Submitted by PAM VARGA, SAHLI PARK MANAGER
A lot has been happening at Sahli Nature Park this summer. First of all, we have the biggest butterfly you have ever seen – not a Monarch or a Tiger Swallowtail, but a wonderful butterfly sculpture. The sculpture, made from recycled metal items, was created and donated by Karlyn and Scott Wilson. The giant butterfly and metal flowers that go along with it were created from an old tractor disk harrow, pliers, faucet handles, garden tools, an old steel grate, and pieces of rebar. The “caterpillar” perched on one of the leaves is made from a rusty piece of chain and two large nails. Karlyn and Scott used a plasma cutter to shape the butterfly’s wings and the flower petals. Their creativity and imagination turned these pieces of “junk” into a wonderful work of art. The sculpture, located between the greenhouse and the main parking lot, is a unique and beautiful addition to the park. Thank you Karlyn and Scott for sharing your talents with us.
Another butterfly new to the park is our butterfly shaped garden. This butterfly, located near the greenhouse, is planted with red, yellow, orange, white and bi-colored Zinnias. This flower filled “butterfly” attracts lots of real butterflies and bees.
Nearly up to their knees in creek water and mud, the girls in Girl Scout Troop #28823 and their leaders Amanda Bradley and Beth Curtaccio built two bridges over muddy sections of park trails. The girls dug channels and laid pipe to direct the water, built wooden boardwalk bridges over the streams, and placed stones around the stream banks to contain the water and prevent erosion. Their hard work has made the trails safer and more enjoyable for our park visitors. Thank you Troop #28823 for your hard work and dedication to the park.
Girl Scout Troop #27161and their leaders Gretchen Brinn and Kelly Manning took up their hammers and nails to build ten birdhouses and install them around the park meadows. Within days, the birdhouses were inhabited by birds, mostly little brown Wrens. We thank the girls and so do the birds.
The Story Hike continues to be a hit with younger park visitors, thanks to Stacey Rider and the Chippewa Library. Pages from a children’s book are posted around the meadow by the green-house. Kids and their families read the story as they enjoy walking the meadow trail. Everyone looks forward to reading a new story every month. Thank you Stacey and the Chippewa Library for creating this combination of reading and nature for our young visitors.
The Lorax visited Sahli Nature Park thanks to Courtney Colaizzi and the Beaver County Library System. The familiar Dr. Seuss character greeted children while library volunteers and volun-teers from the park told the children about Monarch butterflies and helped them plant wild-flower seeds. Courtney has also arranged several art classes for adults at Sahli Park and Brady’s Run Park. Information about the classes is available on the Sahli Park Facebook page. We really appreciate our partnership with the libraries. Thanks for helping us provide environ-mental education to our visitors.
The park has also formed a new partnership with Penn State Beaver County Master Gardeners. Master Gardeners have helped to plant our gardens, grow plants in the greenhouse, and take care of our caterpillars and butterflies in our butterfly nursery. We thank them for making our park beautiful.
It’s been a busy summer – new partners, new gardens, and a new sculpture. Come to the park to see how we’ve grown!