St. Johns County Naturalist Programs

Explore St. Johns County

AyoLane Halusky, County Naturalist   |   P: (904) 209-0348   |   F: (904) 209-0321   |   E: ahalusky@sjcfl.us

Activities at St. Johns County Parks may be scheduled for school trips, home school groups, Scouts, 4-H and other youth or adult groups. Park Naturalist Programs are free and open to the public. Contact AyoLane Halusky, County Naturalist at ahalusky@sjcfl.us or call (904) 209-0348 to schedule activities.


Announcements, Events, Activities

Kid's Beach Yoga
Friday, March 15 from 4:00 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.
Friday, April 12 from 4:45 p.m. – 5:45 p.m.
Where: SJC Pier Pavilion, 350 A1A Beach Blvd., St. Augustine Beach
Details: Learn to relax your mind and body with some simple, kid-friendly stretches, exercises, and activities. Please wear loose clothing and bring your own towel or mat. This program is FREE and open to kids ages 4 to 12. Kids Yoga Details. For more info, contact Kelly Ussia at kussia@sjcfl.us or 904-209-0335.

9th Annual Kids' Fishing Clinic
When: Saturday, March 16
Time: Registration starts at 7:00 a.m.
Where: St. Augustine Marina at Vilano Beach Pier, 245 Vilano Rd.
Details: We've partnered with Ancient City Game Fish Association for the 9th Annual FREE Kids' Fishing Clinic with registration on a first-come, first-served basis. The first 200 kids (age 12 and under) to register will get a bait bucket and goodie bag as well as a free McDonald's lunch. Fishing Clinic Details. For more info, call Donna Frantz at 904-814

Florida Master Naturalist Program – Coastal Restoration
When: Monday, March 18 through Wednesday, March 20
Time: 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Where: GTM Research Reserve & GTM Research Reserve Marineland
Details: We’ve partnered with GTM Research Reserve to offer a Florida Master Naturalist Program course focused on Coastal Restoration. This program is for adults of all knowledge levels and is comprised of classroom presentations, hands-on activities, and field trips. Coastal Restoration Registration. For more info, contact Kelly Ussia at kussia@sjcfl.us or 904-209-0335.

904 Naturalist Series – Exploring the Life of Birds
When: March 20, 22, 23, 27, and 29 and April 3
Time: 12:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Where: Main Library Branch and various locations around St. Johns County
Details: Learn about the diverse environment that surrounds us and become a 904 Naturalist. There will be four programs with each one comprised of six classes held over three weeks. The third program is focused on Exploring the Life of Birds. Participants must be able to attend all six classes. This program is FREE and open to adults ages 18 and up. Life of Birds Registration. For more info, contact AyoLane Halusky at ahalusky@sjcfl.us or 904-209-0348.

Turtles of Florida
When: Tuesday, March 26
Time: 2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Where: Anastasia Island Library, 124 Sea Grove Main St., St. Augustine
Details: Turtles are unique reptiles that can occupy a multitude of habitats. Join Park Naturalist Kelly Ussia for an engaging talk about the various turtle species that live in Florida. Seating for this event is first-come, first-served. This program is FREE. Turtles of Florida Details. For more info, contact Kelly Ussia at kussia@sjcfl.us or 904-209-0335.

Everyone Can Conserve: Pollinators
When: Wednesday, April 3
Time: 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Where: Solomon Calhoun Center, 1300 Duval St., St. Augustine
Details: Birds, bugs, and more! We've partnered with GTM Research Reserve for a family-friendly night focused on the pollinators found in Northeast Florida including a presentation, hands-on activities, and light snacks and refreshments. This program is FREE and open to all ages. You must RSVP on Eventbrite to participate. Pollinators Registration. For more info, contact Kelly Ussia at kussia@sjcfl.us or 904-209-0335.

Owl Prowls
Thursday, April 4 – Alpine Groves Park Registration, 2060 FL-13, Switzerland
Thursday, April 25 – Vaill Point Park Registration, 630 Vaill Point Rd., St. Augustine
Time: 7:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Details: Join Park Naturalist AyoLane Halusky and learn about the creatures of the night. Explore our parks at sunset in search of our resident owls. Bring your questions and share your stories about the nighttime forest activities. This program is FREE and open to all ages. You must RSVP on Eventbrite to participate. For more info, contact AyoLane Halusky at ahalusky@sjcfl.us or 904-209-0348.

Owl + Sunset Symphony
When: Friday, April 5
Time: 7:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Where: Beluthahatchee Park, 1501 SR 13, Fruit Cove
Details: Learn about owls and enjoy nature's symphony during the transition from light to dark featuring a discussion about owls and nighttime creatures. Then participants will go outside on the deck and watch birds fly to roost for the evening as the sun starts to go down. This program is FREE and open to all ages. You must RSVP on Eventbrite to attend. Owl + Sunset Symphony Registration. For more info, contact AyoLane Halusky at ahalusky@sjcfl.us

Kayak Fishing
Wednesday, April 10 from 9:00 a.m. –  1:00 p.m. –  Six Mile Creek Kayak Fishing Details
Wednesday, April 17 from 9:00 a.m. –  1:00 p.m. –  Hallowes Cove Kayak Fishing Details
Details: Join Park Naturalist AyoLane Halusky for a morning of freshwater fishing while you explore various creeks, coves, and the St. Johns River. Bring your own boat and fishing license. The cost of this program is $20. For more info and to register, contact AyoLane Halusky at ahalusky@sjcfl.us or 904-209-0348.

