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Dunbar Cave’s Spring Fling: Celebrating nature, wildlife and outdoor exploration

The annual Spring Fling, a celebration of nature, wildlife and outdoor exploration, will be held at Dunbar Cave State Natural Area on Saturday, May 9th, rain or shine. All activities begin at the visitor center and are free of charge. The start times of some programs may overlap, and children must be supervised by an adult at all times. Donations accepted. Food, Tee shirts, and membership to Friends of Dunbar Cave can be purchased during the day.

Schedule of events:

7:00-8:30 am – Early Morning Bird Hike: Hike the trails at the park; watch and identify birds with members of the Warioto Audubon Chapter. Bring binoculars and field guides if you have them.

8:45-9:45 am – Backpacking with Tennessee Trail Association: Bob Lyon, an experienced backpacker and long-distance hiker, will demonstrate the needed equipment for backpacking, day hiking and camping.

8:45-10:15 am – Wildflower/Plant Walk: Amy Wallace, the park’s naturalist, will lead you on a hike to appreciate the abundant wild flowers & other plants found in the park.

10:00-11:00 am – Raptors with SOAR, Inc.: Save Our American Raptors will give an educational program showing various native birds of prey.  They will tell about each bird and its personal history, describe its species and how it fits into the natural world.  Several of the birds are flighted which should make for some lively audience encounters.

11:15 am-12:15 pm – Native Amphibians and Reptile: Nathan Parker, APSU naturalist, will present a program on some of our local native salamanders, frogs and snakes.

11:15 am-12:15 pm – The Story of Dunbar Cave: Enjoy this new 14 minute film developed by the Friends of Dunbar Cave and Austin Peay’s Department of Communication. The film will be shown several times.

12:30-1:30 pm – Urban Wildlife: Bettina Bowers-Schwan of Walden’s Puddle Wildlife Rehabilitation and Education Center will discuss some of the animals that you will find living in your town or community. Live animals will be displayed.

12:30-1:30 pm – Raptors with SOAR, Inc.: Save Our American Raptors will provide an educational program showing various birds of prey.

1:45-2:45 pm – Snakes and Reptiles: Sherry and Donny Howell, local reptile experts, show you native and exotic snakes and other reptiles. Learn why these gentle creatures are so important to our ecology.

Snakes and Reptiles

1:45-2:45 pm – Bluebirds in your Backyard: Duane Rice, local Audubon Society leader and bluebird expert will talk about how to host Eastern Bluebirds around your home and property.

2:45-3:45 pm – Trail Hike with Suva Bastin: Suva Bastin, member of Clarksville’s Tennessee Trails Association, will lead us on a hike on the park’s trails. She can provide valuable pointers for day-hiking in our region.

Canoeing on Swan Lake

2:45-4:45 pm – Canoeing: Enjoy the beauty of Swan Lake and Dunbar Cave State Natural Area from a canoe. Canoes, paddle and life jackets provided for brief excursions on the lake. Sign-up will begin earlier in the day.

Debbie Boen
Debbie Boen
Debbie and her family moved to Clarksville slightly after the tornado of 1999. Debbie founded the group, Clarksville Freethinkers for Peace and Civil Liberties, in 2004. She participated in Gathering to Save Our Democracy, a group dedicated to obtaining free and verifiable elections in Tennessee. She has supported groups including the NAACP, Nashville Peace Coalition, PFLAG, Friends of Dunbar Cave and the Mountain Top Removal Series of Films and speakers. She participated as an artist in the ARTZ gallery group in Clarksville and won Best of Show, First and 2 Second Place awards for four of her sculptures. She won a voter's choice award for a performance at the Roxy Regional Theatre. She is a wife, mother and cancer survivor. She is always amazed at the capabilities of the human spirit, and the wisdom to find humor when there is none.

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