1-877-427-2457.

 

Bird Walk

Saturday, May 4, 9 a.m. – 10 a.m.

F.D. Roosevelt State Park – Pine Mountain

Stroll along the woodland edges to listen and look for feathered friends. Bring binoculars or share park loaners. Meet at the park office on Hwy 190. $5 parking. (706) 663-4858.

 

Atlanta Audubon Beginners Bird Walk

Saturday, May 4, 12 p.m. – 3 p.m.

Hard Labor Creek State Park – Rutledge

This field trip is designed for anyone interested in learning more about birds, habitats critical to some species, and organizations like the Audubon Society, which are dedicated to bird conservation. Meet at the Park Office/Trading Post. $5 parking. (706) 557-3001.

 

High Falls Historic Walk

Saturday, May 4, 10 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.

High Falls State Park – Jackson

Join our naturalist on a short walk and learn about the history of the once-prosperous town of High Falls. Hike also includes a rare chance to tour inside the old powerhouse, which provides great photo opportunities of the Towaliga River. Please wear sturdy shoes. Meet at the Visitor Center. $5 plus $5 parking. (478) 993-3053.

 

Roosevelt Day: Anniversary of the Little White House

Saturday, May 4, 9 a.m. – 4:45 p.m.

Roosevelt’s Little White House Historic Site – Warm Springs

In May of 1932, a housewarming party was thrown to celebrate the construction of FDR’s Little White House. Eighty years later, a series of guest speakers and special programs will be offered. $8-$12. (706) 655-5870.

 

Americus Adventure Train Ride

Friday, May 10, 9:30 a.m. – 4:50 p.m.

SAM Shortline Excursion Train – Cordele

Riding in air-conditioned, 1949 vintage train cars, you can travel across Lake Blackshear, tour Habitat for Humanity’s Global Village and sample peanut butter treats in Plains. Enjoy a mix of romantic yesteryear with the excitement of today’s South as the SAM Shortline Excursion Train runs from Cordele through Georgia Veterans State Park to Americus and Plains, then back. Groups and parties welcome. 1-877-427-2457.

 

Kids Fishing Derby

Saturday, May 11, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.

General Coffee State Park – Nicholls

Children ages 3-15 (accompanied by a parent or guardian) are invited to participate in the parks annual kids fishing derby. Prizes will be offered in various categories and age groups. Registration will be held the morning of the event. Donations appreciated. $5 parking. (912) 384-7082.

 

Wild Gourmet Dinner

Saturday, May 11

Mistletoe State Park – Appling

You never “sausage” a dinner as the one we’re planning this time! On the menu: rattlesnake sausage and venison sausage, smothered in gravy with acorn dumplings — a real taste treat. Come by and taste what everyone brings to this potluck treat where every dish has to contain at least one wild ingredient. $5 parking. (706) 541-0321.

 

New Moon Kayak Tour

Saturday, May 11, 7:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.

Hard Labor Creek State Park – Rutledge

Lake Rutledge is a great place to enjoy the night sky. Join this ranger-led tour of the lake and enjoy night sounds, star-gazing, and a relaxing time on the water. A new moon means that many stars will be visible on the nighttime paddle. Register in advance. $15 plus $5 parking. (706) 557-3001.

 

International Migratory Bird Day

Saturday, May 11, 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Reed Bingham State Park – Adel

Everyone knows about robins and geese migrating, but did you know that hummingbirds, vultures, and hawks migrate as well? Come learn about migratory birds with guided bird hikes, bird lectures, and crafts. $5 parking. (229) 896-3551.

 

Archery Explorer Train Ride

Saturday, May 11 and 25, 9:30 a.m. – 5:20 p.m.

SAM Shortline Excursion Train – Cordele

Riding in air-conditioned, 1949 vintage train cars, you will travel across Lake Blackshear to Plains and back. Explore President Jimmy Carter’s boyhood farm (Jimmy Carter National Historic Site), go shopping and sample peanut butter treats. Groups and parties welcome. 1-877-427-2457.

 

A Presidential Motorcade: Social Security Car Tour to Visit

Friday, May 17, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Roosevelt’s Little White House Historic Site – Warm Springs

More than 60 antique automobiles will be parked on the Little White House grounds for visitors to take a step back in time. The Social Security Car Tour features cars old enough to draw a Social Security card, if they could draw one. Car owners will be on hand to answer questions and show off their automobiles. $8-$12. (706) 655-5870.

 

The Dam Walk

Saturday, May 18, 10 a.m.

