Daily Archives: August 8, 2013

Great Plains — America’s Lingering Wild

The PBS affiliate in Kansas City, KCPT, will show a great documentary by Nebraska conservation photographer Mike Forsberg on thewildlife of the Great PlainsIt’ll air from 7-9 pm on Tuesday, August 13th.

Shot in High Definition by Nebraska Educational Television’s national documentary team, Great Plains — America’s Lingering Wildwill feature Michael Forsberg making photographs on location in some of the most remote places in the Plains. Viewers will get an up-close look at how Forsberg endures the harsh conditions necessary to capture rare photographs of elusive species of birds, mammals, fish and amphibians that inhabit the region.

The program will draw on Forsberg’s bank of tens of thousands of photographs, in addition to the 150 that were published in the book, and will enlist historical images and motion pictures to help tell the story of the transformation of the Great Plains. Along the way viewers will meet people who care deeply about the Plains — from wildlife biologists and ranchers to school kids who are using the book in their classroom studies.

State Trail Grants Awarded

Deadline for next round of applications is Sept. 1

The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT) has awarded $2 million in State Trail Program grants to help fund 16 recreational trail projects around the state. The grants were made possible when the state opted out of the Federal Recreational Trails Program (FRTP) in 2012 so more funding would be available for the overall pool of transportation alternatives.

The department received more than $5 million in grant requests for the $2 million that was available, representing over $7.7 million in potential investments in trails and trail amenities to improve the overall quality of life for Kansans. The State Trails Program, like the FRTP, provides for an 80/20 match of approved expenses, with the local entity supplying the 20 percent. Projects must meet accessibility and environmental criteria. Sponsoring entities are also evaluated for their ability to administer the projects and their past performance in handling similar grants.

The following projects were awarded funding under the State Trails Program:

Milford Nature Center – Boardwalk Replacement, $7,576

Elk City State Park – 

Trail Project/Timber Road

, $50,000

Prairie Spirit Trail State Park – Mini-excavator and equipment storage facility, $62,386

City of Paola – Wallace Park Trail, $51,950

Webster State Park – Coyote Trail Restoration, $10,000

Kanza Rail-Trails Conservancy – Flint Hills Nature Trail, $900,000

City of Chanute – Katy Hike and Bike Trail, $56,000

City of Overland Park – Oak Park Trail Replacement, $38,640

Kaw Nation – Allegawho Project, $350,000

Pratt B-29 Museum – B-29 Museum Interpretive Trail, $31,216

USD 316 Selden – Community Walking Trail, $33,200

USD 345 Topeka-Seaman – Viking Trail, $160,000

City of Pratt – Linear Park, Green Sports Complex, $66,760

Clinton State Park – Trailside CXT (toilet), $150,000

Eisenhower State Park – West Point Shelter, $18,810

KDWPT-Kansas River Trail – Signage, maps, brochures, $13,462

The department will participate in the Federal Recreational Trails Program for federal fiscal year 2013. The application deadline is September 1, 2013. Application forms are available on the KDWPT website at http://ksoutdoors.com/news/State-Parks/Grants.

2013 Annual Wildflower Weekend

                     Kansas Native Plant Society’s (KNPS) Annual Wildflower Weekend!

Anyone who has been to the Kansas Native Plant Society’s (KNPS) Annual Wildflower Weekend (AWW) in the past knows it is the highlight of the year for those who love native plants and enjoy being around people with the same passion. The theme this year is: “Landscapes of the Smoky Hills: Then and Now.”

On Friday the group will meet at Maxwell Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center at noon, tour the refuge, tour a private prairie and attend a campfire cookout. On Saturday morning the KNPS will hold its meeting at Room #201 Peters Science HallKansas Wesleyan University inSalina, which includes a guest speaker Allen Casey, as well as the Awards Presentations, Photo Contest, and Silent Auction. In the afternoon the group tours prairies at the Smoky Hills Air National Guard Range and another prairie at The Land Institute. Sunday includes a visit toCoronado Heights, where they will hike and enjoy a picnic lunch. In the afternoon the group heads to Kanopolis State Park & Mushroom RockState Park.

The photo contest is a popular part of the AWW. We encourage all members to enter photos. Due to unforeseen problems in setting up the all digital photo contest, the contest will operate as in years past. Please print your photos and bring them to the Saturday meeting where judging will take place. See the Photo Contest for all rules, categories and past winners.

A complete itinerary can be found at  2013 AWW Itinerary (PDF) contains all information concerning the AWW. It includes tour locations and directions, weekend schedule, and photo contest rules as well as hotel listings and the meal reservations form. KNPS members receive it via USPS about a month before the weekend.

            The event is free and open to the public. Attendees are welcome to join the group for some or all of the events throughout the weekend. If you plan to eat with the group on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, you need to pay in advance. Make Meal Reservations for the 2013 AWW.

            Print the itinerary, make your hotel reservations, and pay your meal reservations (send a check or pay online), and come to the AWW!

            For more information during anytime in the weekend, contact Jeff Hansen: 785.806.6917.

Printable flyer at http://www.kansasnativeplantsociety.org/documents/AWW2013Flyer.pdf