VIDEO: Alberta students attend school on the creek

Day on the Creek teaches about environment, wildlife, habitat and the history and culture of the Pincher Creek area

PINCHER CREEK, Alta. — On an ordinary day, the path along Pincher Creek, from which the town gets its name, is a quiet place; ideal for a contemplative stroll to commune with nature.

For six hours, Day on the Creek changes that.

It’s a day to teach students about environment, wildlife, habitat and the history and culture of the region. Ideally, it will equip those students with an understanding and appreciation for all of those topics.

The third annual Day on the Creek, held May 29, attracted more than 650 students from kindergarten to Grade 12, who had access to numerous outdoor stations where 80 presenters and volunteers provided information and hands-on activities.

Topics included native plants and animals, aquatic and terrestrial insects, riparian ecosystems, First Nations history, bear safety, archeology and invasive species.

“It’s not really focused at the public, although of course the public is welcome,” said organizer Nora Manners. “It is focused on families because it’s the middle of the work week.”

Sara Downey of Alberta Parks equips a Day on the Creek participant with a ‘bug vacuum” used to collect insects without the need to touch or harm them. Once in the receptacle, they can be examined and identified. | Barb Glen photo

Manners works for the Waterton Biosphere Reserve, the organization that spearheads the event along with the town of Pincher Creek, the Livingstone Range School Division and Alberta Parks.

“I think the kids had a great time,” Manners said. “The students and the teachers are getting more comfortable with it. It’s unreal, the support that we have.”

Twenty organizations provided personnel and information for the day.

Garry Hackler’s collection of mounted wildlife was a fan favourite among student participants at Day on the Creek. The cougar, which took up major space on his display table, attracted much attention. | Barb Glen photo

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