Public Programs

The Elk Country Visitor Center’s dedicated conservation education department schedules informative programs for the learning enjoyment of the visiting public. In particular, the center hosts weekend programs on various wildlife topics—from elk talks to birding activities—that are at no cost to visitors. Please review the following schedule to find a weekend program that interests you!

Weekend Programs at the Elk Country Visitor Center

 

 

 

 

 

 

Saturday, July 15th  2:00 PM- “Skull-lock Holmes”
Here at the center we commonly get questions about animal bones and how to identify what animal they come from. Test your skull identification skills during this informative presentation and activity.

Sunday, July 16th  2:00 PM- “Navigation by Compass”
In a world where technology is always at our grasps, sometimes it is nice to get take a step back. Orienteering is a highly valuable skill that isn’t practiced much in our modern society. Forget about your GPS for a section and take a step back with us as we teach you how to navigate using only a map and compass.

Saturday, July 22nd  2:00 PM- “Invasive Species of Pennsylvania”
Invasive species are organisms that are not native to a given area. These organisms often have negative effects on plants and animals native to an area. Come learn about some of the invasive species that have invaded Pennsylvania, the damage they cause, and management efforts to remove them.

Sunday, July 23rd  2:00 PM- “All About Elk”
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earn all about Pennsylvania elk as KECA staff will provide you with information about the history of our elk herd, elk physiology and elk behaviors. KECA staff will be more than willing to answer any questions you may have about elk as well.

 Saturday, July 29th    2:00 PM- “Pennsylvania Trees”
Ever wonder what type of tree that is? Join a staff member for an educational hike around the center as we teach you how to identify different types of trees in Pennsylvania.

Saturday, July 29th  Ride for the Elk
Join us for the annual Ride for the Elk Motorcycle Ride.  Registration will take place at the Hitching Post from 10am to noon.  The ride leaves from the Hitching Post in DuBois, PA at noon and will travel through the beautiful Pennsylvania Wilds to through the Quehanna Wild Area, Sproul State Forest, Austin and return through Driftwood to end at the Elk Country Visitor Center.   For more info:  http://www.experienceelkcountry.com/BookingRetrieve.aspx?ID=72609

Sunday, July 30th  Ride for the Elk
Join us for the second day of our annual Ride for the Elk Motorcycle Ride. Registration will be from 8am to 10 am at the Elk Country Visitor Center.  The ride will leave from the Visitor Center in Benezette at 10 am and travel through the beautiful Pennsylvania Wilds to the Kinzua State Park, Port Allegheny, and Glen Hazel and return to Benezette.

Sunday, July 30th  2:00 PM- “Amazing Adaptations” 
Learn about some of the amazing adaptations animals have developed over time to survive. Afterwards stick around for a fun activity demonstrating how effective these adaptations can be.

Saturday, August 5th    2:00 PM- “Cute Calves”
Elk calving season is right around the corner. Come join us for an informative presentation on elk calves. In addition, learn about how the Pennsylvania Game Commission monitors these little cuties.

 Sunday, August 6th  2:00 PM- “Pennsylvania Black Bear Basics”
Join Pennsylvania Game Commission educators for a fun interactive program on Pennsylvania’s native bear. Participants will have the opportunity to touch a black bear skull, fur, claws, replica tracks and scat. Receive homeowner tips on how to deter nuisance bears and learn why our local wildlife conservation officers tag bears.

Saturday, August 12th  8:30-2:00 PM- “Bird Banding”
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lease stop in and meet guest speaker, Alex Sharp, for a morning of bird banding demonstrations here at the center. Bird banding is the procedure in which biologist place metal bands or rings on the legs of birds for individual identification and data collect. This bands allow biologist to monitor migration patterns, behavior, life-span, reproductive success, and population dynamics. Join Alex as he catches and bands birds providing you with information about the species he catches at the same time!

 Sunday, August 13th    2:00 PM- “Fish Habitat Management: Why do fish need cover?”
Join guest speaker Ben Page, PA Fish & Boat Lake Habitat Section Chief, for a closer look underwater in some of our Pennsylvania lakes.  You will find that Panfish, Bass, Walleye, Catfish, Muskellunge and other gamefish seek out structure to utilize for food and cover.  Enjoy several underwater videos of fish inhabiting newly placed structures provided by the PA Fish & Boat Commission (PFBC).  Learn about the PFBC’s fish habitat improvement projects on multiple lakes across the state.  Hear how you can improve your fishing success by using the PFBC’s fish habitat maps to find fishing hot spots.

Saturday August 19th Elk Expo
The 17th annual Elk Expo will take place from 8am to 8pm.  Vendors, music, seminars, contests, food and so much more. The Pa Game Commission Elk License drawing will be at 1pm.   For more info, www.ElkExpo.com

Saturday, August 19th—ELK EXPO (9-8 PM)   **Please note that programs are subject to change

10:00 AM- “Elk Explanations”  When do elk drop their antlers? How big are calves when they are born? Do you have questions about elk? Come join KECA staff for a question and answer style informational session. Bring all your burning questions you have about elk or other wildlife and KECA staff will try their best to answer them for you!

