Kentucky State Parks celebrating National Public Lands Day with wide range of volunteer opportunities, activities

The Kentucky State Parks will be participating in National Public Lands Day on Sept. 25, a day set aside to recognize the importance of parks and encourage volunteer work.

National Public Lands Day began in 1994 with three federal agencies and 700 volunteers. Last year, some 150,000 volunteers worked in 2,000 locations in every state. The purpose of this day is to keep the promise of the Civilian Conservation Corps alive and to preserve and protect America’s natural heritage.

During last year’s celebration, volunteers across the country removed an estimated 900,000 pounds of trash, collected an estimated 20,000 pounds of invasive plants, built and maintained an estimated 1,320 miles of trails and planted an estimated 100,000 trees, shrubs and native plants.

Gov. Steve Beshear issued a proclamation for National Public Lands Day, noting that public lands such as state parks “provide locally accessible natural and cultural resources for environmental learning, wildlife appreciation and recreation.”

For more information about national Public Lands Day and events being held throughout Kentucky and other states, visit For information about Kentucky State Parks, visit

Here is a listing of Kentucky State Park events for Public Lands Day. All are on Saturday, Sept. 25, unless otherwise noted. Call the park for details. All times are local.

Barren River Lake State Resort Park, Lucas
Sept. 18 • 23rd Annual Trashmaster’s Classic Lakeshore Cleanup
Come celebrate, have fun and make a difference in your community by picking up trash along the Barren River Lake shoreline.  This annual event brings hundreds of volunteers to the area to remove trash and debris from the shoreline of the lake.  Volunteers are to meet at the following Barren River Lake ramp locations at 8 a.m. CDT:  Bailey’s Point, Walnut Creek, Narrows, State Park, Beaver Creek and Peninsula.  Trash pick up will continue until noon.  Litter bags are provided; however, it is recommended that you bring gloves.

Following the trash pickup, volunteers will meet at the beach at Barren River Lake State Resort Park and will be treated to a free lunch, live entertainment and the opportunity to win door prizes.  Shane Holinde with WBKO-Channel 13 will once again serve as the emcee of the activity. Exhibits by event sponsors the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Barren River Lake State Resort Park, WBKO-Channel 13, the Friends of Barren River Lake and the Sierra Club will be available.

For more information contact Lisa Deavers at 270-646-2151, ext 2415, or by e-mail at  For more information on volunteer opportunities or to register a group to volunteer, call 270-646-2055.

Barren River Lake State Resort Park
Sept. 25
Celebrate National Public Lands Day at Barren River on Sept. 25. The day will begin at 9 a.m. with a Leave No Trace (LNT) awareness workshop. Visitors can then choose how they would like to enjoy the park.  You can take to the water on our canoe outing beginning at 10 a.m. Paddle the shoreline around the park. Learn about the history of the area and enjoy a box lunch provided by the park.  The fee is $25 per person and pre-registration is required (space is limited).  If you are more of a land lover, there are two different options for you. Volunteers are needed to work on the new Peter's Creek nature trail beginning at 10 a.m. Water and snacks provided.  Please register to volunteer. The last activity will be a nature hike and cleanup at 5 p.m. — preregistration is not required.  Meet at the Louie B. Nunn Lodge at the start time of each activity.  For more information, contact Lisa Deavers at 270-646-2151 or

Blue Licks Battlefield State Resort Park, Mount Olivet
Sept. 25
National Public Lands Day is the nation's largest hands-on volunteer effort to improve and enhance the public lands Americans enjoy. Volunteers have built trails and bridges, planted trees and plants, and removed trash and invasive plants. Volunteers will receive a free Blue Licks T-Shirt, free lunch at Hidden Waters Restaurant and gift shop discount. Register by Sept. 14 by calling Paul Tierney at 800-443-7008.

Buckhorn Lake State Resort Park, Buckhorn
Sept. 25
Although geared to scout groups, any child or adult is welcome to participate in National Public Lands Day at Buckhorn Lake State Resort Park. There will be a mini-lake cleanup, sessions on “Leave No Trace” and “Project Learning Tree” and tree plantings. Activities will take place from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. with registration at 8:30 a.m. Volunteers should dress appropriately for being outside. Garbage bags and gloves will be provided during the cleanup. Contact Sue Thomas at 606-398-7510 for information.