High Falls State Park – Jackson

Get up close and personal with the most predominant feature at High Falls State Park…the dam. Walk availability is dependent on river flow. No dogs. Must be 6 or older. Please wear durable shoes. $5 plus $5 parking. (478) 993-3053.

 

High Falls’ National Kids to Parks Day

Saturday, May 18, 10 a.m.

High Falls State Park – Jackson

Celebrate National Kids to Parks Day by competing in a number of fun activities including a miniature golf tournament, backyard Olympics, and wildlife trivia. $5 plus $5 parking. (478) 993-3053.

 

5K Road Kill Run

Saturday, May 18, 8 a.m.

Reed Bingham State Park – Adel

Stretch your legs and have fun. Meet at the Beach Pavilion to run in our 5k race around the beautiful park. The course is certified and will be professionally timed at the finish line. Register at the Visitor Center or at www.runningintheusa.com before May 12 or register at 7:00 a.m. the day of the race. $20 pre-register; $25 day of race. $5 parking. (229) 896-3551.

 

Jarrell Plantation’s National Kids to Parks Day

Saturday, May 18 through Sunday, May 19, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Jarrell Plantation Historic Site – Juliette

Learn what kind of life children had on the plantation. We will show you what kind of games they would have played and we will make one of the toys they would have played with in that time. $4-$6.50. (478) 986-5172.

 

75th Anniversary BBQ Dinner

Friday, May 24, 7 p.m.

F.D. Roosevelt State Park – Pine Mountain

75th Anniversary BBQ Dinner includes meal, seat in Group Shelter and Mystery Tree Program Presentation. Guest Speaker: Don Wells Author of the book Mystery Trees. The never-before-told story about the curious, oddly shaped “trail trees” that were used by Indians to guide themselves across the North American continent. $25. (706) 663-4858.

 

75th Celebration Activities

Saturday, May 25, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

F.D. Roosevelt State Park – Pine Mountain

Outside World Outfitters Boat Demo Day- 8:00am –Noon & 2pm- 6pm at Lake Delanor. FDR Amusement Carnival- 10:00am – 6:00pm at ball field. Grand Opening of Liberty Bell Pool- 10:00am-6:00pm. Sean Rox Drum Circle Concert- 6:00pm- 10:00pm at the Office Amphitheater. Bring your own instruments; all percussion instruments welcome. Some fees. $5 parking. (706) 663 4858.

 

Memorial Day Weekend

Friday, May 24 through Monday, May 27, 10 a.m. – 11 a.m.

Reed Bingham State Park – Adel

Celebrate with boat rides, animal programs, arts and crafts, and guided hikes. Call in advance to reserve spots for boat rides. Boat Rides $5. $5 parking. (229) 896-3551.

 

Moonlight Hike

Friday, May 24, 7 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Hard Labor Creek State Park – Rutledge

Join a park ranger on this guided hike under the full moon. Wear comfortable shoes, insect repellant, and bring a camera to record the journey, as we listen for insects, frogs and other nocturnal creatures. Meet at the Hard Labor Creek Trading Post. $5 plus $5 parking. (706) 557-3001.

 

Full Moon Kayak Tour

Saturday, May 25, 7:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.

Hard Labor Creek State Park – Rutledge

Join a guided tour of Lake Rutledge, and enjoy a peaceful paddle under a bright moon. Listen for night sounds, enjoy the night sky, and learn about the history of Hard Labor Creek State Park. Register in advance. $15 plus $5 parking. (706) 557-3001.

 

Memorial Day Weekend Celebration

Saturday, May 25 through Monday, May 27

Florence Marina State Park – Omaha

A variety of family events will include crafts and games throughout the weekend. $2 – $5 $5 parking. (229) 838-4706.

 

Memorial Day Mayhem

Saturday, May 25, 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.

Little Ocmulgee State Park and Lodge – Helena

It’s H2O Olympics Time! Compete in soaking wet water games, meet interesting creatures, take home cool crafts and enjoy a night hike. $1-$3 plus $5 parking. (229) 868-7474 x6052.

 

Swim the Warm Springs

Saturday, May 25 through Monday, May 27, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Roosevelt’s Little White House Historic Site – Warm Springs

Swim in the historic pools built by Franklin D. Roosevelt as a place for therapy. Normally kept empty for preservation, the shallow pools will be filled with naturally warm spring water. Limited to 80 per session. Reservations suggested. Ages 6 up. $20 adults; $12.50 ages 6 to 17; Family Package $80. (706) 655-5870.

