As temperatures fall and winter arrives in earnest, it should come as no surprise that that most Crawford Park District activities center on Lowe-Volk Park and Nature Center, although in-person forays into nature continue as well.

The Center is just four miles north of Galion on SR598 (Portland Way North).

Here is an overview of activities at Lowe-Volk during the remainder of this year and the first week of 2024:

Audubon Christmas Bird Count

On Friday, December 29, at 7:30 AM, nature enthusiasts and bird lovers have a unique opportunity to contribute to a long-standing tradition of citizen science. The Audubon Christmas Bird Count, hosted by the Crawford Park District at Lowe-Volk Park, offers a chance to engage in vital data collection on bird populations across North America. Participants can join as field counters or assist from their homes by counting birds at their feeders. This program not only aids in conservation efforts but also provides a sense of community and connection to the natural world. Those interested in participating can contact the Crawford Park District office at 419-683-9000. Lowe-Volk Park is conveniently located just 3 miles north of US Route 30. More details are available on their website and Facebook page.

Face to Face with Lizards

On Saturday, December 30, at 11:00 AM, Lowe-Volk Park invites children to a delightful encounter with its scaly residents. Naturalist Chelsea will introduce Simon, a charismatic bearded dragon, and a native Ohio lizard, the Common Five-lined Skink. This interactive session offers kids the chance to hold and feed Simon, fostering a hands-on learning experience about these fascinating creatures. This event promises to be an engaging and educational experience for young nature lovers.

Gazing at the Stars

The same evening, December 30, at 6:00 PM, the park becomes a gateway to the cosmos. The Crawford Park Astronomy Club will guide visitors through a stellar journey, exploring celestial wonders like Saturn, Jupiter, the Andromeda Galaxy, the Orion Nebula, and more. This event is perfect for anyone fascinated by the night sky and eager to learn more about astronomy. The club’s expertise and telescope skills will enhance this visual feast, making it a memorable experience for all ages.

For the Tiny Tots: Little Explorers – Snow Edition

The exploration continues on Tuesday, January 2, at 5:00 PM with a program designed for young children (ages 0-5). ‘Little Explorers’ focuses on engaging infants and toddlers in sensory activities and developing their fine motor skills. This month’s theme revolves around the enchanting world of snow, offering both indoor and outdoor activities (weather permitting). It’s an excellent way for the little ones to connect with nature from an early age.

Homeschoolers’ Journey Through Time

On Thursday, January 4, with sessions at 10:00 AM and 2:00 PM, homeschoolers have a unique opportunity to delve into Ohio’s natural history. The ‘Wildlife Timeline’ program by the Crawford Park District allows children aged 5-12 to explore the various animals that have inhabited Ohio over the past two centuries. Registration is required by calling the Crawford Park District at 419-683-9000.

Discovering Wildlife: Tracks in the Trails

Later that day, January 4, at 4:00 PM, nature enthusiasts can join Naturalist Chelsea for a hike along the trails of Lowe-Volk Park. The ‘Tracks in the Trails’ event is a wonderful way to learn about the local wildlife through the exciting activity of tracking animals in mud or snow. This educational hike is perfect for anyone curious about the park’s winter inhabitants.

For more information on these and other programs, visit the Crawford Park District’s website.

Image by Sameera Madusanka from Pixabay