Join fellow Home Ground members in an enjoyable and relaxing canoe/kayak trip along the C & O Canal. We will be paddling a beautiful section of the Canal located just upstream of the Town Creek Aqueduct. This is a very historically interesting area; the combination of the wetland and riparian habitats provided by the canal and the adjacent Potomac River makes this section of the canal very attractive to a diversity of wildlife and spring wildflowers. Participants are reminded to bring their binoculars and dress for changeable spring weather. We recommend that you bring a change of shoes and socks for comfort at the end of the paddle. Although this is easy paddling on quiet water, this trip requires that we carry our canoes and kayaks approximately 200 yards from our vehicles to the water and entering and exiting the canal can be steep and slippery.
courtesy of Carolyn Mathews
Participants are required to provide their own equipmentincluding a canoe or kayak, paddles, life jacket, (painter) ropes, lunch and drinks. Our group will meet at 9 am on Saturday, April 23 on Industrial Boulevard in the parking area in front of the Subway. This is the same parking lot were Planet Fitness is located. We will caravan approximately 30 minutes to the put-in at the Town Creek Aqueduct. The distance covered in the round trip paddle is 4 miles. We will be on the water for approximately 4 hours and should be back in Cumberland by mid to late afternoon depending upon how much the natural world entertains us!
This event is for Home Ground members and family only. Members interested in participating need to RSVP to Tom Mathews by April 20th. Tom can be contacted via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 301-707-3475. Please feel free to contact Tom if you have any questions.
photos courtesy of Carolyn Mathews
It has been a long winter but spring is finally upon us! Come out and join other Home Ground folks as we enjoy a relaxing, campfire-lit spring evening along the Potomac River. If we are lucky, we may be entertained by the spring sounds of nature like singing woodcocks, barred owls, spring peepers, and more.
The event is for Home Ground members only and will include live guitar music and story-telling. Home Ground will be providing hot dogs, marshmallows, and s’mores. Please bring your own beverages and chairs. Come out and welcome spring with friends and family!
Parking is limited, so please carpool as much as possible. For more information contact Tom Mathews via phone at 301-707-3475 or by email at email@example.com
Date: Saturday, April 2nd
Location: C & O CanalLocation: C & O Canal National Historic Park, Spring Gap Camping Area
Follow Route 51 south from Cumberland for approximately 5 miles. Entrance to the camping area will be on your right. If you get to the Spring Gap Post Office you have gone too far. As soon as you enter the National Park Service property take the first left into the camping area. We will be located at the “Group Site” at the very end of the camping loop.
Join Home Ground members on Sunday, March 20th at 4:00 pm for a documentary showing a discussion session at Allegany College of Maryland’s Continuing Education building.
Mother Nature’s Child explores nature’s powerful role in children’s health and development through the experience of toddlers, children in middle childhood and adolescents. The film marks a moment in time when a living generation can still recall childhoods of free play outdoors; this will not be true for most children growing up today. The effects of “nature deficit disorder” are now being noted across the country in epidemics of child obesity, attention disorders, and depression.
For more information go to http://www.mothernaturesmovie.com/the-film/
Home Ground members will lead a group discussion at the conclusion of the film. Light refreshments will be provided.
Spend a Sunday with Home Ground and our members, on February, 28th, as we Hike our Home Ground at Rocky Gap State Park. Hikers will meet at 2 p.m. at the Camper Contact Station near the entrance of the campground(Travel north on Pleasant Valley Road to the entrance of the Rocky Gap State Park Campground located at the north end of Lake Habeeb.) The hike will be approximately 5 miles around Rocky Gap and Lake Habeeb, with a easy to moderate degree of difficulty, and will include a discussion of wildlife and plants in the winter woods. Note: the length may be adjusted due to weather and/or trail conditions.
Hikers are encouraged to wear weather appropriate clothing and sturdy hiking shoes. Snacks and water are encouraged. For additional questions contact Tom Mathews at 301-707-3475 or Email firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on trails and hiking offered at Rocky Gap please click here.
Reservations are not required.
Read more on “Hike Your Home Ground-Rocky Gap State Park” »
Welcome the New Year with an informal hike along the C&O Canal co-sponsored by Home Ground and the Allegany Center of Lifelong Learning.
When: January 1, 2016 at 1:00pm
Meeting Place: Gather at the mule statue in front of the Western Maryland Railroad Station in Cumberland (click here for directions)
Degree of Difficulty: Easy to moderate hike for all ages
Length of Trail: Approximately 3 miles
Things to bring: Wear clothes and sturdy hiking shoes appropriate for the weather (rain, snow or shine), and bring water for drinking. Camera and binoculars optional.
