If the sun is shining on York County, there is something to do at one of its many parks.
Rent a paddleboat or canoe and enjoy the afternoon on Lake Marburg at Codorus State Park in North Codorus Township. Bring your discs or bike up to Gifford Pinchot State Park in Warrington Township to play disc golf or ride on one of its bicycle trails.
For more on the state parks in York County, visit www.dcnr.state.pa.us/stateparks.
There's plenty going on this summer at York County parks, too. Programs run throughout the summer, but you can also visit the parks for their fields and trails.
Here's a list of highlights through August. All programs are free unless otherwise noted. For a full calendar, visit www.yorkcountyparks.org.
SUNSET SCRAMBLE BIKE RIDES, Heritage Rail Trail County Park, 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Tuesdays through Sept. 24. Start location varies each week. Take a 13- to 15-mile, moderately paced ride. Each rider must have a helmet, a light and water. Bring money for a snack.
MOONLIGHT BIKE RIDES, Rail Trail, 8:30 p.m. Saturday, June 2, June 30, July 28, Aug. 25 and Sept. 29. Themes and start locations vary; Saturday is "local history" at the Seven Valleys parking area. Take a 9-mile ride under a bright moon, learning about local history and nature. Light refreshments will be served after the ride. $5, children younger than 12 admitted free.
FAMILY FISHING PROGRAM, Spartan Road parking lot, William H. Kain County Park, York Township. 6 to 9 p.m. May 18. Adam Spangler from the Fish and Boat Commission will help you learn to fish or sharpen your skills. No skills or equipment necessary. Call 486-7352 to register or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
NATIVE PLANT FEST, York County Annex, 112 Pleasant Acres Road, Springettsbury Township. 840-7408, www.maescapes.org. 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. May 19. Sponsored by Penn State Extension and MAEscapes. Native wildflowers, ferns, grasses, shrubs and trees available, plus talks and exhibits.
LAKE REDMAN BOAT RENTAL, Kain Park, Springfield and York townships. Summer hours begin May 26. Kayaks, canoes, paddleboats and rowboats available for rent. 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays; 1 to 7 p.m. Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.
STATEWIDE FREE FISHING DAY, Kain and Spring Valley county parks. May 28. No fishing license needed. Introduce a friend or relative to sport of fishing. All other fishing regulations do apply.
WALLACE-CROSS MILL, 15759 Cross Mill Road, East Hopewell Township. 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. Sundays June 3 through Aug. 26. Tour guides will lead you through the inner workings of a restored water-powered gristmill and explain its history and the role mills played in our communities. Donations accepted.
PORCH TALKS - HOBOS AND BANJOS, Hanover Junction Train Station, North Codorus Township. 7 to 8 p.m. June 13. Al Smith, park volunteer, will discuss the life of the hobo, a nearby hobo village, and music along the railroad. Tim Winter will provide banjo music during program. Museum opens at 6 p.m. Also, don't miss "Civil War Songbook, Raiding the Station" June 27, Hanover Junction; "World War II Songbook and Station Memories" July 11, New Freedom Train Station; "Treasures Found, Battlefields and Railroads" July 25; New Freedom Train Station.
SOLSTICE CELEBRATION, Highpoint Scenic Vista, 1199 Hilts Road, Lower Windsor Township. 5 a.m. June 21. Members of various American Indian tribes will greet summer in a sunrise ceremony atop this riverside park. It is a 15-minute walk to top of hill. Program starts about 5:30 a.m., weather permitting. Call 428-1961 to register.
MULTI-BOROUGH FIREWORKS, Highpoint Scenic Vista, 1199 Hilts Road, Lower Windsor Township. Dusk July 4. See fireworks from a dozen different shows from atop York County's river hills park. Weather permitting.
BUTTERFLY COUNT, Richard M. Nixon County Park, Springfield Township. 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. July 14. All eyes needed for the annual Butterfly Count, part of the North American Butterfly Association's Fourth of July Count. Join group leaders to search a 7.5-mile radius around Nixon Park. Long pants recommended. Bring a bagged lunch, a field guide and binoculars. An ice-cream social will follow the count at 2 p.m. Open to ages 10 to adult. $3 NABA fee; call 428-1961 to register.
DREAMWRIGHTS PRESENTS "A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM," John C. Rudy County Park, East Manchester Township. 6:30 p.m. July 24. Bring a chair or blanket to sit on. A second performance will be given 6:30 p.m. July 28 at the Lake Redman activity area, Kain Park, Springfield Township.
CANOE TOUR AND LAKE CLEANUP, Lake Redman activity area, Kain Park, Springfield Township. 9 to 11:30 a.m. Aug. 4. Join Park Naturalist Kelsey Frey for a paddle-powered tour of the lake. Observe aquatic animals and birds and learn about plants and water quality issues that affect them. The tour will pause as needed to pick up litter around the lake. Dress for the weather. Bring your own boat or use a park canoe. Call 428-1961 to register.
OPEN HOUSE: GARDENS AT RUDY PARK, administrative headquarters, Rudy Park, East Manchester Township. 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Aug. 11. Attend talks, take a tour of the gardens, bring your questions for the Master Gardeners or shop the farmers market.
HONEY BEE AWARENESS: OPEN HIVE DEMONSTRATION, Nixon Park, Springfield Township. 10 a.m. to noon and 2 to 4 p.m. Aug. 11. Bee specialist Jeremy Barnes will introduce the world of honey bees through this open hive demonstration. The hive will be located underneath a screen tent.
- Sarah Chain
and Patrick Abdalla,