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Les Cockrell: Area state park slates variety of activities

It promises to be a busy weekend at Ray Roberts Lake State Park with hikes, a bike tour and programs on animals planned for area families.

First up will be a “Wildlife Detectives” program at 5 p.m. Friday at the Johnson Branch unit’s amphitheater near the fishing pond. The program teaches children and adults how to find traces of animal activity including through a short track-hunting hike.

Later on Friday, a night hike is planned at Johnson Branch. The two-mile hike will be on a paved trail and will start at 8 p.m. at the pavilion in the Dogwood parking lot. Participants are encouraged to wear sturdy shoes and bring water and a flashlight.

A guided bike tour is planned at 10 a.m. Saturday at the park’s Isle du Bois unit. Kelly Lauderdale, park interpreter, said the two-mile ride will be family friendly and there will be frequent breaks to explore interesting features of the park.

Participants must provide their own bicycles and safety equipment and should meet at the Greenbelt Corridor parking lot on U.S. Highway 380 in Denton.

A program titled “The Fast the Furriest” is planned at 5 p.m. Saturday at the Johnson Branch unit.

Participants will learn how to identify the animals found in the park and will meet at Pavilion 1.

A night hike is planned from 8 to 10 p.m. Saturday at the Johnson Branch unit. Hikers will search for signs of insect activity and nocturnal animals.

Participants should wear sturdy shoes and meet at the pavilion in the Dogwood parking lot. Water and a flashlight are recommended.

The activities are free with regular park admission, which is $7 for those 13 and older.

For more information about Isle du Bois events, call 940-686-2148. For information about Johnson Branch events, call 940-637-2294.


Denton Herb Society slates program on soaps

Members of the Denton Herb Society will host guest speaker Heather V. Taylor from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday at the North Branch Library, 3020 N. Locust St.

Taylor will give a presentation on how to make herbal soaps and salves.

The society is an educational and informational organization whose mission is to teach, learn and share information about herbs. For more information, visit


Water district accepting applications for position

The Upper Trinity Regional Water District is accepting applications for an opening on the nine-member governing body for the Upper Trinity Conservation Trust.

The trust is a charitable conservancy whose mission is to help protect watersheds for water supply sources.

The appointment as an unpaid trustee would be for a three-year term. The trust works with landowners, communities and developers to protect water resources and lands along and near waterways.

Applicants should have a passion for protection and preservation of water and land resources within watersheds and a willingness to help raise funds in support of the trust.

Application forms are available at or at the Upper Trinity Regional Water District offices at 900 N. Kealy St. in Lewisville. For more information, contact Jason Pierce by e-mail at or 972-219-1228.


Justin to extend softball signups until Monday

The city of Justin announced this week that coed softball signups have been extended until Monday.

Those interested can visit and the Parks and Recreation Department, fill out the form and bring it to the city offices at 415 N. College Ave.

Entry forms can be sent by fax to 940-648-1502.

For more information, e-mail Jon Wells at


Lewisville Community Theatre to present musical

The Greater Lewisville Community Theatre is wrapping up its 30th season in rock-opera fashion with the legendary musical The Who’s Tommy. The show runs weekends through July 21, with performances at 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 3 p.m. Sundays.

Tickets are $19 for adults and $16 for ages 65 and older and 18 and younger. Call 972-221-7469 for reservations.

The theater is at 160 W. Main St. in Old Town Lewisville. The entrance and parking are in the rear off Elm Street. For more information, visit


Denton Community Theatre to offer programs

The Denton Community Theatre will present “Dig into Reading!” this month at the Denton Public Library’s three locations.

Described in a press release as a high-energy, highly interactive mix of stories, songs and poems, the program follows the theme of this year’s national summer reading program.

The program will be offered at the following dates and times: 3 p.m. Tuesday at Emily Fowler Central Library, 502 Oakland St.; 4 p.m. Tuesday, July 16, at the South Branch Library, 3228 Teasley Lane; and 3 p.m. Thursday, July 18, at the North Branch Library, 3020 N. Locust St.

The Denton Community Theatre presentation is funded by the Texas Commission on the Arts. It is designed for children ages 3 and older.

Seating is limited and free tickets will be available at the libraries starting an hour before each show on a first-come, first-served basis.

For more information, contact Dana Tucker, public services librarian, at 940-349-8715 or


Denton County Health Department plans classes

The Denton County Health Department will offer monthly American Heart Association Heartsaver cardiopulmonary resuscitation and automated external defibrillator classes starting later this month.

The classes are open to the public, and participants will learn the most recent, research-proven cardiopulmonary resuscitation and automated external defibrillator techniques for adults and children and cardiopulmonary resuscitation for infants.

The classes will be from 9 a.m. to noon on the third Wednesday of every month, starting July 17. To offset the cost of materials, the health department will charge $4 per person (cash only). Space is limited and participants must register to attend.

Upon successful completion of the course, including a skills test, students will receive a certification card valid for two years. To register, contact Julie Wright at 972-434-4715 or

LES COCKRELL is interested in your input for Out & About. Help share information about Denton County events and people by calling him at 940-566-6887. His e-mail address is