Courtesy Bobbi Rodgers, Resource Manager, Charlotte Harbor Environmental Center

Charlotte Harbor Environmental Center and the Charlotte County Natural Resource Department will be conducting the following free programs in January 2019.  All programs can be found at ChecFlorida.org.

Unless noted, all walks begin at 9:00 am.  For directions or further information, call Cedar Point Environmental Park at 941-475-0769  

Saturday January 5: Join Al Squires on a guided walk through Tippecanoe II Mitigation Preserve in Port Charlotte. This 150-acre preserve is home to several families of the threatened Florida scrub jay. Meet in the parking lot.

Tuesday January 8: Join Nancy Clayton on a guided birding walk through the scrub and pine flatwoods of 217-acre Amberjack Environmental Park in Rotonda. Meet at the end of Gasparilla Pines Blvd. Walk begins at 8 am.

Wednesday January 9: Join Kate Borduas on a guided walk through the scrub and pine flatwoods of 217-acre Amberjack Environmental Park in Rotonda. Meet at the end of Gasparilla Pines Blvd.

Thursday January 10: Join Ruth Ward on a guided walk through the old growth pine flatwoods and mangrove fringe of 125-acre Oyster Creek/Ann Dever Regional Park in Englewood. Meet at the San Casa entrance.

Friday January 11: Join Bob “Coop” Cooper on a guided walk through the scrub and pine flatwoods of 217-acre Amberjack Environmental Park in Rotonda. Meet at the end of Gasparilla Pines Blvd.

Friday January 11, 18, 25:  Take a tour of the historic “Cookie House” at Cedar Point Environmental Park from 1 – 4 pm with Charlotte County Historical staff. Formerly known as the Bass Biological Laboratory, the scientific studies from this facility is linked to the world-renowned Mote Marine Laboratory. Cedar Point Park’s Visitor Center will be as well.

Saturday January 12: Join Dave Clayton on a guided walk through the 81-acre Bill Coy/Buck Creek Preserve in Englewood. The scrubby flatwoods and mangrove swamp border Buck Creek, which flows into Lemon Bay. Meet in the parking lot.

Sunday January 13: Join Ruth Ward on a guided walk through the scrub and pine flatwoods of 217-acre Amberjack Environmental Park in Rotonda. Meet at the end of Gasparilla Pines Blvd.

Monday January 14: Join Jean Leavitt on a guided walk through 308-acre Tippecanoe Environmental Park. This Charlotte County park includes habitats such as scrub, pine flatwoods, marsh and wetlands. Meet behind the Charlotte County Sports Park.

Tuesday January 15: Get wild & wet! Join Diane Drewry at Cedar Point Park on a Seagrass Adventure Wading Trip into Lemon Bay in search of marine organisms such as sea horse, crabs and juvenile fish. Registration required.

Tuesday January 15: Join Bob “Coop” Cooper on a guided walk through the old growth pine flatwoods and mangrove fringe of 125-acre Oyster Creek/Ann Dever Regional Park in Englewood. Meet at the San Casa entrance.

Wednesday January 16: Join Carolyn Gregsak on a guided walk through the scrub and pine flatwoods of 217-acre Amberjack Environmental Park in Cape Haze. Meet in the parking lot at the end of Gasparilla Pines Blvd.

Thursday January 17: Join Al Squires, Mangrove Chapter Florida Native Plant Society, for “Invaders From Afar” at 10 AM at Bayshore Live Oak Park in Port Charlotte. Al will show examples of Florida’s non-native, invasive plants & discuss how and why to remove them. Free literature, including limited copies of, “Identifying & Controlling Invasive Exotic Plants in SW Florida: A Homeowners’ Guide”, will be available. Reservations are advised.

Saturday January 19: Join Al Squires on a guided walk through Tippecanoe II Mitigation Preserve in Port Charlotte. This 150-acre preserve is home to several families of the threatened Florida scrub jay. Meet in the parking lot.

Saturday January 19: Take a tour of the historic “Cookie House” at Cedar Point Environmental Park from 10 am – 2 pm with Charlotte County Historical staff. Formerly known as the Bass Biological Laboratory, the scientific studies from this facility is linked to the world-renowned Mote Marine Laboratory.

Sunday January 20: Join Dave Clayton on a guided walk through the scrub and pine flatwoods of 217-acre Amberjack Environmental Park in Cape Haze. Meet in the parking lot at the end of Gasparilla Pines Blvd.

