Outdoors Briefs

Youth and family activities

Go snorkeling

Break in the new snorkeling site at Queen Branch in Macon County during an event 1-2:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 2.

The site is one of 10 stops spread across Western North Carolina’s new Blue Ridge Snorkel Trail. During the event, Mainspring Conservation Trust will unveil new educational signage on the land it has previously conserved and then get attendees in the river exploring their underwater backyard. Creatures like tangerine darters and spotfin chubs are common at the site, as are many types of fish, salamanders, mussels, crayfish and more.

Free, with loaner snorkels available. Registration is required at mainspringconserves.org/events. The event is weather-dependent. In case of heavy rain leading up to Aug. 2, the water will be cloudy and the event will be rescheduled.

Balance with the family

Explore the science of balance during Family Night at 5 p.m. Thursday, July 20, at the Jackson County Public Library in Sylva.

Families will work together to explore the science of balance by manipulating the placement of weights on toys, structures and even people. Free and co-sponsored by Friends of the Jackson County Public Library. 828.586.2016.

Explore the Moon

Head to the Jackson County Public Library in Sylva at 3 p.m. Wednesdays for a kids’ program about moon exploration.

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Randi Neff will lead these activities focused on NASA’s Artemis program, with aims to one day establish a base on the Moon. Children will learn more about what that involves, from the trip there to techniques for survival on the Moon.

Co-sponsored by Friends of the Jackson County Public Library. For more information, call 828.586.2016.

Kids program teaches responsible exploration skills 

Learn how to explore the woods without leaving a trace during a family-oriented program 10:30 a.m. to noon Friday, July 21, at the Albert-Carlton Cashiers Community Library in Cashiers.

Presented by Friends of Panthertown, the program will explore how to have fun in Panthertown Valley while practicing Leave No Trace principles. All ages are welcome at this free program.

Sports registration open in Jackson

It’s time to sign up for sports with Jackson County Parks and Recreation.

• Registration is open for fall youth soccer through Monday, July 31. The league is open to players born in the years 2010-2019, with birth certificates required for all first-time players. Games will be on Saturdays at the Cullowhee Recreation Park starting Sept. 9, with practice beginning in mid-August. Volunteer coaches are needed. The $60 fee includes shirt, shorts and socks.

• Register for the Church 3v3 Basketball League through Saturday, July 15, with games played Thursday evenings at the Cullowhee Recreation Center starting July 20.  Players must be at least 14 years old, and registration is limited to eight teams. Team fee is $150.

• Register for the golf league through Monday, July 31. Play will be Tuesday nights at the Smoky Mountain Country Club starting Aug. 15. Fees are $10 to enter plus $25 per week paid to the course.

• A youth volleyball tournament will be held at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 18, at the Cashiers/Glenville Recreation Center for rising third through sixth graders. Cost is $50 per team with four players on each team.

Register at jcprd.recdesk.com. For more information, call 828.293.3053 for Cullowhee or 828.631.2020 for Cashiers.

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