Columbus-Belmont State Park, Columbus
Sept. 25
Volunteers will work on trails and plant fall flowers. Contact Cindy Lynch, 270-677-2327.

Cumberland Falls State Resort Park, Corbin
Sept. 25
The park will host a cleanup day. Volunteers will pick up trash on the river bank around the falls area. Bags will be provided.  Please register at the visitor center at 9 a.m.  Clean-up will end at 12 noon.  For information, call 1-800-325-0063.

Dale Hollow Lake State Resort Park
Sept. 25 • Help a Trail Day 
Hikers, horseback riders, mountain bikers, scouts, students and any other members of the public who want to volunteer to help improve a trail system can help out Dale Hollow Lake State Resort Park. The park invites you to help on National Public Lands Day from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. If you can’t stay the whole time, the park appreciates any time you could spare to help. Volunteers should wear comfortable clothing and bring bug spray, sunscreen, work gloves and friends. Contact Jamie Avery at (270) 433-7431 or for more information.

E.P. Tom Sawyer State Park, Louisville
Sept. 25
For National Public Lands Day, E. P. Tom Sawyer State Park plans to do something a little different. Children can explore the fantasy world of their imagination while learning the importance of caring for and utilizing their public lands. This program is for children ages 3 to 10. Park staff plan to open the gates to the magical world in the park in order to invigorate childhood in the outdoors. There will be fantasy land home building, face painting, fairytale story-time, a nature hike and other fantasy crafts. Through these programs, children will learn all that public lands can offer to the imagination. Children are encouraged to wear their favorite fantasy character costume, which can get a little dirty. Meet at Picnic Grove across from the archery range. This program is free to the public. Contact Jessica Evans at 502-429-7270.

General Butler State Resort Park, Carrollton
Sept. 25
Volunteers can help plant trees, clean up trails, remove weeds and construct stone wall for a water shed project. Contact Evelyn Welch at 502-732-4384.

Greenbo Lake State Resort Park, Greenup
Sept. 25
Volunteers can remove trash from along lake shore and hiking trails. Volunteers interested in helping will meet at the Greenbo Boat Dock at 9:30 a.m. Contact Paul Verespy at 606-473-7324.

Jenny Wiley State Resort Park, Prestonsburg
Sept. 25
Come join the staff at Jenny Wiley State Resort Park as we celebrate the nation’s largest hands-on volunteer effort to improve America’s public lands, National Public Lands Day.  Volunteers will focus on trail cleanup, playground maintenance and road side cleanup. National Public Lands Day work will run from 1-5 p.m. You will be able to sign up as a Kentucky State Park volunteer and join the hundreds of volunteers already making a difference.  Volunteers will need to wear comfortable clothing and shoes, and don’t forget to register early by contacting Park Naturalist Trinity Shepherd at (606) 889-1790 or  There will be a free cookout for the volunteers.

John James Audubon State Park, Henderson
Sept. 25 • The Special Birds of Audubon Park
Sharon Sorenson, a columnist with the Evansville Courier and Press, will talk about the common permanent and migrant residents who live in Audubon State Park. She will crack the popular birds’ avian secrets and share her insights into their lives. Event is from 2-3 p.m. and is free. For information, contact Julie McDonald at (270) 826-2247 or

Kenlake State Resort Park, Aurora
Sept. 25
Celebrate National Public Lands Day at Kenlake State Resort Park from 9-11 a.m. Volunteers will plant flowers for the fall. A cookout with hot dogs and hamburgers will be held for volunteers at 11 a.m. at the golf course pavilion.
Lake Cumberland State Resort Park, Jamestown
Burnside Island State Park, Burnside

Sept. 18 • 20th Annual Cumberland Cleanup
You are invited to roll up your sleeves, lace up your boots and put on your work gloves to take part in the 20th Annual Lake Cumberland Cleanup.  The cleanup is held 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at locations all over the lake in an effort to remove trash, tires, appliances and other items from the shoreline of Lake Cumberland.  Gloves and garbage bags will be furnished. Appreciation Picnic with free food and prizes at 3 p.m. EDT. at Burnside Island State Park; 3 p.m. CDT at Lake Cumberland State Park.  For more information, contact the Friends of Lake Cumberland President Steve Syphax at (606) 679-3680.

