Friends of 
Mason Neck State Park

November 2018 Newsletter

02 Nov 2018 1:44 PM | Thomas Blackburn (Administrator)

November 2018 Newsletter

Save the Date for Swanfall 2018, 

the Friends of Mason Neck State Park's

Holiday Event

Please join us on December 2, 2018 for the Friends of Mason Neck State Park’s Fourth Annual Holiday Event: Swanfall at the Jammes House in Mason Neck State Park.  You can enjoy a light buffet, followed by a fascinating presentation by Ashley Kennedy, a PhD candidate in the Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware, who grew up on Mason Neck.

The Jammes House is a former hunting lodge in Mason Neck State Park, located on the banks of Occoquan Bay.  It will be decorated for the holidays, and has stunning views over the Bay and the Potomac River. The Jammes House is not normally open to visitors, so take advantage of this rare opportunity to see the house and experience its magnificent setting.  We’ll have lots of tasty treats for you to sample at our buffet.

Take a fascinating look into the lives of  birds as you watch Ashley Kennedy's stunning videos of  birds bringing food to their young.  Guiding avian conservation efforts, Ashley's research focuses on determining which insects are the most important in birds’ diets.  Learn what you can do in your own backyard to attract the insects that are vital to a healthy bird population.

Ashley graduated from Hayfield High School and received a Bachelor of Science from Johns Hopkins University and a Master of Science Degree from the University of Delaware.  She has completed internships/seasonal positions at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, the National Zoo, and the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, and worked as an educator for the Delaware Nature Society and a taxonomist for Delaware Mosquito Control. She currently is employed in the lab of Dr. Doug Tallamy, the noted author of "Bringing Nature Home." Ashley is a Science Policy Fellow of the Entomological Society of America, a 2018 recipient of the Entomological Society of America’s John Henry Comstock Graduate Student Award, and a member of the Delaware Native Species Commission. 


Stay tuned; registration for this event will open on November 13, and it always fills up quickly. 

Record Crowds Attended the Park's 

"Park After Dark" Evening

A huge crowd of 225 adults and children attended Park After Dark on October 20.  They took advantage of a unique opportunity to learn about what happens in the Park after the sun goes down.  Everyone enjoyed stories, s'mores and cider around the campfire.  

Our favorite Park residents were there to explain their lives in the Park.  



Adults and older children had an opportunity to experience the woods in the dark with "no lights" hikes, learning how well their senses adjust to an environment with no artificial lighting.  Everyone had a great time during a beautiful evening.

Friends of Mason Neck State Park
Will Participate in the 
Mount Vernon Environment Expo on 
November 10

On November 10th, the Friends of Mason Neck State Park will participate in the first Environment Expo held by Fairfax County’s Mount Vernon District.  We’ll be showcasing our efforts to promote environmental stewardship, including our campaign to keep single use plastic bottles out of our waterways. Please join us for a morning of free workshops, information and ideas!  

Mount Vernon Environment Expo:

Saving the Earth One Person at a Time

8 a.m.-noon, Saturday, November 10

Walt Whitman Middle School Auditorium

2500 Parkers Lane, Alexandria

Attractions Include:

Over 20 exhibitors, useful info, and free stuff!

The film “Hometown Habitat” shown continuously.

Informative Workshops:

Let’s Talk Trash!

Audubon at Home: Landscaping for Wildlife

Tree Care 101

The Right Tree in the Right Place

Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Play the Carbon Footprint Game!

How Clean is Our River?

Learn to be a better steward of our environment.

Free! No need to register or RSVP—just come!

For more information:



We would love to have you join the Friends of Mason Neck State Park!  Memberships fund the many Park activities we support each year.  And for as little as $20 per year, you will enjoy monthly newsletters, emails about special events and priority registration for special events such as our members-only Owl Moon in September, and Swanfall in December, and other activities during the year. You can sign up right here:  

Join the Friends of Mason Neck State Park  


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