Great Backyard Bird Count Begins!

Bird Watching in Cleveland and NE Ohio | Ohio Birding –
Get outside and count some birds in this great, widespread, and important event from February 13th through 16th, 2009. For instructions and a place to post your results, see the National Audubon Society’s page on the Great Backyard Bird Count .


Feds sue Akron to enforce Clean Water Act and to stop city from polluting Cuyahoga River – Metro –

Feds sue Akron to enforce Clean Water Act and to stop city from polluting Cuyahoga River – Metro – “Akron, and other cities like Cleveland and Columbus, have older sewer systems in which raw sewage sometimes runs into storm sewer pipes and directly into waterways, including rivers and lakes, and may cause health problems for animals and humans.”

It is about time that this happened. Akron extends its sewer lines and stimulates more development, but fails to take care of its existing mess. The EPA should have enforced years ago.

Now, the problem will be paying for this. Maybe the feds can fork over the money to fix the problem? At an estimated $1 billion, it would only cost the same as about 3 days of our expenses in Iraq. Ain’t clean water worth that?


February Events at Malabar Farm State Park

Malabar Farm State Park in North Central Ohio has the cure for cabin fever!

Cross Country Skiing/Rentals

Thursday through Sunday
11:00 AM – 5:00 PM
$5.00 per rental hour

The ski trails are open and are currently graded as “Excellent – Snow depth 3″+ over 90% coverage over all trails”. The grad will remain intact if temperatures stay below freezing and will improve pending more snow fall. Please visit for current conditions.

Malabar Farm “Big House Tours”
Saturday & Sunday
12PM, 1PM, 2PM, 3PM, 4PM
$4.00 Adult
$3.60 Seniors
Under 18 $2.00

Malabar Farm Restaurant
Saturday: 11am – 9pm
Sunday: 11am – 7pm

Owl Walks (FREE)
February 7th & 14th
Saturday & Sunday
7:30 PM

A few more activities to round out your day…

  • Stop by the new Malabar Farm Songbird Aviary.
  • Take the kids to the Malabar Main Barn and discover our farm/petting animals.
  • Explore the rock shelters and caves in all of its winter beauty.
  • Eat our farm fresh products at the Historic Malabar Farm Restaurant (1820).
  • Rent a sled and find the nearest hill for a little adventure.
  • Ice Skate on the frozen ponds (weather and conditions pending).
  • Explore over 10 miles of picturesque hiking trails (For a sample, go to’s review of the Butternut Loop Trail.)
  • Purchase old fashioned Lehman’s products, Malabar Farm grass-fed meat, and fresh fudge in the Louis Bromfield Gift Store.

And…a sneak peak of March:

Malabar Farms FREE Maple Festival will be held March 7, 8 14, 15.

Get out and enjoy Ohio Parks!


Hamilton County Park District — Cincinnati, Ohio

Hamilton County Park District — Cincinnati, Ohio: “The American Heart Association and Hamilton County Park District have joined together to promote good exercise with the Hike For Your Heart event on Saturday, February 14 at 1:00 p.m.”

The outdoors is a great tonic for our bodies as well as out souls. Hiking and outdoor activity helps keep our hearts healthy and our heads clear. This event is a great opportunity to get outside and connect with nature while doing something for a good cause at the same time.


Garlic Mustard Video

Check out this interesting video about Garlic Mustard, a non-native invasive plant that is overrunning our woodlands.: garlic mustard video


Check out the Quarry Trail at Deep Lock Quarry Metro Park

Quarry Trail| Deep Lock Quarry Metro Park, Metro Parks, Serving Summit County

I recently had the opportunity to explore this great trail just south of Peninsula Ohio. In spite of the single-digit temperatures, it was an adventure well worth experiencing. With my breath providing a visible excise for my normally poor photography, I got even fewer photos worth sharing compared to a normal hike.

What I did get was a renewed sense of history. The little quarry here provided the mill stones for the company that eventually became Quaker Oats. Meanwhile, the Deep Lock (17 feet compared to an average of 9 along the Ohio and Erie Canal) helped more commerce between Lake Erie and points south. This now peaceful forest was once bustling with activity. Now, songbirds, rare plants, and hikers are the most activity this little bit of earth sees, save the occasional rumble of the nearby Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railway.

Sometimes it is hard, with all the worry about global climate change, urban sprawl, endangered species and everything else, to remember that some places that were used intensively are recovering over time. While I don’t mean to minimize the very real risks to our environment today, sometimes it is good to get outside and look at the bright side. Even if there is a chance of frostbite. Brrr. Read about the trail here: Quarry Trail