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Calendar of Events
<March 2013>
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Trailhead Closed on Saturday morning 3-2-2013
McDowell Mountain Regional Park
Saturday, March 2, 2013 the Trailhead Staging Area will be very congested due to parking for a charity hike event. Mountain bikers riding the Pemberton are urged to stage at the Wagner Trailhead until afternoon.

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 7:00 AM - 1:00 PM    Duration: 6 hrs
Registration Required: No    
 
Contact: Rand Hubbell, Park Supervisor
Location: McDowell Mountain Regional Park
 
Address:
16,300 N. McDowell Mountain Park Drive
Fountain Hills, AZ, AZ  
85268
Hike for the Homeless - Estrella Mountain Regional Park
Estrella Mountain Park
“Take a Hike, Change a life!”. Register for St. Joseph the Worker’s 15th annual Hike for the Homeless. Hike distances and registration fees vary, so please check the following website for additional information: http://www.sjwjobs.org/hike-for-the-homeless

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 8:00 AM    
Registration Required: Yes    
Fee: varies - see website for additional information
 
More Info: http://sjwhikeforthehomeless.kintera.org/faf/help/helpEventInfo.asp?ievent=1042538&lis=1&kntae1042538=75121C6CD83E4A259E63E1EF23C7E14E
Contact: St. Joseph the Worker
 
Horses, Gold and Critters Oh My!- Cave Creek Regional Park
Cave Creek Regional Park
Get your boots on and come on out to Cave Creek Trailrides! Get a hands on “Old West” experience within our 3 Exploration Stations, where you will gain knowledge and connect as a group! Station 1 provides a great introduction to the world of horses from anatomy and feeding to cost of ownership and tack! At Station 2 you’ll receive basic riding instruction and be introduced to your own horse for a scenic trail ride through Cave Creek Regional Park. Last, at Station 3 the Ranger will introduce you to the unique critters that call the Sonoran Desert home and you will also get the chance to try your hand at gold panning while learning about the rich mining history of the area. This program is geared towards girl scouts (grades 4-5) earning a Horse Rider or Fan Badge. Advanced registration is required. For more information please contact Deb Bitton at 623-742-6700 or deb@cavecreektrailrides.com

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 8:00 AM - 12:00 PM    Duration: 4 hours
Speaker: Deb Bitton and Ranger Mark
Registration Required: Yes    
Fee: $6.00 per vehicle park entry fee + program fee
 
More Info: http://www.cavecreektrailrides.com
Contact: Deb Bitton at 623-742-6700 or deb@cavecreektrailrides.com
Location: Meet at the Horse Trailrides
 
Address:
37019 N. Lava Lane
Cave Creek, AZ  
85331
Progressive Fitness Hike #5 - Usery Park
Usery Mountain Regional Park
Want to increase your fitness level and also enjoy the outdoors? Hit the trails with us for a fun way to get back in shape! During this hike series, each hike will increase in length and difficulty in order to help you prepare for the grand finale hike – the 7.5-mile loop trail around Pass Mountain! This is a great way to get in shape and to hike many different trails in Usery Park at the same time. This fifth hike of the series will be approximately 6.5 miles. Please bring water, hats, and closed-toe shoes. Location: Trail Staging Area. Note: Participation in the 4th or 5th hike in this series is required to do the final hike.

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 8:00 AM    
Registration Required: No    
Fee: $6.00 per car
 
 
4th Annual Archaeology Expo - Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area
Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area
March 2 Saturday 9am-3pm 4th Annual ARCHAEOLOGY EXPO AT SPUR CROSS Join the park staff as well as the Arizona Archaeology Society for this day of fun and learning. Sponsored by Desert Foothills Chapter, Arizona Archaeological Society, the Town of Cave Creek, Cave Creek Museum, and Maricopa County Parks. Hikes to archaeological sites, booths, crafts, pottery and flint-knapping demonstrations, plus other hands-on children activities will be featured.

