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Public Programs

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Christina D. Sorensen

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Parks, Recreation and Open Space

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 Harris Lake County Park staff offers a variety of public educational programs for all ages year-round. Visit our calendar of events, check out our August e-Newsletter and sign up for the newsletter to stay up to date!

Scroll down or select a program series below to learn more about our offerings:

Our staff also offers public programs at the American Tobacco Trail! 
Check out the ATT programs page for details.
We would love your feedback!
Did you attend one of our programs? Let us know how we did!
Complete our brief public program evaluation online.
Now Available!
Online Public Program Registration
You can now register for public programs online at your convenience
and pay for them with a credit/debit card!
Register for any of our programs by clicking the Harris Lake icon next to the program, or click the one below to search for programs by location, age, date and more!
Learn more under How to Register.


Families roasting marshmallows

Each person attending family programs must be registered through the online system. Children under 14 must be accompanied by an adult.
Evening Campfire
Friday, August 26
8–9:30 p.m.
For all ages
$1 per person
Bring the kids out for some late summer fun before school begins! Roast marshmallows over the fire and go on a short night hike to see who is out and about. Marshmallows and roasting sticks will be provided. Please bring a camp chair and water bottle. Meet at the Cypress Shelter.
Geocaching 101
Friday, September 9
3–4:30 p.m.
Ages: 6 and up
$1 per person
Do you enjoy discovering new ways to use technology in the great outdoors? If so, geocaching is for you! Geocaching is like a treasure hunt where participants use GPS coordinates to track down hidden “caches." Learn what geocaching is all about and head off to find a geocache in the park! We will provide GPS units and instruction on how to use them, but feel free to bring your own unit or smartphone with a geocache app. Register early as class size is limited. Meet at the Cypress Shelter.
Family Disc Golf Lessons and Play Time
Saturday, September 24
9 a.m.noon
For all ages
This special instructional event is for players of all levels. Disc golf professionals from Cary Area Disc League will be here to provide lessons for beginners or advanced skills for the more experienced. Register for an "Introduction to Disc Golf" session at 9 or 10:30 a.m. (choose one) or an advanced skills session at 10:30 a.m. Head out onto the course afterwards to practice your new skills! Bring your own discs or borrow ours. Meet at the disc golf gravel parking lot.
Register online for one of the sessions by clicking below:
This free program is in celebration of "TACO" (Take A Child Outside) Week.
Cunning Coyotes
Friday, September 30
3–4 p.m.
For all ages; best for 6+
Coyotes are some of the most adaptable mammals around and they are found in every county in North Carolina. Learn about these elusive and highly misunderstood creatures, many of which live right here at Harris Lake County Park! Meet at the Cypress Shelter.
This free program is in celebration of "TACO" (Take A Child Outside) Week.

Preschool children at program

Preschool Programs

Programs meet at the Cypress Shelter.
All children must be accompanied by an adult.
Nature Tots 
Discover the natural world through stories, hands-on
nature activities, games, crafts and more!
Ages: 1–3 years with an adult
Time: 10–10:30 a.m.
Fee: $2 per child
Fall Leaves
Monday, September 12
The leaves are getting ready to change color as fall approaches. Through a story, matching leaf game and craft, children will be introduced to the magic of fall. Meet at the Cypress Shelter.
Kids Discover Nature
Young kids will discover nature with an adult in this new series.
Our monthly nature themes will be brought to life through stories,
games, crafts, hikes, snacks and other hands-on activities.
Ages: 2–6 years with an adult
Time: 11 a.m.noon
Fee: $4 per child
The Magic of Fall
Monday, September 12
As the leaves prepare to change color, we know fall is coming. Through a story, fall leaf game, hike and craft, children will be introduced to the magic of fall. Meet at the Cypress Shelter.


Park staff teaching children

Programs for Kids


Check back soon for more exciting opportunities just for kids!

 Adult workshop in park shelter


 Programs and Workshops for Teens and Adults

Check back soon for more exciting opportunities just for teens and adults!

Wood duck eggs in nest box

Citizen Science Thursday  


Ages: 8 and up
Time: 35 p.m.
Help the park staff with our citizen science projects! Each month will vary depending on what needs attention. Projects may include monitoring bird houses or other artificial habitats, cleaning or repairing boxes/habitats or installing additional projects.
Come prepared to learn and work as you contribute to our citizen science research and our Natural Resources Inventory Database. Dress for the weather, bring a water bottle and wear sturdy shoes. Meet at the Cypress Shelter.
Click on one of the dates below to register online:

Park staff with trash collected at Big Sweep

Big Sweep

September 18, 2016
noon3 p.m. 
Join us for a fun volunteer
service opportunity!
Help keep Harris Lake clean! Volunteers are needed to help collect trash along the lake shore and along New Hill Holleman Road, preventing litter from reaching Harris Lake. Minimum age for shoreline cleanup is 6; minimum age for roadside cleanup is 10.
All volunteers must wear close-toed shoes or boots, bring a filled water bottle, hat, sunscreen, insect repellent and your own work gloves. We will have loaner gloves if needed. Dress for the weather. We will provide trash bags for all and reflective vests for the roadside crew. All volunteers must sign the Wake County Volunteer Release. Volunteers under age 16 must be with a guardian or adult group sponsor.
All participants must be registered in advance. Register online by September 16
Meet at the park office for introductions and assignments.
Large volunteer group with trash collected at Big Sweep



Haunting at Harris

Saturday, October 8, 16 p.m.
Don't miss our 14th annual Haunting at Harris: Rise of the Legends!
Famous legends, urban lore and crazy characters, oh my!
Come as you are or show off your Halloween costume at this FREE family event and meet Blackbeard, Bigfoot, the Loch Ness Monster and more amazing legends!
Play games, create crafts, meet some crawly critters,
enjoy face painting, try out our obstacle course and more!
Tickets to meet the legends on our wagon rides will be available at the event on a first-come, first-served basis.
You must be present to receive a ticket. Rides depart every 30 minutes from 1-5:30 p.m. Tickets will be handed out at 12:30 p.m. for rides departing from 1-3 p.m. and again at 3 p.m. for rides departing from 3:30-5:30 p.m.
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Would you like to volunteer to help with event games and activities
or on our spooky wagon ride? We would love to have you!
Call us at 919-387-4342 or email to sign up!


 How to Register for Public Programs

Wake County Parks, Recreation and Open Space has launched one of our
most requested features - an online registration system.
You can now sign up for a public program online
and pay for it with a credit/debit card!
To register for one of our public programs, click the link by that program
to be taken to the registration page on our online registration website.
The most common registration questions are answered on our FAQ page.
If you still need further assistance after visiting that page or if you have a
question about a program, please call the park office at 919-387-4342.
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Interested in a private group program? Please note that you will still need to contact park staff by phone at 919-387-4344 or by email at to schedule school field trips, birthday parties and other group programs.
Are you unable to register online with a credit/debit card? Contact the park office
at 919-387-4342 or email us at for assistance.

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Content Type: Article Page
Version: 314.0
Created at 7/5/2012 4:48 PM by Christina D. Sorensen
Last modified at 8/24/2016 5:14 PM by Erin Latimer





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