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Braennan Fields, 10, learns the proper technique of how to shoot a bow and arrow at the 2019 Mohican Wildlife Weekend.

ASHLAND – Visitors can experience the habitats of birds and bats firsthand, learn about fly-fishing and more at the 20th annual Mohican Wildlife Weekend, April 23 to 25.

Attendees will discover natural history and heritage at 13 program sites across Ashland and Richland Counties. Each offers workshops and demonstrations that engage both beginners and experienced naturalists.

An ideal event for families, this fun and educational weekend features more than 30 hands-on activities and workshops for all ages, including birding boat tours, nature photography and crafts, wagon tours, wildlife interactions and much more. New this year, guests can earn up to five different survival hat pins, as well as a special hiking stick medallion by attending programs.

With the theme of "Survivor Mohican," this year’s Wildlife Weekend promises to be unforgettable. Marked by a keynote presentation by one of the stars of the History Channel’s outdoor survivalist series “Alone,” Carleigh Fairchild, will share stories from the 91 days she spent in the wilderness of Patagonia and Mongolia. As the featured speaker on Friday, April 23 at 7 p.m., guests can meet Fairchild at Pleasant Hill Lake Park as explains how she used her skills to live wholly off the land.

Fairchild will offer insight into the psychological effect of such extreme isolation. The event will take place at an outdoor covered stage area with plenty of social distancing, though space is limited for this free event, with registration and details found at MohicanWildlifeWeekend.com.

Program sites include: Gorman Nature Center, Malabar Farm State Park, Mohican State Park and Lodge, Clearfork Reservoir Marina, Ohio Bird Sanctuary, Fin Feather & Fur Outfitters, Pleasant Hill Lake Park, Charles Mill Lake Park, Byers Woods, Fowlers Woods, Hazel Willis Woods, Shelby Wetlands and Landoll’s Mohican Castle.

While registration is not required for programs, some have limited space and are offered first come, first served depending on activity and location. Most venues are outside, with all following strict COVID-19 sanitation, distancing and mask procedures. Tickets must be purchased at mohicanwildlifeweekend.com for the birding boat tours.

TRAIL GUIDE RELEASED

Just in time for April 24 “Trails Day,” Destination Mansfield also announces the release of the new Mohican Regional Trail Guide, produced by Mohican Trails Club. Ohio's largest and only multi-trails guide it covers more than 170 miles and features trails for all hiking experience levels and types, including hiking, mountain biking, bridle and water trails, as well as paved bikeways throughout Ashland and Richland counties. This up-to-date and expanded edition is the area’s most comprehensive and accurate trail map.

Highlighting GPS-marked trailways, trailheads, facilities and points of interest, the guide helps visitors enjoy the area’s many fun, safe and socially distanced outdoor travel experiences. The trail guides are available starting April 1 for $2 each at park office locations and local area businesses. Proceeds fund trail maintenance and Mohican Trails Club educational programs. 

A destination unlike any other, Mansfield and Richland County, Ohio offers unusual travel adventures and experiences, such as spending the night in a haunted former state prison where Hollywood blockbuster movies are shot, world-class motorsports, skiing, hiking, biking, golf, and loads of other outdoor adventures attract families and visitors of all ages. Complete visitor information and free visitor guides are available at DestinationMansfield.com or by calling (800) 642-8282.

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