 

Searching for Dragons and Damsels

Sunday, May 26, 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Hard Labor Creek State Park – Rutledge

Dragonflies and damselflies are some of the most beautiful and beneficial insects in the bug world. They come in many sizes shapes and colors. Join a park ranger on the hunt for these tiny predators, and explore streams, lake and pond. Bring a digital camera and binoculars for the adventure. This hike is best for participants 10 years old and up. Meet at Office/Trading Post. $5 plus $5 parking. (706) 557-3006.

 

Memorial Day Flag Retirement Ceremony

Monday, May 27, 10 a.m.

F.D. Roosevelt State Park – Pine Mountain

Pine Mountain Boy Scout Troop #40 will be performing a retirement ceremony for the American flag. Guests are welcome to bring flags needing to be retired and may drop their flags off at the FDR State Park Front Desk upon check-in. $5 parking. (706) 663-4858.

 

 

 

METRO ATLANTA

Soldier’s Life

Saturday, May 4

Pickett’s Mill Battlefield Historic Site – Dallas

Learn about the life of the common soldier who fought in Georgia. A Park Ranger dressed as a soldier will display the items soldiers carried while marching and fighting in north Georgia in 1864. $3-$5.50 (770) 443-7850. 

Photography 101

Saturday, May 4, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Sweetwater Creek State Park – Lithia Springs

Join Georgia State University professor Nancy Floyd, the artist-in-residence at Sweetwater Creek State Park, as we learn about Composition and Point of View. You don’t need an expensive camera to take good pictures. A simple point-and-shoot will do. Bring your manual. This class offers easy to understand instructions, classroom time and a hike in the woods. Ages 12 and older. $15 plus $5 parking. (770) 732-5871.

 

Celebrate Archaeology

Saturday, May 4, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Etowah Indian Mounds Historic Site – Cartersville

See Etowah Mounds as an archaeologist would. Learn how archaeology works. See artifacts from the site and discover what they tell us about ancient people. There are activities for the kids including archaeological dig boxes. A guided tour with a professional archaeologist will highlight the day, along with other group presentations. $4.00-$5.50. (770) 387-3747.

 

Iron Pour

Saturday, May 11

Red Top Mountain State Park – Cartersville

Watch a demonstration of our iron furnace, harking back to the days of iron production in the Allatoona mining community. Purchase a scratch block mold and create your own piece of cast iron art. Molds go on sale at 2 pm and supplies are limited. $5 parking. (770) 975-0055.

 

Bird Walk

Saturday, May 11, 8 a.m. – 10 a.m.

Red Top Mountain State Park – Cartersville

Bring your binoculars and cameras to this guided bird walk celebrating International Migratory Bird Day. We’ll be on the paved Lakeside Trail and hiking less than a mile. $5 parking. (770) 975-0055.

 

Kids Outdoor Adventure Festival

Saturday, May 18, 8 a.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

Join us at Alexander’s Lake for a fishing rodeo, archery, fly-fishing, tree climbing, orienteering, hayrides, and lots of other fun games. Bring your fishing poles and bait as we learn about aquatic habitats and fish identification. $5 parking. (770) 389-7801.

 

Geology Hike

Saturday, May 18, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.

Sweetwater Creek State Park – Lithia Springs

Geologist and “Friends of Sweetwater Creek State Park” member John Johnston will lead a moderate 2-mile hike identifying rock types and explaining how they formed. There will also be a visit inside the ruins of the Civil War era New Manchester Mill alongside the beautiful rapids of Sweetwater Creek. $5 plus $5 parking. (770) 732-5871.

 

Atlanta Audubon Society Bird Walk

Sunday, May 19, 8 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

Bring your binoculars for this gentle hike through the park’s Power of Flight area. Basic identification techniques and common birds will be discussed. Good for all ages. We recommend long pants and sleeves. Meet at the Alexander Lake Area. Register in advance. Donations of birdseed are appreciated. $5 parking. (770) 389-7801.

 

Full Moon Night Hike

Saturday, May 25, 8 p.m.

Panola Mountain State Park – Stockbridge

Listen to whippoorwills and owls as the sun slowly sets and the moon begins to rise. Panola Mountain is one of the best places to see the wildlife of the night. Bring flashlights and hiking boots. Meet at the nature center 15 minutes before each program. Register in advance. $7 plus $5 parking. (770) 389-7801.

Image courtesy Georgia State Parks & Historic Sites

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