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM    Duration: One Day
Speaker: various
Registration Required: No    
 
More Info: 
Contact: Kevin Smith, park ranger at 480-488-6623 or kevinsmith@mail.maricopa.gov
Location: Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area
 
Address:
44000 N. Spur Cross Road
Cave Creek, AZ  
85331
Archery 101 - Usery Park
Usery Mountain Regional Park
Interested in archery? Curious about how to shoot a bow? Come to Usery Park and find out! You will discover how fun archery really is! Participants will experience a fun and safe introduction to recreational and international-style target archery. Equipment will be provided. This class is open to anyone ages 8 and up. Minors must be accompanied by an adult. Please bring water, hats, and closed-toe shoes. Meet at the Archery Range. Note: this class is also offered at 10:30am.

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 9:00 AM    
Registration Required: No    
Fee: $6.00 per car
 
 
Saturday Bird Walk - Usery Park
Usery Mountain Regional Park
How do you tell one brown bird from the next, and what are the first three items to look for as the little rascal flits off? Are you already a novice but interested in keeping a yearly, state or country bird list? Bird expert, Sandy Hornbaker, will talk about bird habitat, behavior, range, etc. as we go in search of the native birds in this area. Please bring binoculars, water, and closed-toe shoes. Location: Nature Center.

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 9:00 AM    
Registration Required: No    
Fee: $6.00 per car
 
 
Expo Hike #1 - First Mesa Ruins Hike
Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area
March 2 Saturday 10:00 am Expo Hike #1 - First Mesa Ruins Hike(moderate) Join professional archaeologist Mark Hackbarth on a hike up to First Mesa to see the largest archaeological site in the conservation area. Mark will discuss the Hohokam dwellings and their culture. This 2.5 mile hike is moderate requiring some uphill walking. Plan on at least three hours for this hike and talk with Mark. Bring plenty of water, appropriate footwear, snacks, and a hat.

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM    Duration: 2 hours
Speaker: Mark Hackbarth
Registration Required: No    
Fee: $3 per person
 
Contact: Kevin Smith, Park Ranger at 480-488-6623 or e-mail kevinsmith@mail.maricopa.gov
 
Expo Hike #2 - Rock Art of Spur Cross
Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area
March 2 Saturday 10:30 am Expo Hike #2 - Rock Art of Spur Cross (moderate) Join us for a two mile moderate hike with some uphill walking on loose gravel to see some of Spur Cross's petroglyphs. Plan on at least two hours for this hike. Bring plenty of water, appropriate footwear, snacks, and a hat.

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 10:30 AM - 12:30 PM    Duration: 2 hours
Speaker: Arizona Archaeological Society
Registration Required: No    
Fee: $3 per person
 
Contact: Kevin Smith, Park Ranger at 480-488-6623 or e-mail kevinsmith@mail.maricopa.gov
 
Expo Hike #3 - Metate Trail Archaeology Hike
Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area
March 2 Saturday 11:00 am Expo Hike #3 - Metate Trail Archaeology Hike(easy) Join us for an easier two-mile hike with some walking on loose gravel and over creeks to see some of the archaeolgical sites along the Metate Trail. Plan on about 1.5 hours for this hike. Bring plenty of water, appropriate footwear, snacks, and a hat.

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 11:00 AM - 12:30 PM    Duration: 1.5 hours
Speaker: Arizona Archaeological Society
Registration Required: No    
Fee: $3 per person
 
Contact: Kevin Smith, Park Ranger at 480-488-6623 or e-mail kevinsmith@mail.maricopa.gov
 
Reptile and Live Animal Feeding at McDowell- McDowell Park
McDowell Mountain Regional Park
Have you ever seen a snake eat? Bring your questions for Ranger Amy to our toasty Visitor Center to watch our exhibit animals being fed. Meet our baby tortoises, desert blonde tarantula and giant desert hairy scorpion. Feeding takes place at the Visitor Center.

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 11:00 AM    Duration: 1 hour
Speaker: Ranger Amy Burnett
Registration Required: No    
Fee: $6 per vehicle park entry fee
 
Contact: amyburnett@mail.maricopa.gov 480-471-0173x201
Location: McDowell Mountain Regional Park
 
Address:
16300 McDowell Mountain Park Dr.
Fountain Hills, AZ  
85268
Desert Edibles - San Tan
San Tan Mountain Regional Park
Mmmmm! Tasty! Learn about some of the appetizing delicacies of the Sonoran Desert inside the comfort of the San Tan Nature Center. Be prepared to be amazed, when you find out what makes a tasty treat in the desert, and what does not. We will also be offering a sweet sampling of Ranger Adam's famous Mesquite Pancakes and Prickly Pear Syrup. No utensils necessary.

