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2017 Pinelands Summer Short Course

The first Pinelands Summer Short Course will take place on Thursday, July 27th, at Kramer Hall, in Hammonton, NJ.

This daylong event features educational fieldtrips and presentations that explore the unique history, ecology, and culture of the Pinelands. The event is sponsored by the NJ Pinelands Commission and Stockton University. (5/17/2017 - Press release)

To register plese (click here) or you may register by telephone through Stockton's Continuing Studies office at (609) 652-4227  (Monday - Thursday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.)

For questions regarding course content please call the Pinelands Commission's Public Programs office at: (609) 894-7300 ext. 125.

All Day Field Trips:

Batsto River Plant Life Tour: A full-day, guided canoe trip along the Batsto River, with a focus on plant life: Ryan Rebozo, Ph.D. Director of Conservation Science at the Pinelands Preservation Alliance, and Jean Montgomerie, Environmental Specialist with the Pinelands Commission, will lead a canoe trip along the Batsto River. The trip will start on the Batsto River at Quaker Bridge and end at Batsto Lake. Participants will make several stops to investigate and learn about Pinelands plants growing along the river’s edge. (9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.)

Industries in the Pines: A full-day van tour focusing on the traditional industries in the Pinelands: Guide Jeff Larson, who has been exploring the Pinelands for three decades, will lead a five-hour van tour that will highlight past industries in the Pinelands. Participants will learn about Piney culture and history while making several stops to see places such as Hampton Furnace and other areas where traditional industries once thrived in the Pinelands but have since been reclaimed by the forest. (9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.)

Journey Between Two Rivers: A full-day hike between the Mullica and Batsto rivers: Naturalist John Volpa will lead a daylong, four-mile hike along the Mullica and Batsto rivers. Attendees will walk along the uplands and edges of the two rivers while seeing and learning about native plants and animals, as well as other unique features in the Pinelands. (9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.)

Class Room Presentations:

Butterflies and moths: Jen Bulava, Park Naturalist at Burlington County Parks, will provide a photographic overview of butterflies and conspicuous moths of the Pinelands. Attendees will learn about behaviors, habitats, food sources and insect identification. (9:00 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.)

The Berry Healthy Blueberry: Amy Howell, an Associate Research Scientist with Rutgers University, will present new research into the health benefits of consuming blueberries. Attendees will learn about the many benefits of eating blueberries and how the beneficial compounds in the berries work in the human body. (9:00 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.)

Domestication on the highbush blueberry: New Jersey is among the top producers of blueberries in the United States, with most of the production occurring in the Pinelands. Nicholi Vorsa, Director of Rutgers University’s Marucci Center for Blueberry and Cranberry Research and Extension, will provide details on the domestication of highbush blueberries and how native blueberry plants from the Pinelands contributed to the genetic base of currently grown cultivars. (9:00 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.)

Agriculture in the Pinelands: Agriculture has long been a vital industry in the New Jersey Pinelands. Keely Ditizio of Salem County Vocational Technical High School will deliver a hands-on presentation focusing on the unique soils and ecology in the Pinelands. Attendees will also learn about the history of agriculture in the Pinelands. (9:00 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.)

The Battle of Chestnut Neck: Historian Norman Goos will highlight the Revolutionary War battle that was fought at Chestnut Neck, a settlement on the Little Egg Harbor River in present-day Port Republic City. (9:00 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.) & (1:00 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.)

History of New Jersey’s Wine Industry:  A presentation that highlights the history of winemaking in New Jersey: New Jersey has been a vibrant place for winemaking since the Colonial days. Tom Consentino, Executive Director of the Garden State Wine Growers Association, will delve into the state’s history of winemaking, covering the early founders of the industry, the establishment of Renault Winery in the Pinelands, the effects of prohibition, the current state of winemaking and future plans for the industry’s growth. (1:00 p.m. – 3:00 a.m.)

The Pinelands of My Past: Attendees will hear a live performance by New Jersey native Gabe Coia, who is a singer, songwriter, guitarist and musical composer. His 2016 album, “The Pines of My Past,” features 11 original songs that celebrate the history, folklore, and ecology of the Pinelands. (2:15 p.m. – 3:00 a.m.)

Afternoon Tours & Walks:

Atlantic Blueberry Tour: A two-hour, guided tour of the Atlantic Blueberry Company’s commercial farm in Hammonton: Attendees will get the full farm experience as they tour the Atlantic Blueberry Company’s processing and packing plant on Weymouth Road. After the tour of the plant, attendees will load a labor bus that will transport them to the expansive fields to see and sample different varieties of blueberries. (1:00 p.m. – 3:00 a.m.)

Hammonton Historic Walking Tour: A guided walk of Hammonton’s historic downtown: Angela Donio, Chairperson of the Historic Preservation Commission of Hammonton, will lead a two-hour walk of downtown Hammonton. Participants will stroll through Hammonton’s Business District and Historic Bellevue- Packard-Grape-Central Residential District as Donio shares historic photographs of the area while telling interesting tales of the years gone by. (1:00 p.m. – 3:00 a.m.)

Dragonflies of the Pinelands: A two-hour, guided walk at Batsto Lake, with a focus on dragonflies and damselflies: Attendees will venture to Batsto Lake to learn about the fascinating diversity and behavior of Pinelands dragonflies and damselflies. Jennifer Bulava, Park Naturalist at Burlington County Parks, and Gil Mika, Park Naturalist at Wharton State Forest, will lead the two-hour walk, which will also include a stop at the Annie M. Carter Interpretive Center at Batsto. (1:00 p.m. – 3:00 a.m.)

2017 Pinelands World Water Challenge

Teachers and students are invited to join staff from the Pinelands Commission, NJ DEP and the Jacques Cousteau National Estuarine Research Reserve to participate in the Pinelands World Water Monitoring Challenge, to be held at Batsto Lake in Washington Township, Burlington County on Friday, October 20, 2017 - from 9:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Teachers must pre-register classes by contacting the Pinelands Commission at (609) 894-7300 ext. 125 or via e-mail: (schools are selected on a first-come, first-served basis). Students will sample water quality and experience the Pinelands’ natural and cultural resources firsthand. They are also asked to bring a bagged lunch for a picnic on the historic grounds of Batsto Village. (carry in/carry out)

(click here for flyer) pdf.

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Pinelands Events Calendar 
(This calendar lists a variety of events throughout the Pinelands.)