RSVP: Reservations are not needed but appreciated — email email@example.com or call 301-876-7545
Additional Information: Recent bird sightings in this area have included a bald eagle, a red-breasted merganser, a flock of buffleheads, mallards, Canada geese, Great Blue Heron, and American Kestrel. Participants are also invited to join us afterwards for hot chocolate at McDonald’s. Click here for more information on the Allegany Center of Livelong Learning.
There is also a first day hike at Dan’s Mountain State Park.
Read more on “First Day Hike” »
Please join us for Home Ground’s 4th annual membership banquet!
The evening includes dinner (and dessert) provided by the Flintstone Volunteer Fire Department Auxiliary, a silent auction, and a keynote speech.
When: Thursday, October 22nd 2014, 5:30 – 8:30 pm
Reservations requested by October 7th- To make a reservation by mail (payment by check), please download and print this form. For more information or if you need to make a reservation by phone, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 301-707-3475.
Silent Auction. Items to be auctioned include guided fishing trips, original artwork and nature photograph, homemade and local food stuffs. Proceeds support Home Ground’s nature and outdoor recreation programs.
Keynote Speech. “The Natural Heritage Program: Preserving Biological Diversity through Conservation of Natural Areas.”
Home Ground members and guests will hear an engaging and information speech delivered by ecologist Dan Feller. Join us for an enlightening tour of Maryland’s Natural Areas and unique species through the eyes of an ecologist with the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Wildlife and Heritage Service.
Grab your binoculars and gear up for an enjoyable weekend hawk watch! Join Home Ground, in association with the Allegany and Garrett County Bird Club, as we look for hawks, eagles, and other birds migrating through the area during the Autumn season! We will visit the Town Hill Overlook on Saturday, October 10th and Banner’s Overlook in Green Ridge State Forest on Sunday, October 11th. Both locations are beautiful sites for spotting hawk diversity and other birds in migration. On Saturday, Ray Kiddy will be on hand to help identify various birds migrating through the area this time of year.
Mary Huebner will lead participants in an exciting and engaging hawk watch weekend across the hills of Allegany County. Participants are encouraged to dress for the weather and bring binoculars, if possible. A lunch or snack are recommended along with a drink.
No RSVP required; the event will be cancelled for inclement weather. For more information contact Mary Huebner by calling 301-876-7545 or at email@example.com.
Read more on “Hawk Watch Weekend in Allegany County” »
Another summer is coming to a close and what better way to welcome fall than to bring family and friends out for the 5th annual Discover Allegany Outdoors!
Find the hidden natural treasures in Allegany County at Home Ground’s 5th Annual Nature and Outdoor Recreation Festival on September 26th from 12-4:30p.m. Spend an afternoon hiking, canoeing, bird watching, and fishing around Rocky Gap State Park.
Discover animals, land forms, and stories that make our area rich in beauty and history. Identify edible plants, learn to fish, sample delicious farm to table foods, fly kites, learn “traditional” games, and win prizes. Enjoy a enjoy an entertaining Scales and Tales presentation and so much more. All events are free and family friendly. So save the date and join Home Ground and others for another educational, enjoyable September day discovering the natural treasures in our own “backyard.”
For more information please contact Natalia Buta at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Read more on “5th Annual Discover Allegany Outdoors” »
It’s time for another summertime stream safari! Come out and help us discover and identify aquatic life in Evitt’s Creek.
Photo courtesy of Michelle Crawford
Join Tom and Carolyn Mathews, as well as other Home Ground members, as they explore a section of the creek that flows past Allegany College of Maryland. They will be looking for minnows, crayfish, and insect larva, as well as learning about the values of stream-side forests for soil conservation, water quality, and wildlife habitats. Family members should wear clothes and shoes suitable for wading in water approximately 12” deep and should be aware that the stream bank access to the creek may be muddy. Conditions in the creek may include a slow current and slippery rocks. This is an introductory learning experience for all ages. Children must be accompanied on the entire adventure by an adult.
The event will be held from 6-7:30 p.m. at Allegany College of Maryland. Participants should meet at the pavilion next to the walking track near the ponds. Participants will walk as a group from there to the creek. For directions click here and enter this address: 12401 Willowbrook Road, Cumberland, MD 21502
Read more on “Evitt’s Creek Stream Safari” »
It’s time to join Home Ground for another enjoyable moonlight walk! On Tuesday, June 2nd, Margie Hartman and Mary Huebner will lead Home Ground members and others on a moonlight walk along a portion of the Great Allegheny Passage. Do not miss this opportunity to view a beautiful night sky!
When: Tuesday, June 2nd, at 7:45 p.m.
Where: Meet at the GAP trail parking lot on Cash Valley Rd.
For more information contact Margie Hartman at email@example.com or call 301-777-7175.
Participants are encouraged to wear durable footwear, weather-appropriate clothing, and to bring a flashlight. The walk will be cancelled in the event of inclement weather.
Read more on “Moonlight Walk on the Great Allegheny Passage” »