Families can go wild on Audubon's Enchanted Trail - East Valley Tribune: West Valley

Families can go wild on Audubon's Enchanted Trail

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Posted: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 7:30 pm

The Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center hosts the third annual Enchanted Trail/Sendero Encantado from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Friday through Sunday.

Audubon Arizona invites the community to attend Enchanted Trail/Sendero Encantado, a nature-themed Halloween festival, taking place at the Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center.

During Enchanted Trail guests can trick-or-treat while enjoying an evening of fun and adventure along the center's nature paths. Lit by thousands of glow-lights, the surrounding Rio Salado habitat comes alive at night, featuring hands-on games and activities about wildlife by night.

Trailside activities include a glow-in-the dark critter café, a spooky bat cave and the chance to meet costumed characters, including the grumpy Trash Troll. On Sunday, guests will have a chance to meet Howler, mascot of the Phoenix Coyotes hockey team.

Enchanted Trail also features live animals, including snakes, spiders, and centipedes and other nocturnal critters, such as owls and bats from the Arizona Game and Fish Adobe Mountain Wildlife Center. During their stroll, guests have a chance to solve the "Mystery of the Enchanted Trail" by uncovering clues about the featured nocturnal animals. At the end of their adventure, families and children create their very own animal mask-a bat, owl, coyote or skunk.

The Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center is at the heart of the Rio Salado Habitat Restoration Area in south Phoenix. A once degraded area, the area is now a lush riverside habitat, and the restored stream and surrounding land boast more than 200 species of birds as well as native desert animals such as coyotes, javelinas and jackrabbits. The free-admission Audubon Center offers a variety of programs, including family nature walks, wildlife encounters and school field trip programs, as well as seasonal events such as the Enchanted Trail and Migration Celebration in April. A pollinator garden full of native, nectar-producing plants is the newest addition to the Audubon Center.

This free family event is at the Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center at 3131 S. Central Ave. in Phoenix.

For information, visit riosalado.audubon.org.

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