Nature Programs |  History Programs |  Scout Programs
Calendar of Events |  Wish List |  Volunteering


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PAST ISSUES OF THE MILEPOST:

What the D&R Canal State Park Has To Offer
The Delaware and Raritan Canal was built in the 1830s to transport goods to industrial areas. Today it is used as a water supply system and a corridor for people as well as wildlife. As you walk on the towpath you will see 19th century mills and locktender houses, along with hand-built spillways and stone-arched culverts.

The D&R Canal State Park offers a variety of habitats within its 70 mile long corridor. The canal is adjacent to many rivers making it an ideal place to study the diversity and adaptions of organisms found in a freshwater flood plain and riverine habitats. The park also contains areas representing upland forests and fields in varying stages of succession.

No matter what area of the D&R Canal State Park you visit, your students will leave with a better understanding of nature and their place in it.


Nature Programs

Registration fees apply to the programs listed below. Please contact our park office at (609) 924-5705 if interested in any of these listed programs AND download, print, complete and return our registration form available here as a PDF file.

D & R Canal State Park Program Registration Form

Forestry |  Water Quality |  Orienteering |  Insect Investigation
NJ Animals |  In Class Presentations |  Weekend Family Programs



Call and speak with our Naturalist for more information or to schedule a program for your class.

D&R Canal State Park Naturalist: Stephanie Fox
Phone: (609) 397-2949
E-Mail: dnrnaturalist@verizon.net
Nature Program Topics Include:
Forestry
Students will learn...
to identify New Jersey trees using a dichotomous key;
to infer a tree's life history by looking at tree cookies;
how different parts of a tree function together to make a tree grow.

Water Quality
Students will learn...
to identify macroinvertebrates that help determine water quality;
how point and non-point pollution effects water quality;
to perform water testing for certain parameters.

Orienteering:
Students will learn...
to identify topography symbols;
how to determine distance from a topographical map;
how to use a magnetic compass and complete a small obstacle course.

Insect Investigation:
Students will learn...
how to find and identify insects;
the diverse lifestyles and adaptations insects
possess;
the characteristics that make-up an insect.

NJ Animals:
Students will learn...
the different classifications of animals found in New Jersey;
about the four habitat requirements: food, shelter, water and a place to raise their young.

In-Class Presentations
If you can't come to us, we will come to you! Our naturalist can present informative, hands-on programs to our students on a variety of environmental subjects. Topics can include: Water Quality, Forestry, Diversity and Adaptions, Introduction to NJ Animals, and Orienteering. Other programs may be available on request. All programs will be geared for your grade level and are in correlation with the NJ Core Curriculum standards. The presentations last approximately 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Please call (609) 924-5705 and speak with our naturalist for more information.




Canal History Programs

Registration fees apply to the programs listed below. Please contact our park office at (609) 924-5705 if interested in any of these listed programs AND download, print, complete and return our registration form available here as a PDF file.

D & R Canal State Park Program Registration Form

Weekend Biking or Walking Tours


Arrangements for historic biking or walking tours at the park can be made by appointment. If you have any questions please call and speak with our Historian for more information.

D&R Canal State Park Historian: Vicki Chirco
Phone: (609) 924-5705
E-Mail: dnrhistorian@verizon.net




Programs for Scouts

Registration fees apply to the programs listed below. Please contact our park office at (609) 924-5705 if interested in any of these listed programs AND download, print, complete and return our registration form available here as a PDF file.

D & R Canal State Park Program Registration Form

The Naturalist and Historian at the Delaware and Raritan Canal State Park also offer several programs designed to help scouts work toward a variety of badge requirements. In some cases, one scheduled program is all that is needed to complete a badge and add to your list of scouting achievements. AND IT'S FREE!! Programs include:

GIRL SCOUTS
Brownies
Animals
Birds Try-It
Eco-Explorer/Outdoor Adventurer
Creepy Crawlers
Trees for Our Future
NJ Heritage Patch
Juniors
Earth Connections
Finding Your Way
Wildlife
Trees for Our Future
NJ Naturalist
NJ Heritage Patch
Seniors/Cadettes
Wildlife
Eco-Action
Orienteering
Trees for Our Future
NJ Naturalist
NJ Heritage Patch
BOY SCOUTS
Webelos
Naturalist and Forester
Bears
Sharing Your World With Wildlife
Other programs such as Orienteering and The Story of the D&R Canal can also be scheduled. If you are a scout leader and interested in scheduling one of these programs for your troop, then contact either Vicki (Historian) at dnrhistorian@verizon.net or Stephanie (Naturalist) at dnrnaturalist@verizon.net to discuss availability. Both can also be reached at (609) 924-5705.



