Chapman State Park beach to open

Chapman State Park’s swimming beach is scheduled to open to the public Friday, May 23, at noon. For the remainder of the season, swimming hours will be 8 a.m. to sunset daily. Chapman State Park reminds visitors that the beach is unguarded and swimming is at the visitor’s own risk. The presence of a child younger than 10 in a designated swimming area unless accompanied or supervised competently and effectively by a person at least age 14 is prohibited. There may be no more than five children under the supervision of one person.

For more information, call the park office at 723-0250.

The concessionaire, BEi, will also open Friday. BEi’s holiday weekend hours will be 1 to 8 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday and noon to 6 p.m. Monday. The concession provides canoes, kayaks and paddle boats for rent as well as food, snacks and firewood for sale.

Many activities are scheduled at Chapman this weekend:

Movie night from 9 to 10 p.m. Friday, May 23, will feature “Season of the Bear.” Enjoy Volume 1 as you watch American Black Bears up close and personal. See bears in the four seasons living their lives in the wild. Meet at the Park Amphitheater.

On Saturday, there will be “Lake Investigation” from 4 to 5:30 p.m. Join the park naturalist to explore Chapman Lake. Dress to get wet! A few pair of waders will be available for use. Nets will be provided. Meet at Parking Lot #4.

Also Saturday, a “Geocaching at Night” program will take place from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Join the park naturalist for an introduction to geo-caching and then enjoy a high tech scavenger hunt in the dark. GPS units will be available on a first come, first served basis. Please bring a flashlight. Meet at the Park Amphitheater.

Sunday’s activities will include a non-denominational worship service at 10 a.m. at the Park Amphitheater and an Eco-Sand Sculpture Competition from 3 to 4:30 p.m. Are you up for the challenge? Come out to the beach to learn about ecosystems and enter a nature-themed sculpture into the contest. Small prizes and certificates will be awarded to winners. Bring your own sand equipment. Meet at the beach. Canoe Chapman will complete the day Sunday from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Come to the Beach Concession Stand for a short lesson on basic boating safety and then take a canoe tour on the lake and the creek. Kayaks will also be available to try. Pre-registration is required as canoes and kayaks are limited. You may bring your own canoe or kayak, but you must still register. Registrations can be made by calling the park office at 723-0250 by Saturday, May 24.

On Monday, Memorial Day, “Fish for Free Day” will be held all day. No fishing license is required. All other regulations apply. Family Fishing will take place from 9 a.m. to noon. Join the park naturalist for a day of fishing. Poles and bait will be provided. No fishing license required. Meet at the spillway, across from Pavilion #1. A “Salamander Safari” will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. Monday. Find out about salamanders of Pennsylvania, where they live, what they eat, what makes them so unique and also where to find them. We’ll head to Penny Run to catch and identify salamanders and newts. Wear shoes you can get wet. Meet at Parking Lot #1.

Upcoming Events:

May 31: Women’s Outdoor Workshop

June 21: Saw Whet Owl Banding

June 28: The American Bald Eagle

Aug. 19-21: Discover E

Oct. 4: Fall Festival

For those who you need an accommodation to participate in park activities due to a disability, contact the Pennsylvania Bureau of State Parks at 1-888-PA-PARKS (voice), (717) 558-2710 (local or international voice), or 711 (AT&T Relay Services). With at least three days notice, interpreters for people who are deaf or hard of hearing are available for educational programs. For more information on Chapman State Park or any of Pennsylvania’s other state parks, call 1-888-PA-PARKS between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday; or visit DCNR’s website: www.dcnr.state.pa.us (select Parks).