Monroe Lake, June 2018: Events, Programs, and Activities

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Memorial Day Weekend (PAYNETOWN SRA)

The campground is already fulled booked at Paynetown SRA for Memorial Day Weekend! Cancellations do happen, though, so if you’re still looking for a holiday campsite, keep an eye on the reservation website at

Our program schedule for Memorial Day Weekend is now available on our online calendar! Make sure you take a moment to check it out before the holiday weekend – and pick up a hard copy at the Campground Gate, Main Office, or Activity Center when you arrive at Paynetown.

June Daily Programs

Our seasonal interpretive staff just started work this week and is working hard to brainstorm daily program ideas for the June schedule! We will be posting those programs on our online calendar as they are finalized. Make sure you take a look at the calendar a few days before your visit to see what we’ll have going on… and check out the special events, workshops, and trips in June that are already posted on the calendar – or just keep scrolling down through this email newsletter!

Youth Fishing Derby, June 2 from 8 to 10 a.m. (PAYNETOWN SRA)

Cast a line and catch a fish! Kids, ages 16 and under, are invited to participate in this free fishing derby. Borrow our equipment or bring your own; bait will be provided. A prize drawing will be held at 10 a.m. for all participants! New and beginning anglers are welcome; instructors will be on hand to teach the basics and offer assistance. Please check in at the Paynetown SRA Fishing Pier (across from the swimming beach) by no later than 9:15 a.m. FREE!

Intro to Kayaking, June 3, June 10, June 24, July 15, July 29 (PAYNETOWN SRA)

If you love seeing wildlife, or just enjoy exploring, kayaking is for you! Kayaks let you reach backwater areas and quiet bays that aren’t otherwise accessible; it’s a wonderful way to experience Monroe Lake. This workshop is specifically designed for beginners with zero (or very little) paddling experience. We’ll teach you all the basic skills and provide supervised paddling time in a quiet water area to practice. Kayaks, paddles, and lifejackets are all provided. Cost is $10 person; each session is limited to 8 people (ages 8+).

Flora Field Days, June 5, July 3, Aug. 7

Want to work on your flora identification skills? Practice with a naturalist! Field day emphasis is on proper use and application of an ID key, which opens the door to identifying thousands of species. The naturalist will work with each attendee based on their prior experience. Sessions take place on the first Tuesday of each month from May through October, at different locations around Monroe Lake. FREE!

Nature Play Day: Play Passport Challenge! June 9 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (PAYNETOWN SRA)

Bring your willingness to play – and a digital camera! Pick up your Play Passport at the Activity Center beginning at 10 a.m., complete as many activities as you can before 4 p.m. (documenting each one with a photo), and then return to the Activity Center by 5 p.m. to claim a certificate and prize. FREE!

 Explore Monroe Paddling Trips, June 12, July 17, Aug. 14

Explore the quieter side of Monroe Lake during these guided paddling trips that journey through backwaters, wetlands, bays, and/or slow-moving streams. Trips highlight beautiful views, hidden wildlife, aquatic plants, and unique land features. Find your new favorite place to kayak! Cost is $10 per person; each trip is limited to 10 people (ages 16+). Bring your own kayak/canoe, or rent a kayak for an additional $20. All participants must have at least 2 hours of prior paddling experience OR have completed one of our Intro to Kayaking workshops.

Kayak Fishing Workshop, June 14 at 6 p.m. (PAYNETOWN SRA)

Kyle Robertson, with the Division of Fish & Wildlife, leads this special workshop to teach people how to enjoy fishing from a kayak! The workshop begins with shoreline fishing, to ensure that all participants are comfortable with fishing basics, including casting skills. Then we’ll climb into kayaks and work on translating those shoreline skills into on-the-water skills. Instructors will provide personal assistance to all participants, so that you’ll leave the workshop ready to go kayak fishing again on your own! FREE, but limited to 15 people (ages 18+). Participants can either bring their own kayak, or rent one for $10. All participants must have at least 2 hours of prior paddling experience OR have completed one of our Intro to Kayaking workshops.

Sign up at by June 11. *10 spots available
All participants must have a valid Indiana fishing license – and bring it with them to the workshop. Licenses can be purchased online at; the price for Indiana residents is $9 for a one-day license or $17 for an annual license.

The Faerie Gathering, June 23 from 3 to 5:30 p.m. (PAYNETOWN SRA)

Our annual Faerie Gathering returns once again! We’re adopting a slightly different format for the event this year… all faerie crafts and activities will run consecutively from 3 to 5 p.m. in the area around the Activity Center, and then we’ll wrap up the event with a faerie costume contest at 5 p.m.! This event isn’t just for children — we welcome adults too 🙂 The majority of activities are free; some crafts may have a small fee.

Craig Brenner presents Music in Indiana State Parks, June 30 at 8 p.m. (PAYNETOWN SRA)

Craig Brenner will perform music and invite the young – and young at heart – to join him in exploring the jazzy side of blues, boogie woogie and other piano styles, focusing on Indiana composers and musicians. Attendees will be invited to play along on some tunes, using percussion instruments Craig will provide. The concert takes place at the Activity Center Amphitheater (next to the beach). Some bench seating is available; you may want to bring your own chairs. FREE!


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