 12:00 PM- “Living With Snakes”   A large majority of the public are scared of snakes in one form or another. Come learn about these fascinating animals and how to identify the venomous snakes of Pennsylvania.

3:15 PM- Nature Trivia Game How well do you know Pennsylvania wildlife and the environment? Join us for a game of trivia that will test your knowledge of the world around you. Teams can consist of 3-4 people and all ages are welcome to play. The each member of the winning team will receive a free ticket to our 4-D Conservation Theater.

 4:00 PM- “Kids Corner” Bring the kids to enjoy some fun-filled activities at the KECA tent. Kids can do make and take nature crafts, bird feeders, and more. Also participate in some interactive education activities as well and learn a little more about the Pennsylvania elk herd.

 5:00 PM- “Oh Elk Game” Bring your kids (8+) to the amphitheater for an interactive learning activity. Kids will learn about how population dynamics work as they play this game.

5:30 PM – “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle Game” Kids (6+) will learn about the importance of recycling through a fun interactive game. Meet in the Main tent.

Sunday, August 20th Elk Expo
The 17th annual Elk Expo will take place from 8am to 5pm.  Vendors, music, seminars, contests, food and so much more.  The Keystone Elk Country Alliance Elk Tag Raffle will take place at 1pm.  For more info, www.ElkExpo.com

Sunday, August 20th—ELK EXPO (9-5 PM) **Please note that programs are subject to change

 10:00 AM- “Birding Competition” Think you know your birds? Grab your binoculars and come test your skills at the Elk Expo, with a birding competition. Birding or bird watching is the act of observing birds as a recreational activity. Thousands of people worldwide participate in birding every year. Do you think you have what it takes to be a birder? Come participate in our free birding competition with your family at the Elk Country Visitor Center. First and second place will receive a bluebird house or a bird feeder to take home with them.

 11:00 AM- “Bluebird Seminar” Join Pennsylvania Game Commission Educator, Mandy Marconi, for an educational presentation on Eastern Bluebirds. Eastern Bluebirds were subject to habitat loss and introduction of invasive species in the early 1900s, which led to their population decline. Learn about this little birds come back and how to get bluebirds in your backyard.

12:00 PM- Nature Trivia Game How well do you know Pennsylvania wildlife and the environment? Join us for a game of trivia that will test your knowledge of the world around you. Teams can consist of 3-4 people and all ages are welcome to play. The each member of the winning team will receive a free ticket to our 4-D Conservation Theater.

 1:45 PM – “Elk Explanations”  When do elk drop their antlers? How big are calves when they are born? Do you have questions about elk? Come join KECA staff for a question and answer style informational session. Bring all your burning questions you have about elk or other wildlife and KECA staff will try their best to answer them for you!

2:30 – “Bringing Back the Bees” Join us for a brief presentation on Colony Collapse Disorder and its negative effects on our honey bee population. Afterwards join our KECA staff for a tour of our new pollinator gardens, where will discuss the importance of native wildflowers and how you can create a pollinator garden of your own.

4:00 PM- “ Kids Corner” Bring the kids to enjoy some fun-filled activities at the KECA tent. Kids can do make and take nature crafts, bird feeders, and more. Also participate in some interactive education activities as well and learn a little more about the Pennsylvania elk herd.

Saturday, August 26th  2:00 PM- “All About Elk” Learn all about Pennsylvania elk as KECA staff will provide you with information about the history of our elk herd, elk physiology and elk behaviors. KECA staff will be more than willing to answer any questions you may have about elk as well.

Sunday, August 27th  2:00 PM- “Predators of the Sky”  Pennsylvania is home to many different species of birds. Most of the time when raptors are sited it is from a distance, and can be very hard to identify. This informative presentation will help you better identify Pennsylvania’s predatory birds.

The Elk Country Visitor Center is operated by the Keystone Elk Country Alliance, a 501(c)(3) non-profit conservation organization. We are located at 134 Homestead Drive, Benezette, PA. Please use Winslow Hill Road in your navigation system. For more information call 814-787-5167

 

**Please, no Pets on the trails or on the Center grounds.
Please leave them at home for their safety and the safety
of our wildlife.**

The Elk Country Visitor Center can accommodate large groups or tours. Call for more information or to schedule your group.

The Elk Country Visitor Center is operated by the Keystone Elk Country Alliance, a non-profit 501c(3). We are located at 134 Homestead Drive in Benezette, PA. For more information call 814-787-5167 or visit us at www.ExperienceElkCountry.com.

LOCATION:
Elk Country Visitor Center

950 Winslow Hill Road, Benezette, PA 15821
814-787-5167
 

Hours:

April – May: Thursday – Monday | 9am – 5pm
(closed Tues & Wed)
June – August: 7 days a week 8am – 8pm
September – October: 7 Days a Week | 8am – 8pm
November – December: Thursday – Monday | 9am – 5pm
(closed Tues & Wed)
January – March: Saturday & Sunday Only | 9am – 5pm

**Closed Easter Sunday

 

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