David Lillard
WV Rivers Coalition

If you are looking for a chance to shake off winter and enjoy the special places of the Monongahela National Forest, West Virginia Rivers Coalition’s Best of Birthplace weekend might be the ticket. The event, planned for Saturday and Sunday, May 20 and 21, includes outdoor education activities Saturday afternoon, followed by dinner and a campfire. On Sunday, choose from a variety of events like learning to fly fish, a bicycle trip along the Williams River, and hikes for people of all abilities.

People of all ages are welcome. Saturday’s activities are especially designed with young people in mind. 

The event is free for kids from Pocahontas County and their parents, but registration is required by calling 304-637-7201.

Saturday’s activities take place at the Elk River Inn in Slaty Fork, which is also the rendezvous point for Sunday’s outings.

Saturday’s events will feature a Leave No Trace program – to help everyone go lightly on West Virginia’s public lands – and a walk to discover the natural wonders of the springs that flow in and around Elk River Inn.

The event also welcomes new Marlinton/White Sulphur Ranger District Cynthia Sandeno, who recently took over the post. Sandeno will present a fascinating program on bats.

Watoga State Park naturalist Chris Bartley will present a program on black bears.

One of Sunday’s outings includes a special chance to see snakes up close at Cranberry Nature Center, which has agreed to open for this program.

To register, visit wvrivers. org/2017/05/bestofbor. Free registrations must be made by calling Kathleen Tyner at 304-637-7201.