A naturalist’s letter to Santa Claus

One of our naturalists left his letter to Santa out on his desk, and we wanted to share a copy, in case anyone out there wants to lend Mr. Claus a hand this year.

Dear Santa,

I don’t really need a lot this year as I have the privilege of working in one of our great provincial parks: Presqu’ile. Perhaps you’ve visited or seen it as you fly over?

It is pretty easy to pick out from the air, sticking into Lake Ontario like it does. We get lots of birds landing here on migration to rest, which many people like to come and see. You’d be welcome to have a break here too.

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Christmas at Presqu’ile

Whether you’re perusing for holiday gifts, soaking in the arts, or simply in need of a hot drink after a November hike, it’s the perfect season to visit Presqu’ile Provincial Park!

Christmas at Presqu’ile unfolds November 4, 5, 8, 11 and 12, 2017. Presented by the Friends of Presqu’ile Park, this annual event features wares from more than 150 of Ontario’s artisans, artists and crafters.

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Billions travel Ontario’s migration superhighways

Today’s post comes from Brad Steinberg, our Natural Heritage Education and Learning Coordinator. An avid birder, Brad identifies several “migration superhighways” and the role provincial parks play in protecting Canada’s Important Bird Areas. 

Being stuck in traffic sucks. Especially with young kids.

This sentiment recently ran through my head while mired in bumper-to-bumper traffic on the Don Valley Parkway in Toronto, Ontario. (My conclusion was reinforced when my son loudly announced his urgent need for a bio-break.)

But as frustrating as highways can be; they are vitally important to us, providing a reliable route from one place to another.

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5 questions with an ops tech

Welcome to our “5 Questions” series! We chat with park staff around the province to give you an inside look at what it’s like to work at Ontario Parks.

Rachel Windsor has worked in Ontario Parks for six years. She started as a summer maintenance student for two seasons, then moved over to the park store at Presqu’ile Provincial Park. She trained under the park store manager for a season before taking over that role the following year.

Since 2015, Rachel has been acting in the Ops Tech role, taking the lead on the maintenance team and making sure park operations run smoothly.

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The trouble with balloons

Today’s post comes from David Bree, our Senior Natural Heritage Education Leader at Presqu’ile Provincial Park, and passionate protector of Ontario’s shorebirds.

I don’t know Jason. But I do know he turned six sometime in the last two months and he had a wonderful party with cake, presents and balloons, surrounded by friends and family.

I hope he had a good time, but I wonder if he knows the legacy of his sixth birthday — from my perspective — is unsightly litter, extra work and possibly untimely death.

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Campsite vacancy highlights: June 24-26

Summer has officially begun!

Taking your RV on a road-trip this St. Jean Baptiste Day weekend? A lot of parks still have lots of campsites available — including some great waterfront spots to provide the perfect spot for the first swim of the summer.

Scout out your ideal campsite on our Campsite Browsing/Reservation tool (including pictures of most campsites!), or check out these featured campsites (available as of noon, June 23):

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Campsite vacancy highlights: May 20-23

Looks like Ontario’s getting great weather for the Victoria Day long weekend, and it’s not too late to book a camping getaway!

In northern, central and southern Ontario, many parks still have a good selection of sites available, especially for tent campers. In the north, there are even a few roofed accommodations available!

Scout out your ideal campsite on our Campsite Browsing/Reservation tool (including pictures of most campsites!), or check out these featured campsites (available as of noon, May 19):

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10 reasons you should try spring camping

To many, camping brings visions of sunshine, the leaves trembling as the trees slowly sway in the wind, sand and waves gently crashing around your toes as you enjoy your days on the beach. Your face is flush with your first dose of spring sunshine and your ears are filled with the beautiful songs of migrating birds.

Sounds wonderful, doesn’t it?

Here are our top ten reasons to try spring camping this season:

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Get outdoors for March Break 2016

Give your kids a sensory treat on March Break. Getting outside and exploring the natural world is a chance for kids to balance virtual with real.

According to research, that’s a good thing for a child’s overall health, development, creativity and joy.

Join one of our special events or create your own exciting park adventure.

Below are five March Break ideas to get you started:

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