Partners in Parks Nature in Focus Events Planned for June

The City of Lake Charles has a variety of Nature in Focus events planned for June as part of its Partners in Parks initiative. 

On Saturday, June 1, a Community Workday will be held at Tuten Park (3801 Nelson Rd.), beginning at 8 a.m. The workday is being held ahead of the reopening of Tuten Park’s Nature Sanctuary. Participants are asked to RSVP via email to Irvin.louque@cityoflc.us or by calling 491-8770. A reusable water bottle, gloves, mosquito repellent, sunscreen and gardening tools such as loppers and leaf blowers are recommended for participants. 

Two free Guided Bird Walks are also planned for June. The first will be held at Tuten Park on Friday, June 7, from 9-10:30 a.m. A second guided bird walk will take place at Riverside Park (1700 Fitzenreiter Rd.) on Friday, June 21, from 9-10:30 a.m.

On Saturday, June 15, from 8-10 a.m. a Grand Reopening Ceremony will be held for the Tuten Park Nature Sanctuary. The nature sanctuary, closed since 2007, contains 4,000 feet of nature trails, an outdoor classroom, Cajun prairie restoration, ¼ acre wildlife pond and 14 acres of habitat set aside for wildlife. 

On Friday, June 21, from 5-7 p.m. a Parks -4- Pollinators BioBlitz will be held at Tuten Park in partnership with Southwest Louisiana Master Naturalists. The event, being held in celebration of the summer solstice, will allow participants the opportunity to learn about pollinators from local master naturalists.   

Pollinators are a vital component of our ecosystem, and an essential link to the world’s food supply. According to the White House’s Pollinators Health Task Force, over the last 30 years, the United States has seen a steady decline of pollinators (such as bees, bats and butterflies) at an alarming rate of 30 percent annually — making it vital to take action on pollinator protection. 

The Parks -4- Pollinators BioBlitz is a national campaign to raise awareness and community involvement in the pollinator crisis through local parks and recreation. The National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA) and The Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation are challenging local parks to get involved and host a pollinator BioBlitz during June in celebration of pollinator month. 

During the month of June Tuten Park visitors are encouraged to help document the pollinators by simply snapping a picture of any pollinator spotted in the Park and uploading it to iNaturalist.org through the iNaturalist app. 

All events are free and open to the public, but pre-registration via https://www.eventbrite.com is encouraged.

“Our parks are a critical component of quality of life in the City of Lake Charles,” said Mayor Nic Hunter. “Programs like these are a small part of a larger effort we are making across the city through our Partners in Parks initiative to expand opportunities for citizens of all ages to make their way outside and explore science and nature in their own backyard.”

In July of 2018 the City of Lake Charles launched its citywide Partners in Parks initiative aimed at investing private and public dollars to improve park infrastructure and expand programming. 

Individuals interested in investing in city parks may do so online by visiting www.foundationswla.org.

Tuten Park, located at 3801 Nelson Rd., is a 24-acre park with natural woods, walking paths, butterfly garden and more.

Riverside Park, located at 1700 Fitzenreiter Rd., consists of approximately 200 acres of wetland habitat bordering the Calcasieu River. The park is set aside by the City of Lake Charles to ensure the conservation and restoration of native wildlife to create opportunities for human activity and interaction with nature.

June 2019 Nature In Focus


Published: 2019-05-30

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