Calendar of Events
The following scheduled programs are run by the D&R Canal State Park Naturalist, Historian and/or an affliated friends organization. Pre-registration is required to participate in any of the listed events unless otherwise noted. To do so, please call either (609) 924-5705 (main park office at Kingston), (609) 397-2949 (Bulls Island office) or the number indicated in the listing. You'll need to leave a contact name and phone number in the event of cancellation as well as the number of people planning to attend the program (please indicate number of adults and children). Program registration can also be done via the Internet by filling-out our Program Registration Form.

  Jump To Calendar of Events
  Click here to access the on-line Program Registration Form

Programs begin at varied times which are noted below and are subject to cancellation due to inclement weather, insufficient interest or other unforeseen circumstances. Call the park office if in doubt about a program's cancellation. ALL PROGRAMS ARE FREE! If you would like further information about a specific program, please call.



2014 Calendar of Events

SEPTEMBER  |   OCTOBER

SEPTEMBER EVENTS

September 6
(Saturday)
9:30 am
Walk the Path in Lawrence Township:
Enjoy a morning walk along the canal with the D&R's historian and visit two historic homes along the way - The Port Mercer Canal House and the 18th Century Brearley House. The group will meet at the Port Mercer Canal House in Lawrence Township (4278 Quakerbrige Road ~ Behind the Mercer Mall) at 9:30 a.m. for a brief talk about the history of the D&R Canal. The group will then walk along the historic towpath to the Lawrence Historical Society's Brearley House where the we will be treated to a tour of this restored 18th century home by the Society's docents. Come join us for this 2.5 mile round trip walk back in time. Registration IS required. INCLEMENT WEATHER CANCELS.

  Register for this program

September 13
(Saturday)
10:00 am
Walk the Canal ~ Alexander Road to Carnegie Road:
Join the D&R Canal Watch as they continue an end-to-end hiking challenge along the length of the canal path. This 5.5 mile walk is the next leg of this challenge. This guided walk will provide information about both canal and local history. For this leg, participants are asked to meet at at Carnegie Road (off Route 1) at 10 am where we will then shuttle to the start point on Alexander Road Free to the public, but donations are welcome and appreciated. For further details contact Bob Barth at (201) 401-3121 (or email: barths@att.net).

September 13:
(Saturday)
2 - 4 pm
Scavenger Hunt at the Blackwells Mills Canal House:
Come to the historic canal house located on the corner of Blackwells Mills and Canal Road in Franklin Township to find treasures. Registration is required - to do so call the Canal House (732-873-2133) or Barbara at (908-369-0357. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Prizes will be awarded. Refreshments for everyone.

September 27
(Saturday)
5th Annual National Public Lands Volunteer Day at the Mapleton Preserve:
Calling all volunteers! Come to the Mapleton Preserve in Kingston or an afternoon of stewardship on National Public Lands Day. Willing participants are asked to meet outside the D & R Canal State Park Headquarters Building located at 145 Mapleton Road in Kingston, former home site of Princeton Nurseries, and be prepared to help with a variety of tasks. We will be mulching trees in the arboretum, clearing autumn olive from the fields, and collecting litter. Participants are invited to bring their favorite tools to the event--loppers, saws, rakes and shovels. This is a great opportunity to help beautify the preserve so come spend an hour or two, help with volunteer efforts and show your support for public lands! Afterwards take a self-guided walk in the preserve, or simply bring a picnic and enjoy it at this beautiful site. Refreshments (water, apples and cookies) will be provided. This volunteer day is organized and sponsered by the Friends of Princeton Nursery Lands. For more information, visit our website at www.fpnl.org or call 609-683-0483. To learn more about National Public Lands Day, go to www.publiclandsday.org

September 27:
(Saturday)
10 am
Welcome Fall Walk in Kingston:
Join D&R’s historian who will lead a 4-mile round-trip walk along the towpath from the Kingston Canal House south towards the Millstone Aqueduct. Not only will participants enjoy the crisp autumn air and start of the fall season, but they will also learn a bit about the story of the historic canal. With the D&R Canal on one side and Carnegie Lake on the other, the location promises to provide some beautiful Autumn scenery. The program will begin at 10:00 am at the Kingston Canal House located directly off Route 27 in Kingston approximately 4 miles north of Princeton. Registration IS required. INCLEMENT WEATHER CANCELS.

  Register for this program

Sept. 26 & 27:
(Sat/Sun)
11am - 4pm
Hats off to the Blackwells Mills Canal House:
Come visit the historic canal house located on the corner of Blackwells Mills and Canal Road in Franklin Township to see a collection of 1940s-60s vintage designer hats. All will be for sale! Registration is NOT required and admission is FREE!

