Outlying areas calendar for Aug. 22-28, 2014 _lowres

Visitors can take a guided canoe tour of Chicot Lake at Chicot State Park in Ville Platte starting at 9 a.m. Saturday, April 29. 


Visitors can go early for the canoe tour and hang around for the critters at Chicot State Park in Ville Platte on Saturday, April 29. 

The guided canoe tour of Chicot Lake runs from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. The site naturalist will take participants through the cypress-tupelo lake to learn more about the plants and animals that can be found in it, a news release says.

Park officials recommend you have canoeing experience to take the tour. Space is limited so early registration is advised. Visitors with their own canoes or kayaks are welcome but still need to register.

The Louisiana State Arboretum inside the park will present an "Aquatic Critters" program at 2 p.m.

Participants will help the ranger find and identify some of the frogs, crawfish and other creatures found in Chicot Lake.

For more information, call (888) 677-6100 or (337) 363-6289. 

Chicot State Park is the largest state park in Louisiana and offers camping, fishing, hiking and picnicking. The park is on La. 3042, 6 miles north of Ville Platte in Evangeline Parish.

Day-use admission to the park is $3 per person ages 4-61. Groups of 10 or more can make reservations in advance for special programs.

Historic cleanup

Take a road trip to northwest Louisiana for the Civil War Trust's "Park Day" at the Mansfield State Historic Site in Mansfield on Saturday, April 29.

Site staff are looking for volunteers to help clean the artillery carriages and pick up tree limbs from the historic battlefield trail. The cleanup runs from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and participants will receive a commemorative T-shirt while supplies last.

Volunteers should bring work gloves and wear weather-appropriate clothing, comfortable shoes and sunscreen.

For more information, call (888) 677-6267 or (318) 872-1474.

Senior sojourns

Seats are still available on a senior citizens bus trip to Maine from May 19-29.

An informational meeting about the trip will take place at 2 p.m. Sunday, April 23, at St. Paul's Lutheran Church on the corner of Old Hammond Highway and Tara Boulevard in Baton Rouge.

It is important for first-time travelers with the Louisiana Travelers group to attend.

An after-party for the group's recent trip to Memphis, Tennessee, is set from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, April 30. Call Mary Roussel, coordinator, at (225) 925-0642 for more information.

Louisiana Travelers is also planning a trip to Ark Encounter in Williamstown, Kentucky, from Aug. 20-26. The bus is full, but with a waiting list of only four, adding a second bus is unlikely, director Leslie Tassin said. 

For more information on any of the trips, visit grouptrips.com/LouisianaTravelers or call (225) 769-5872.

Flowery tour

The Madisonville Garden Club will hosts its annual flower show Wednesday, April 26, at Otis House Museum near Madisonville.

The museum in Fairview-Riverside State Park will be filled with floral arrangements of all sizes. The flowers will remain on display through Saturday, April 29, for visitors to enjoy during guided tours of the house.

Also Wednesday, a reception with refreshments will be held from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. under the canopy of oaks in the front yard.

The flower show is included with Otis House Museum tour, $4 per person ages 13-61. Seniors 62 and older and children 12 and younger are admitted free to the tour.

The park is 1 mile east of Madisonville on La. 22 in St. Tammany Parish, and it offers camping, a day-use picnic area on the Tchefuncte River, fishing and the museum.

For more information, call (888) 677-3247 or (985) 792-4652.

Follow Judy Bergeron on Twitter, @judybergeronbr.