Summer 2023 at Friends of Pinery Park was our busiest yet!
The Volunteer Appreciation BBQ was a wonderful opportunity for us to be able to thank the many amazing volunteers who help make the Friends of Pinery Park so effective. Without our willing volunteers who contribute hours of their free time and energy to our regular events, work in the Nature Store, and regularly process all the recycling; many of our fantastic and highly successful projects in collaboration with Ontario Parks, would not be possible. The rain on this day, forced us to bring the event indoors at the last minute, but we still made the most of it. The presentation, “Embrace Your Inner Child and Reignite Your Bug Phase” and the hike which followed, was very well attended.
The Healthy Parks, Healthy People event was a hit; especially with all the children who loved creating paintings and cards of their favourite butterflies, flowers and birds. Our outreach and research team taught curious visitors of all ages, about the Bat Monitoring Program in the park. Those who met with and chatted to the Species at Risk Stewardship, and Bat Technician, Victoria Pepe came away with a new appreciation for bats and their essential role in our ecosystems.
SavannaFest was also well attended and visitors to the park learnt lots of interesting new facts about Pinery’s rare Oak Savanna, a crucial habitat for all sorts of species. In Pinery Provincial Park, we all have to do our part to help conserve Canada’s biggest remaining Oak Savanna stand.
On a sunny day in August, upwards of 50 incredible volunteers came to help us for the Beach Clean-up Day, collecting all sorts of litter and helping to make our beaches much more clean, welcoming and natural. Some of the more unusual, bigger items found were a tire, a fallen sign and some netting.
In addition to our annual summer events, Friends of Pinery Park attended many local farmer’s markets in the area throughout June, July and August. It was wonderful to have people come up to us and smile warmly as they recognised our valuable organisation and have them eagerly tell us that they were staying in the park. People who had never heard of us before came away with a newfound understanding of what Friends of Pinery Park is, and of all the important things that we do.