Learn about bears, have family fun at Forgotten Coast Black Bear Festival
Monday, October 10, 2011
Media contact: Jessica Basham, 850-528-1759
As fall settles into the Big Bend, the Florida black bear begins
foraging for winter. It's a perfect time to celebrate the state's
largest land mammal.
Come out for the third annual Forgotten Coast Black Bear
Festival, an event dedicated to helping people understand and live
in harmony with the Florida black bear.
The family-oriented festival is Saturday, Oct. 15, from 10 a.m.
to 4 p.m. at Sands Park in Carrabelle. The festival is free and a
great way for families to spend the day together doing something
fun and educational.
The small, Gulf-side community of Carrabelle is in Franklin
County, which sits in the heart of Apalachicola National Forest,
one of Florida's biggest undeveloped habitats for black bears.
"Our goal is for festival-goers to learn everything they always
wanted to know about the Florida black bear - and more," said David
Telesco, bear management program coordinator for the Florida Fish
and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC). "Helping people
understand bear behavior is one of the primary goals for the
festival. If people who live in bear country understand what makes
bears tick, they will know what they can do to discourage bears
from hanging around in their neighborhoods."
Telesco will offer informative presentations about black bears
and their biology. Betsy Knight will tell interesting stories about
wildlife rehabilitation, and Laurie McDonald of Defenders of
Wildlife will share tips on how to coexist with black bears.
Other activities at the festival include exciting tours into
bear habitat with Adam Warwick, an FWC biologist who gained instant
fame by rescuing a black bear from drowning in the bay off
Alligator Point. Join us in the storytelling tent, where you can
sit on hay bales and enjoy stories from local authors or listen to
great music by locally renowned southern rock and blues band King
Cotton and folk musician Dale Crider.
Bring your kids to the "Come Be a Bear" activity, and watch them
transform into a black bear and learn about the life of a bear
through the seasons.
The festival is presented by the FWC, Defenders of Wildlife,
U.S. Forest Service, Florida Forest Service, city of Carrabelle and
the Franklin County Tourist Development Council. For more
information about the third annual Forgotten Coast Black Bear
Festival visit www.mycarrabelle.com or call the festival
coordinator, Allen Loyd at 727-823-3888.