OCTOBER EVENTS

October 4
(Saturday)
10 am
Walk the Canal ~ Carnegie Road to Cadwalader Park:
Join the D&R Canal Watch as they continue an end-to-end hiking challenge along the length of the canal path. This 6 mile walk is the next leg of this challenge. For this leg, participants are asked to meet at Ellarslie Mansion (the city museum) in Cadwalader Park in downtown Trenton at 10:00 am. The group will then travel via car pool to the starting point at Carnegie Road in Lawrence Township. Plan to join just one or all of the walks in the series. The program is FREE but donations are welcome and appreciated. Each program will provide information about both canal and local history. For further details and to register contact Bob and Linda Barth at (201) 401-3121 (or email: barths@att.net).

Oct. 11 & 12:
(Sat/Sun)
11am - 4pm
Alpaca Demonstration at the Blackwells Mills Canal House:
Patricia Flanagan of Swallow Hill Farm in Hillsborough, NJ will show how wools goes from the alpacas to finished products. There will be an alpaca on site. While you are there tour the historic canal house located on the corner of Blackwells Mills and Canal Road in Franklin Township. Registration is NOT required and admission is FREE!

October 14
(Tuesday)
7:30 pm
The Railroads of Kingston:
John Kilbride moderator of the Camden & Amboy Historians will give an illustrated talk on the railroads of Kingston including the C&A and Pennsylvania; with particular emphasis on the Rocky Hill Railroad and Transportation Company and Kingston Branch which connected Rocky Hill to Kingston and Monmouth Junction and beyond. Kilbride’s talk will follow a brief business meeting at the annual meeting of the Kingston Historical Society. The meeting will be held at 7:30 pm in the Kingston Firehouse on Heathcote Brook Road (just off Route 27.) Registration is NOT required and admission is FREE!

October 18
(Saturday)
11am - 5pm
Canalfest in East Millstone:
Join the residents of East Millstone and the Franklin Township Food Bank from 11 am - 5 pm for the Annual "Canalfest" to be held on Market Street in East Millstone. This will be an exciting family-friendly afternoon that celebrates the the rich history of the D&R Canal in the Millstone Valley and area community. There will be food, arts & crafts, live music, canoeing, and opportunities to learn more about the history of the area.

CanalFest is designed to strengthen the East Millstone community by bringing residents and other friends together, increase awareness/support of the Millstone Valley Fire Department and the East Millstone First Aid Squad, promote area businesses, and support the Franklin Township Food Bank. To that end, the planning committee is a partnership of residents, area businesses and community organizations operating under the organizational umbrella of the Franklin Township Food Bank. Proceeds from the event will benefit the food bank.

NOVEMBER EVENTS

Nov. 8 & 9
(Saturday & Sunday)
11am - 4pm
Art Exhibit and Sale at the Blackwells Mills Canal House:
Stop by the historic canal house on the corner of Blackwells Mills and Canal Road in the Franklin Township section of Somerset for this exhibit and sale. The splendor of nature and local scenes on canvas by local artist, Barbara Della Peruta. The house will be open on Saturday and Sunday from 11:00 am - 4:00 pm. Registration is NOT required and admission is FREE!

November 8
(Saturday)
10 am
Walk the Canal in Trenton:
Join the D&R Canal Watch as they continue an end-to-end hiking challenge along the length of the canal path. This Trenton walk from Ellarslie Mansion in Cadwalader Park to Old Rose Street is the next leg of this challenge. This walk will offer information about both canal and local Trenton history. See the Pedicaris waste gate, bridge tender's homes, with a special visit inside the Calhoun Street bridge tender's home. For this leg, participants are asked to meet at Ellarslie Mansion in Cadwalader Park, Trenton. This walk will provide information about both canal and local history. For further details contact Bill Valocchi at 609-989-1931 (or email: bval2@verizon.net) or Bob Barth at 201-401-3121.



Our Wish List
Please check the list below to see if you could donate any of the following items to the Park to enhance our interpretive programs! Donations would be greatly appreciated and are tax deductible! Contact the office if you are able to help out.

E-mail: dnrhistorian@verizon.net
Phone: 609-924-5705


A color printer that is compatible with Windows 2000, XP or Apple iMac

Field Guides

New Jersey History Books

Books on Canal History or Technology

Binoculars

Insect Nets

Mounted Animals for use in displays and/or in programs


We're Looking for a Few Good Volunteers...
Do you have time on your hands? Are you interested in history or nature? Do you have hands-on skills such as sewing, wood working or engineering? If so, we would love to hear from you! Our interpreters are interested in finding a few good volunteers who have an interest in the D&R Canal and want to help others learn more about it. A few projects you might consider "taking on" include:

Creating and sewing both a boy's and girl's typical 19th century outfit that can be used in hands-on programs;

Developing your own canal or 19th century related project;

Compiling an on-going bird list for all areas along the canal;

Creating a nature or history program for the public using your area of expertise.

If one of these projects interests you, please contact the park office and ask to speak with either the Historic Preservation Specialist or the Naturalist.

E-mail: dnrhistorian@verizon.net
Phone: 609-924-5705


REMEMBER: All programs are FREE!