By John Bernard and Jim Hurley
The Arlington Regional Master Naturalists (ARMN) had our monthly Board meeting and end-of-year Chapter meeting on Wednesday, December 5, 2012 at the Fairlington Community Center. The Chapter meeting also included an art show and party. Over 60 people attended, including at least 54 ARMN members.
ARMN members brought and displayed their artwork which included photograph porfolios and other creations. After the business meeting, there was time for socializing with lots of goodies
Caroline Haynes, ARMN President, recognized numerous newly certified and recertified ARMN members for completing the minimum 40 hours of service and 8 hours of advanced training in 2012.
Erik Oberg, National Park Service (NPS) Ranger and Biologist, presented the George and Helen Hartzog Award plaque for Outstanding Volunteer Group to the ARMN Board. The Hartzog Award was awarded to ARMN on October 17, 2012 by the Eastern Capital Region of NPS.
The Hartzog Award recognizes volunteers for their hard work, skills, involvement, and contributions to innovative projects. ARMN members and other volunteers have given 2,600 hours of service to the George Washington Memorial Parkway since the partnership began in 2009. Opportunities to volunteer with the Park Service are described on its website. The NPS and ARMN relationship is a great example of the meaningful results that can be achieved by effective partnerships between government agencies and non-profit groups. Continue reading
By Sue Dingwell
The power of passion and persistence brought to life a new wetland last Saturday at Campbell Elementary School, a Title One, alternative school bordering Long Branch Park in Arlington. Two and a half years in the planning and fund-raising stage, the garden was installed by an all-volunteer crew at an event they called “The Big Plant.” The sun seemed to shine with a special brilliance as proud students threw their energy into the myriad tasks needed to get plants correctly placed and tucked safely into the spots marked for them.
That little girl dug tenaciously for a long time to get hole big enough for long-sleeved oak tree.
One of this fall’s Master Naturalist training class members, Pat Findiklogu, a teacher at Campbell for many years, formed a small committee three years ago to set the project in motion. She was on hand Saturday to help with the work despite the fact that she had retired from teaching last spring. The story of the permitting and permissions process was an epic indeed. There were many times when regulatory hurdles almost brought the project to a halt. I heard from a committee member, though, that every time they thought they were at a dead end, Pat would rally the troops: “They’re not going to stop us now!!” Continue reading
By John Bernard
Members of Arlington Regional Master Naturalists (ARMN) met for their chapter meeting and cookout on July 29 at Long Branch Nature Center (LBNC). Among other business, they recognized 13 newly certified Master Naturalists and the 68 members who have recertified through 2012.
Newly-certified Master Naturalist Leah Pellegrino receives her certificate from ARMN President Caroline Haynes and Kirsten Buhls, Virginia Cooperative Extension Educator and ARMN Chapter Advisor.
There was also an opportunity for ARMN volunteers to earn additional volunteer hours at LBNC with a work project prior to the Chapter meeting. Volunteers worked on a “natural meeting area” arranging tree stumps as seats.
ARMN volunteers arrange tree stumps to create a natural meeting area.
A view of the tree stumps circle that provides a natural setting for meetings.
This is just an example of the many volunteer opportunities that ARMN volunteers have for service hours to meet the annual 40 hours minimum certification requirements.
ARMN volunteers start off with basic training that includes basic background and skills in natural history, role of naturalist, Virginia biogeography and flora and fauna, native ecological concepts for aquatic, forest, and urban ecology, and citizen science. Classes are typically offered in the fall and spring. To get involved or find out more information, go to the ARMN.org. To find out more about basic training, go to the link for basic training.
Photos by John Bernard.
Come view “The City Dark” at:
Long Branch Nature Center
625 S. Carlin Springs
Arlington, VA 22204
On this Wednesday, 7/18, 7:30-9pm, with stargazing after the film, weather permitting.
“Is darkness becoming extinct? When filmmaker Ian Cheney moves from rural Maine to New York City and discovers streets awash in light and skies devoid of stars, he embarks on a journey to America’s brightest and darkest corners, asking astronomers, cancer researchers and ecologists what is lost in the glare of city lights. Blending a humorous, searching narrative with poetic footage of the night sky, The City Dark provides a fascinating introduction to the science of the dark and an exploration of our relationship to the stars. Winner, Best Score/Music Award, 2011 SXSW Film Festival. Produced in association with American Documentary | POV. ” For more information on the film and to see a trailer, visit http://www.pbs.org/pov/citydark/.
Free, but donations to the International Dark-Sky Association will be accepted. Bring your own favorite movie munchies and (non-alcoholic) drinks.