Freshwater Fishing 101
Wednesday, April 10 – Freshwater Fishing 101: Fish ID & Regulation Registration
Wednesday, April 17 – Freshwater Fishing 101: Tackle Box Necessities Registration
Wednesday, April 24 – Freshwater Fishing 101: Knot Tying Registration
Wednesday, May 1 – Freshwater Fishing 10: Live & Artificial Bait Registration
Wednesday, May 8 – Freshwater Fishing 101: Traps & Nets Registration
Time: 9:00 a.m.
Where: Shands Pier, 9934 Shands Pier Rd., St. Johns
Details: Learn the ins and outs of freshwater fishing in Florida. Sign up for one class or attend the whole series. Bring your own gear and learn while you fish! Please note that all participants must have a Freshwater Fishing License or be a Florida Resident age 65 and up. Obtain a fishing license. For more info, contact Kelly Ussia at kussia@sjcfl.us or 904-209-0335.

Wild Edibles + Medicinal Plants
Thursday, April 11 – Wild Edibles + Medicinal Plants Alpine Groves Park Registration, 2060 FL-13, Switzerland
Thursday, April 18 – Wild Edibles + Medicinal Plants Vaill Point Park Registration, 630 Vaill Point Rd., St. Augustine
Time: 10:00 a.m. –  12:00 p.m.
Details: Join Park Naturalist AyoLane Halusky and learn about wild edibles and medicinal plants found in our parks. Bring your questions and journals to record your findings. This program is FREE and open to all ages. You must RSVP on Eventbrite to participate. For more info, contact AyoLane Halusky at ahalusky@sjcfl.us or 904-209-0348.

Native Landscaping Lecture Series: Lawn Care
When: Friday, April 12
Time: 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Where: THE PLAYERS Community Center, 175 Landrum Ln., Ponte Vedra
Details: We've partnered with UF/IFAS Extension St. Johns County for a lecture on Florida-Friendly Landscaping with a focus on how to irrigate, fertilize, and maintain your lawn utilizing Florida-Friendly principles. Lawn Care Registration. This program is FREE, but you must register on Eventbrite to attend. For more info, contact Kelly Ussia at kussia@sjcfl.us or 904-209-0335.

Living With Snakes + Gators
When: Monday, April 15
Time: 3:00 p.m. –  4:00 p.m.
Where: St. Johns Golf Club, 4900 Cypress Links Blvd., Elkton
Details: Join Park Naturalist Kelly Ussia for a family-friendly presentation about the snakes and alligators found throughout Florida and maybe even in your backyard. This program is open to all ages and is FREE, but you must RSVP to participate. For more info and to register, contact Kara Pound at kpound@sjcfl.us or 904-209-0383.

McCullough Creek Kayak Trips
When: Daily trips from Thursday, April 25 through Sunday, April 28
Time: 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Where: McCullough Creek Soft Launch, 2310 CR 13 South, Elkton
Details: Come explore McCullough Creek and the St. Johns River with our Park Naturalists as you learn about the unique history and diverse wildlife of the area.
Fees: SJC Resident providing own boat $20; Non-SJC Resident providing own boat $30; SJC Resident using a county boat $40; Non-SJC Resident using a county boat $50
When setting up a reservation, include your name, phone number, email, date of trip you would like to attend, residency status, and if you will be using a county kayak. For more info, contact Kelly Ussia at kussia@sjcfl.us or 904-209-0335.


Vision

To provide St. Johns County residents and visitors with opportunities to become better educated about the wilderness systems, historical relevance and sharing St. Johns County's Blue and Green-Ways areas along side the natural communities, mutually benefiting from each other.

Mission

To provide opportunities for the visitors and citizens of St. Johns County to experience and learn about our local natural and historical areas, creating a deeper connection while supporting sustainable communities that work with the Earth's natural systems.

Goals and Values

  • Education: Offering programs that teach individuals and groups about our environment, flora and fauna, local history, and the interaction between natural systems and the developed world. These programs are designed to foster connections with the environment by dispelling fears and fables and empowering individuals with knowledge, safe wilderness practices, and positive experiences.
  • Exploration: Come kayak and hike through our Green- and Blue-way spaces with a trained naturalist. Develop a life-long connection with the environment while exploring our passive parks and waterways. Offering group and individual tours, special events and programs. Public and private, day and overnight trips can be arranged seasonally.
  • Preservation: As we come together as a community that understands the value of our natural areas, we can develop ways to promote, protect, and preserve local wilderness and waterways for future generations. The St. Johns County Naturalist Program will work with local conservation groups and volunteers in environmental programming, events, and clean-ups.

Programs & Activities

  • Nature Walks and Programs
  • Kayaking
  • Master Naturalist Classes
  • Volunteer & Educational Opportunities
  • Explore Blue-way and Green-way Trails

SJC Parks and Recreation – Where everybody plays.