Natural Bridge State Resort Park, Slade
Sept. 25 • Pulling Together at Natural Bridge
One of the biggest threats to our public lands is the spread of non-native plants. These invasive plants drastically reduce native plant diversity, which in turn reduces animal diversity. Come out and give your public lands a hand by helping the naturalist staff pull and cut some of the worst invaders at the park. Starts at 9 a.m. and ends at 11:30 a.m. (or whenever you get tired). Meet in the Hemlock Lodge lobby. Please bring work gloves and wear long pants. There is no cost for participation, but pre-registration is required. Contact Brian Gasdorf at to pre-register or for more information.

Nolin Lake State Park, Bee Spring
Oct. 2 • Lakeshore Cleanup Campaign
This cleanup day offers an opportunity for the whole family to volunteer, make a difference on Nolin Lake and enjoy and promote environmental stewardship in the community. Participants can show up at Moutardier Ramp, Wax Ramp, Dog Creek Ramp or Nolin Lake State Park Ramp at 8 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 2 and help keep Nolin River Lake beautiful.  Bring your pontoon to help transport volunteers along the lakeshore.  After the cleanup there will be a volunteer appreciation event at Wax that includes music, food and prizes. For information, call (270)286-4511.

Old Mulkey Meetinghouse State Historic Site, Tompkinsville
Sept. 25
Let’s Paint the Park! The new dumpster enclosures, as well as picnic tables and grills, will get a fresh coat of paint. For information, call Sheila Rush, 270-487-8481.

Pennyrile Forest State Resort Park, Dawson Springs
Sept. 24-25
Come show your support for public lands at Pennyrile Forest State Resort Park’s National Public Land’s Day! Volunteers of all ages and abilities will help park workers revitalize the park. All registered volunteers will receive a free continental breakfast in the campground, as well as free camping on Sept. 24 and 25, 2010. Volunteers must sign up with a team. Teams will be given varying tasks that may include picking up litter, beach cleanup and trail maintenance. A meeting will be held at 7 p.m. on Sept. 24th that all team leaders must attend. Teams must register by Sept. 21. To register contact Becky Clark at (270) 797-3421 or
Rough River Dam State Resort Park, Falls of Rough
Sept. 25 • Cache In; Trash Out Geocaching Event
Celebrate National Public Lands Day with us as we clean up the park with the fun sport of Geocaching! Not familiar with this? Don’t worry; we will teach the basics and you’ll be hooked! Think of it as a scavenger hunt with a hand held GPS system. Bring your own, and if you do not have one, we will have a limited number to loan out or you can tag along with others. Geocachers are always willing to share and spread the knowledge of this fast-growing outdoor sport! We will begin at 9 a.m. with a GPS-Geocaching learning session, for those who are new to the sport, and then begin caching at 10 a.m. Call Sheila Jones, recreation supervisor, for more information or to sign up. The park must have a minimum of 15 participants to make the event successful! 1-800-325-1713. Visit to learn more about the sport!

Taylorsville Lake State Park, Taylorsville
Sept. 25 • Taylorsville Lake Clean Sweep
Taylorsville Lake State Park, in conjunction with the Taylorsville Lake Conservation Association, is holding the 11th annual Taylorsville Lake Clean Sweep in observance of National Public Lands Day on Saturday, Sept. 25, from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.  The goal is to protect the natural beauty and quality of life in the Salt River Basin through environmental improvement efforts.  All volunteers are welcome!  To volunteer, call 502-477-8882 or the park at 502-477-8713.  Meet at the Taylorsville Lake State Park picnic shelter at Possum Ridge. Volunteers should wear old clothes, work gloves and sturdy shoes.  Volunteers will be provided a free lunch, prizes and a cleaner lake!
Wickliffe Mounds State Historic Site, Wickliffe
Sept. 25
Check-in begins at 9 a.m. (CDT). Service projects include: trails, buildings, picnic area, interpretive plant maintenance and highway frontage clean up.  In the afternoon, a special presentation will be offered on the archaeological significance and history of the park. Free museum admission for volunteers. For more information or to sign up for the cleanup event, please call the park office at (270)335-3681 or
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My family (wife and three kids, sometimes the dog) and I have been RV campers since 2007. We own a 2000 Trail-Lite B22 Bantam hybrid, our tow vehicle is a 2006 Trailblazer LT EXT (5.3 V8 with 3.73 Rear Axle Ratio), and our setup includes the Equalizer sway controller. Looking to upgrade the camper in the near future, but until then we get out 2-3 times a month in season.