Orono Bog Boardwalk launches 11th year

Before reaching the Orono Bog, a boardwalk winds through a mixed forest where long-stemmed cinnamon ferns abound.
Before reaching the Orono Bog, a boardwalk winds through a mixed forest where long-stemmed cinnamon ferns abound.
Posted April 19, 2013, at 3:55 p.m.
Grass pinks brighten the background at a rest stop along the Orono Bog Boardwalk.
Grass pinks brighten the background at a rest stop along the Orono Bog Boardwalk.

The annual opening of the Orono Bog Boardwalk will take place at 7 a.m. Wednesday, May 1, with a brief ceremony that will include a special announcement about the future of the boardwalk. Members of the community are welcome to attend.

Maine Sen. Emily Cain, D-Orono, and Maine Rep. Ryan Tipping-Spitz, D-Orono, will serve as honorary openers, pending legislative commitments.

The wheelchair-accessible, 4,200-foot boardwalk is located in the Rolland F. Perry City Forest, commonly known as the Bangor City Forest, where it winds its way through forested wetland and out onto a broad, open peat bog. The forest trails and boardwalk are free to use 7 a.m.-6:30 p.m. seven days a week during spring and summer, with hours adjusting for day-length changes in autumn.

The boardwalk is the optimal place for people to learn about a variety of flora and fauna. It features seven interpretive stations, as well as numerous benches where visitors can rest and observe wildlife, such as migratory birds, and a wide variety of plants, including orchids and carnivorous plants.

An art show to benefit the boardwalk will be on display through May 20 at the Sohns Gallery at the Rock & Art Shop 36 Central St. in Bangor. For the show, artists from all over Maine submitted artworks in a range of prices that had a forest, bog, carnivorous plant or an otherwise fitting theme. A silent auction of the pieces will begin at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, April 25, at the gallery. Proceeds will be donated to the Orono Bog Boardwalk.

The boardwalk is jointly managed by the Orono Land Trust, the City of Bangor, and the University of Maine. Its operation and maintenance are funded entirely through donations, sales of boardwalk merchandise and grants.

A volunteer staff maintains the boardwalk and provides information and education for visitors, including school and community groups. Throughout the season, area experts contribute their time to offer specialized public programs on birds, wildflowers, dragonflies, bog hydrology, plant adaptations and more.

For information about the boardwalk and scheduled nature programs, visit oronobogwalk.org, email jim.bird@umit.maine.edu, or call 581-1697.

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