Ocean County Press Release
TOMS RIVER – While it might be warm and cozy indoors, the Ocean County Department of Parks and Recreation still offers plenty of activities to get outside and explore the beauty of nature.

"Our 27 county parks and conservation areas are just as breathtaking in the winter as they are during the warmer months," said Ocean County Freeholder Deputy Director John C. Bartlett Jr., who serves as liaison to Parks and Recreation. "They also offer a host of activities for all ages giving residents the opportunity to enjoy what Ocean County has to offer all year."

Although it is not prime time for kayak tours and seining, the winter months offer the opportunity for a chance to see migrating birds and other wildlife.

For example, Cattus Island Park in Toms River hosts free live animal talks and turtle feedings that are open to all ages. Animal talks are scheduled from 11 to 11:30 a.m. and turtle feedings are scheduled from 1:30 to 2 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.

Located in Beachwood, Jakes Branch County Park hosts discovery nature walks, weather permitting on Sundays at 1:30 p.m. through March 26. The walks are free and open to all ages.

In addition, monthly bird walks are scheduled at Cloverdale Farms in Barnegat on Saturday, Feb. 10 and March 10 from 9 to 11 a.m. These free events are for ages 10 to adult and require registration.

Ocean County Park in Lakewood offers Naturalists Nights for ages 12 to adult from 6 to 7 p.m. on Feb. 5, 14, and 22. Each event costs $5 per person.

"With over 4,000 acres of preserved land within the county park system, we encourage residents to take advantage of the parks in Ocean County," said Ocean County Freeholder Director Gerry P. Little. "No matter what the temperature may be outside, take a walk in any of the parks to see what nature has to offer on a trail, or stop in at the environmental centers at Jakes Branch or Cattus Island."

Ocean County Parks and Recreation also recently launched a new website. The website makes it easier for residents to find park information, things to do, and programs that are scheduled.

"The website is a great tool for residents to learn more about Ocean County Parks and Recreation," Bartlett said. "Everything you need to know is easily accessible right at your fingertips."

The interactive maps, YouTube Channel, program guides and more can all be found at http://www.oceancountyparks.org/.

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