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Free programs and activities are being offered at Hills Creek and Cherry Springs state parks.

At Hills Creek
WELLSBORO—Hills Creek State Park at 111 Spillway Road is seven miles northeast of Wellsboro in Charleston Township via Charleston Street and Hills Creek Lake Road. Most programs will be in the park’s Nature Center area located in the campground between B and C loop.

Coyotes in Pennsylvania
Friday, August 4 at 8:30 p.m., learn where coyotes, a well established member of Pennsylvania’s wildlife community, come from and how to identify them during this free one-hour program. Mounts, hides, skulls and demonstrations will help tell the story of Pennsylvania’s largest wild canines at the park’s Nature Center. Free. No registration is required.
Bears of Pennsylvania 
Find out why black bears are doing better in Pennsylvania than in any other state, from having the largest average weights to earlier breeding ages to larger average litter sizes. This free, one-hour program will be at 8:30 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 11at the park’s Nature Center Pavilion. No registration is required.
Return of the Otter and Fisher
On Sunday, Aug. 13, at 8:30 p.m. in the park’s Nature Center, learn about these fun-loving members of the weasel family that were extirpated from Pennsylvania by logging and unregulated harvesting.  Find out about their return and how well they are doing.
Hills Creek Offers Two Free Seminars on Trapping
Hills Creek State Park at 111 Spillway Road, Wellsboro is offering two free seminars at the park’s Nature Center Area for anyone interested in learning how to trap furbearing animals on land and/or in water. Each seminar is limited to the first 20 people who preregister. The Land Trapping Seminar will be Sunday, Aug. 13 from 3-5 p.m. Covered will be ethics, laws, responsibilities, trap preparation and adjustment, set types, methods, locating sets, trouble shooting and anchoring methods. Fur handling options will also be discussed. The Water Trapping Seminar will be Sunday, Aug. 20 from 3-5 p.m. Covered will be methods to take raccoons, muskrats and beavers. Both seminars are for the general public and are open to youth and adults. Those ages 15 and under must be accompanied by an adult. To preregister for one or both seminars, call the park office at 570-724-4246.
Effects of Invasive Species on Hills Creek Wildlife
On Wednesday, Aug. 16 from 1-3 p.m., join Park Intern Shania Dauphinais near the concession stand for a free two-hour program to learn about the various invasive species that are in the park, such as honeysuckle, autumn olive, garlic mustard and multiflora rose; their impact on park wildlife; how they can be managed and what the public can do to help. These plants will be displayed.
Invasive Species at Hills Creek
At 6:30 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 18, meet Park Intern Shania Dauphinais at the park’s Sugarbush Pavilion to go on a short walk to learn about invasive species at Hills Creek. During this one-hour program, learn how to identify honeysuckle, autumn olive, garlic mustard, multiflora rose and crown vetch, their impact on the park, how they can be managed and how the public can help.
World of the Beaver
On Sunday, Aug. 20, at 8:30 p.m. in the Nature Center area, learn about the history of this unique mammal, its biology and management during a free, one-hour program.
Information about Hills Creek programs is available online at Have questions? Call the park office at 570-724-4246.
At Cherry Springs
COUDERSPORT—Cherry Springs State Park at 4639 Cherry Springs Road, Coudersport is 12 miles from Galeton via West Branch Road and 15 miles from Coudersport via Route 44.
All visitors who plan to view the night skies are asked to arrive at the park before dark. People may observe on their own and do not have to attend a stargazing program. If it rains, thunders or is cloudy, all programs will be cancelled.
Check for 48-hour cloud cover forecasts and viewing conditions or call (814) 435-1037 and select Option #5.
Wilderness Skill Series: Intro to Archery
Ever shot a bow and arrow? If not,  beginners will learn the basics of archery, including proper form and technique, range rules and safety procedures during this free, one-hour program on Wednesday, Aug. 9 at 6:30 p.m. in the park’s Night Sky Viewing Area.  Archers must be 10 years or older. Children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Small archers may have difficulty as bows have a draw weight of 15-20 pounds. No registration is required.
Wilderness Skill Series: Intro to Backpacking
Want to go on a hike but don’t know what to pack? Beginners are invited to attend this free, one-hour program in the park’s Night Sky Viewing Area on Thursday, Aug. 10 at 6:30 p.m. to learn what to pack for day hiking and overnight backpacking and helpful tips and tricks about how to pack. No registration is required.
Space Rocks
Discover what causes a meteor shower and why the Perseids is considered one of the best. This free, family oriented, one-hour program will be presented on Thursday and Friday, Aug. 10 and 11 at 8 p.m. in the Night Sky Viewing Area. It is suited for ages 6 and older. Preregistration is required.
Wilderness Skill Series: Matchless Fire Starting
On Friday, Aug. 11 at 6:30 p.m. in the park’s Night Sky Viewing Area, learn and practice the basics of fire starting without modern help to make a fire for cooking, keeping warm or emergencies. Discuss fire safety and learn the different methods for lighting the fire and various tips and tricks to make it the best it can be. Children must be accompanied by an adult. No registration is required.
Night Sky Tour: Perseid Meteor Shower
On FridaySaturday and Sunday, Aug. 11, 12 and 13, from 9-10:30 p.m. in the Night Sky Viewing Area, park staff will lead a laser guided tour to see the Perseid Meteor Shower and constellations. Perseids will be peaking on Aug. 12 but the moon will affect viewing. Telescopes will be available for a closer look. Preregistration is required.
Wilderness Skill Series: Tracks and Traces
There are a variety of animal species in this state park. They may not be easy to spot but signs of their presence are all around. On Saturday, Aug. 12, at 6:30 p.m., attend this free one-hour program in the Night Sky Viewing Area to learn how to identify the traces and the animals that leave them behind. No registration is required.
Wilderness Skill Series: Navigation
Before the use of modern technology like GPS units and cell phones, many outdoorsmen relied on maps and compasses as their methods of navigation. Beginners, children 12 and up are invited to attend this free one-hour program on Sunday, Aug. 13, at 6:30 p.m. in the Night Sky Viewing Area to learn how to find their way without depending on any modern equipment.
Nightscapes Photography Workshop 
Registration is required.  The first 10 people who register before 3 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 17 will be accepted for the three-hour workshop being held from 8 to 11 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 19 to learn how to photograph constellations and the Milky Way, including foreground material.  Meet professional photographer Curt 8 p.m. at the park’s visitor parking lot by the kiosk on the east side of Route 44.  Bring the following equipment: a tripod, a digital camera that allows for interchangeable lenses, a memory card and two fully charged camera batteries. Those who wish can bring a laptop computer with image editing software. View samples of Weinhold’s work at   The $55 per person fee (check or cash only) is due upon arrival at the program. Those with questions, can email Weinhold at
To Register
Online registration for stargazing programs is required. Visit If there is a problem with registering online or for information about these free programs, call (814) 435-1037.