By Alicia Dziak
Peak season at Allegany State Park is almost here, and what better way to kick off longer days and warmer temps that with an array of great activities at New York’s largest state park?
I Love My Park Day May 5
On Saturday, May 5, celebrate I Love My Park Day by giving back. The Friends of Allegany State Park will host volunteers as part of more than 100 cleanups, improvement and beautification events happening statewide.
This event will be held on the Quaker side of the park and is the fourth year the Friends of Allegany State Park have hosted the event in cooperation with Allegany State Park management and PTNY.
According to Sandy Boczar, event chairperson, projects will include putting in the mulch by the new playground, removing nails and staples from cabins, fixing trail head signs, putting in the bear boxes, clearing trash and brush from cabin trails, rebuilding fire pits, cleaning fire pits, cleaning up the horse trails, various painting projects and some planting of flowers/weeding.
In addition — thanks to one of the Friends’ members, a few sponsors and the Friends of Allegany State Park — a free hot dog lunch will be served after the event at the Quaker picnic shelter.
Those interested in volunteering can register to volunteer by visiting www.ptny.org/ilovemypark or by calling Boczar at (716) 432-6964.
Allegany Adventure Run May 5
Also happening on Saturday, May 5 is the 2018 Allegany Adventure Run, which kicks off the trail running season in the park. The race begins and ends in the Summit Ski Area on the Red House side of the park, with three distances for runners: 6K, 13K and 27K. All courses utilize the trails in the park’s Art Roscoe XC Trail System, ranging from rolling hills to steep single track sections. For info and to register, visit www.heartrateup.com. (Race day registration is welcome.)
Outdoor Adventure Series May 9
Allegany State Park is offering informative, hands- on free clinics as part of their Outdoor Adventure Series, which will be held throughout the spring and summer at the Quaker Bathhouse or the Summit Warming Hut, depending on the activity.
On May 9, the Environmental Education Department of Allegany State Park will present the Secret Lives of the American Kestrel.
Participants will see what goes on inside a nest box as the nestlings grow and prepare to fledge the box. The group will discuss how placing a nest box in one’s backyard can be a good introduction to summer birdwatching at home.
This free event takes place at the Quaker Bathhouse starting at 6:30 p.m. May 9.
For more information, contact the Environmental Education/ Recreation Department at (716) 354-9101 ext. 236 or AlleganySP@parks.ny.gov.
Be sure to make your reservations now for your summer camping. With hundreds of campsites, cabins and cottages to choose from, there’s something for everyone, but they book up quickly. Head to www.reserveamerica.com to reserve your spot at the park!