Tuesday January 22: Join Historian John McCarthy, Historic Spanish Pint Director, for a lecture by on “The Manasota Key Off-shore Burial Site” at Cedar Point Environmental Park from 5 - to 6:30 PM. This CHEC fundraising event includes complimentary wine and hors d’oevres, as well as the lecture, for a $12 entrance donation ($8 for Friends of CHEC). Space is limited so reservations are mandatory for this program.

Wednesday January 23: Join Kate Borduas on a guided walk through the scrub and pine flatwoods of 217-acre Amberjack Environmental Park in Rotonda. Meet at the end of Gasparilla Pines Blvd.

Wednesday January 23: Join Bob “Coop” Cooper on a guided walk through the 81-acre Bill Coy/Buck Creek Preserve in Englewood. The scrubby flatwoods and mangrove swamp border Buck Creek, which flows into Lemon Bay. Meet in the parking lot.

Thursday January 24: Join Tom Becker, UF/IFAS/Charlotte County Specialist II, discuss, “The Right Plant in the Right Place,” and how they can lower maintenance costs, attract wildlife, and provide beauty to your landscape, at Bayshore Live Oak Park in Port Charlotte at 10 AM. Learn to choose shrubs wisely before you plant. Attendees will receive a free University of Florida/IFAS Florida-Friendly Landscaping Design and Plant Selection Guide. Reservations advised.

Friday January 25: Join Cindy Christel and Phyllis Cady on a guided walk through Charlotte Flatwoods Environmental Park, a 487-acre Charlotte County property of mature pines, dry prairie, marsh wetlands and freshwater ponds. Its location adjourning state lands make it an important wildlife corridor. Meet at the parking lot on US 41 at 8:30 am.

Friday January 25: Join Bob “Coop” Cooper on a guided walk through the old growth pine flatwoods and mangrove fringe of 125-acre Oyster Creek/Ann Dever Regional Park in Englewood. Meet at the San Casa entrance.

Sunday January 27: Join Denise Hart on a guided walk through the 81-acre Bill Coy/Buck Creek Preserve in Englewood. The scrubby flatwoods and mangrove swamp border Buck Creek, which flows into Lemon Bay. Meet in the parking lot.

Monday January 28: Get wild & wet! Join a CHEC Naturalist at Cedar Point Park on a Seagrass Adventure Wading Trip into Lemon Bay in search of marine organisms such as sea horse, crabs and juvenile fish. Registration required.

Tuesday January 29: Join Ruth Ward on a guided walk through the old growth pine flatwoods and mangrove fringe of 125-acre Oyster Creek/Ann Dever Regional Park in Englewood. Meet at the San Casa entrance.

Wednesday January 30: Join Denise Hart on a guided walk through the 81-acre Bill Coy/Buck Creek Preserve in Englewood. The scrubby flatwoods and mangrove swamp border Buck Creek, which flows into Lemon Bay. Meet in the parking lot.

Thursday January 31: Join Ruth Ward on a guided walk through the scrub and pine flatwoods of 217-acre Amberjack Environmental Park in Rotonda. Meet at the end of Gasparilla Pines Blvd.

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Lecture at Cedar Point Park: Manasota Key Burial Site

Join Charlotte Harbor Environmental Center (CHEC) at this fundraising event which includes a lecture by Historian John McCarthy on “The Manasota Key Off-shore Burial Site” at Cedar Point Environmental Park, 2300 Placida Road, Englewood from 5 PM to 6:30 PM on January 22, 2019.  Included in the $12 entrance donation ($8 for Friends of CHEC) are complimentary wine and hors d’oevres, as well as the lecture. Socializing is from 5:00 pm with the lecture beginning at 5:30 pm. Space is limited so reservations are mandatory for this informative program.

 John McCarthy is Executive Director of Historical Spanish Point in Osprey, Florida. He is collaborating with the Gulf Coast Community Foundation in presenting lectures about the recently discovered 7,000-year-old off-shore archaeological burial site off Manasota Key.

 In 2016, divers discovered human skeletal remains and hand-woven burial fabric just 300 feet off Manasota Key in 20 feet of water.  State archaeologists and Florida Gulf Coast University anthropologists met with the Seminole Tribe of Florida to determine respectful ways of studying and preserving the find.  It is believed that the remains were at the bottom of a freshwater pond during the Archaic Period when sea levels were 30 feet lower than today. 

“There’s nothing else like this on the planet ... and it’s offshore Manasota Key,” said McCarthy.

Charlotte Harbor Environmental Center is a private, non-profit 501 (c) 3 corporation providing environmental education, passive recreation, research, and conservation land management to citizens and visitors of the greater Charlotte Harbor are. Your donation to this CHEC fundraiser provides educational environmental programs to local adults and students within the Englewood area. Your attendance will help all.

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