Enjoy a Creeping, Crawling Morning at Camp Bayou's Fall Open House

The open house will take place Oct. 27 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Hillsborough County’s Parks, Recreation and Conservation Department invites everyone to enjoy a creeping, crawling morning while learning about nature's much-maligned critters at Camp Bayou’s Fall Open House.

This event will be held Saturday, Oct. 27 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Camp Bayou is located at 315 S. Tamiami Trail, Ruskin.

This year’s theme, Out of the Dark, highlights a variety of creatures, dispelling myths about some while revealing the need to respect others. Throughout the morning, there will be several activity tables, some with live critters to handle, such as millipedes and ant lions. Games and crafts also will be available.


  • 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. - Activity tables open
  • 9:30 a.m. --Going Buggy: Discover the wonders of the invertebrate world with Dr. George, Camp Bayou’s entomologist.
  • 10 a.m. -- Off To The Races... Cockroach races! Pick one of Camp Bayou's resident Cockroach Racers or bring your own to see which can scurry the fastest. All cockroaches (large Palmetto bugs only) entering the race must be registered at the membership table by 9:45 a.m. Check the Nature Notes blog for details.
  • 10:30 a.m. -- Snake Stroll: Look for Bettina and Xerxes, the albino corn snake, who will be out and about for a breath of fresh autumn air. Xerxes will be back in the Nature Center after the 11 a.m. for his weekly mouse if anyone wants to join him for lunch.
  • 11 a.m. --Species Walk: Make an animal mask in the morning or wear your Halloween costume, then join others in a guided tour along the trails and through the old fishing cabin and meet Dan the Fisherman. All those who take part in the Species Walk will receive a small token for participating. Cabin restoration volunteer Frank will be on hand to answer questions about the work completed on these restored Giant's cabins and what more is in store for them in the future.
  • 11:30 a.m. --National Food Day Buffet: For a small fee, several alternative treats to typical Halloween sweets will be available for a good-for-you snack.

Registration is not required, but encouraged. Door prizes will be drawn on the half hour from the list of all participants who register online at campbayou.org. Door prizes include Seminole pumpkin seedlings, goodie bags and other surprises.

For more information on Camp Bayou, visit www.campbayou.org or call 813-641-8545.


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