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM    Duration: 1 hour
Speaker: Ranger Adam
Registration Required: No    
Fee: $6 vehicle park entry fee
 
More Info: http://maricopa.gov/parks/santan
Contact: (480) 655-5554 ext.201
Location: San Tan Mountain Regional Park
 
Address:
6533 W. Phillips Road
Queen Creek, AZ  
85142
Expo Hike #4 - Metate Trail Archaeology Hike
Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area
March 2 Saturday 1:00 pm Expo Hike #4 - Metate Trail Archaeology Hike(easy) Join us for an easier two-mile hike with some walking on loose gravel and over creeks to see some of the archaeolgical sites along the Metate Trail. Plan on about 1.5 hours for this hike. Bring plenty of water, appropriate footwear, snacks, and a hat.

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM    Duration: 1.5 hours
Speaker: Arizona Archaeological Society
Registration Required: No    
Fee: $3 per person
 
Contact: Kevin Smith, Park Ranger at 480-488-6623 or e-mail kevinsmith@mail.maricopa.gov
 
Venomous Creatures - Cave Creek Regional Park
Cave Creek Regional Park
Join Ranger Mark at Nature Center for a presentation about the venomous creatures you may find in the Sonoran Desert. Enjoy the beauty of these wonderful, misunderstood, and often maligned animals while learning fascinating facts and the important roles each creature plays in the desert ecosystem. As Marie Curie, French Physicist and two-time Nobel Prize recipient said “Nothing in life is to be feared. It is only to be understood.” Afterwards, Ranger Mark will be feeding all the critters!

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM    Duration: 1 hour
Speaker: Ranger Mark
Registration Required: No    
Fee: $6.00 per vehicle park entry fee
 
Contact: Ranger Mark - markpaulat@mail.maricopa.gov
Location: Meet at the Nature Center
 
Address:
37900 N. Cave Creek Parkway
Cave Creek, AZ  
85331
Feeding Frenzy! - Cave Creek Regional Park
Cave Creek Regional Park
It’s time to feed our critters! Come out and see how these fascinating creatures munch on lunch! Witness the different techniques each animal employs to consume its prey. Meet Ranger Mark in the Nature Center for this compelling consumption of calories!

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM    
Speaker: Ranger Mark
Registration Required: No    
Fee: $6.00 per vehicle park entry fee
 
Contact: Ranger Mark - markpaulat@mail.maricopa.gov
Location: Meet at the Nature Center
 
Address:
37900 N. Cave Creek Parkway
Cave Creek, AZ  
85331
Campground Nature Walk - Usery Park
Usery Mountain Regional Park
Join park host, Sandy Hornbaker, for a late afternoon sojourn through our campground and nature trail on a quest to spot desert wildlife and plants. Wildlife sightings are not guaranteed, but bring binoculars, your afternoon tea, and a little patience. Be prepared to walk one to two miles. Please bring water, hats, and closed-toe shoes. Location: Campsite 21 in the Buckhorn Campground.

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 4:00 PM    
Registration Required: No    
Fee: $6.00 per car
 
 
NEW!!! "Everyone's Getting ANTSY!" - Cave Creek
Cave Creek Regional Park
Head to the Nature Center to meet Ioulia Bespalova (grad student), Ti Eriksson (grad student), and Alyssa Holmes (undergrad student) from Arizona State University. They are studying ANTS and will be bringing LIVE colonies of these very "social" insects to share with us! They will also have a slide presentation and arts and crafts for the kids (and you, too)! Don’t miss this exciting opportunity to learn about these fascinating arthropods! Be sure to bring your curiosity and a camera! The ants go marching one by one, Hurrah! Hurrah!

Date: 3/2/2013
Time: 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM    Duration: 2 hrs.
Speaker: ***SPECIAL GUESTS!!!***
Registration Required: No    
Fee: $6.00 per vehicle park entry fee
 
Contact: Ranger Mark - markpaulat@mail.maricopa.gov
Location: Meet at the Nature Center classroom
 
Address:
37900 N. Cave Creek Parkway
Cave Creek, AZ  
85331