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Skip Navigation LinksDNREC : News : Scenic St. Jones Reserve holds Open House on Sat. Nov. 3; Includes Delaware Native Plant Society's Annual Plant Sale

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 Contact: Melanie Rapp, Public Affairs, 302-739-9902.

Scenic St. Jones Reserve holds Open House on Sat. Nov. 3
 Event along Delaware’s Bayshore includes Native Plant Society’s Annual Plant Sale

DOVER (Oct. 26, 20120) – Located east of Dover along the scenic Delaware Bayshore, the St. Jones Reserve invites the public to a free Open House from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 3. The Open House showcases the amazing creatures and natural beauty of the St. Jones estuary and features the Delaware Native Plant Society’s Native Plant Sale from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The St. Jones Reserve, a component of the Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve (DNERR), is located at 818 Kitts Hummock Road near Dover.

According to DNERR Education Coordinator, Jennifer Holmes, the Reserve will hold its fourth annual Open House, rain or shine. “We invite families to explore the woods and wetlands, connect with nature and enjoy autumn’s splendor at the Reserve,” said Holmes. “We are excited to debut a new video – The Price of Progress…The Promise of Protection – that highlights the history and importance of the St. Jones River to central Delaware. The public can view the video, exhibits and presentations and discover research projects currently underway by Delaware Coastal Program scientists.”

With activities planned for all ages, visitors at the Open House can:

- Tour the St. Jones Center for Estuarine Studies, a building dedicated to understanding Delaware’s coastal areas, including its research laboratory, exhibits and classrooms;

- Take part in kids activities with nature crafts;

- Experience the wonders of the Reserve by going on a self-guided walk;

- Enjoy the new St. Jones River video, The Price of Progress…The Promise of Protection at 11 a.m.;

- Discover what scientists are working on at the Reserve;

- Watch as real-time weather and water conditions are reported to the internet as part of the National Estuarine Research Reserve System Wide Monitoring Program;

- Explore the amazing creatures that live in our estuaries as seen in our estuarium; and,

-  Hear about the many ways that you can enjoy getting involved in protecting the Reserve.

For more information on the St. Jones Reserve Open House, contact Jennifer Holmes at 302-739-3436 or

On the grounds of the Reserve, the Delaware Native Plant Society will hold its Annual Plant Sale – a much anticipated event that offers beautiful native plants for sale for home landscapes. Native trees, shrubs, and perennial plants, including cardinal flower (Native Plant of the Year), pawpaw, blazing star, and other difficult-to-find plants, will be available to purchase at exceptionally low prices. For the best selection, buyers are encouraged to arrive early.

"The Delaware Native Plant Society and the St. Jones Reserve share the same goals of protecting and conserving our native plants, and this event is a wonderful opportunity for us to work together to promote stewardship,” said Eric Zuelke, Delaware Native Plant Society. “At the sale, we encourage the public to nominate their favorite native plant for recognition as Delaware’s Native Plant of the Year for 2012.”

Plants are grown in the Delaware Native Plant Society’s nursery from locally collected seed, have been donated by members, or have been rescued from sites scheduled for clearing and development. This is one of only a handful of sources for plants collected and grown in the Delmarva region. The sale is their only fundraising event; all proceeds go back into nursery operations. For more information, visit

Vol. 42, No. 420

This project is part of DNREC’s Bayshore Initiative, a landscape approach to restore and protect fish and wildlife habitat, increase volunteer participation in habitat stewardship projects, enhance low-impact outdoor recreation and ecotourism opportunities, and promote associated environmentally-compatible economic development. The Delaware Bayshore Initiative was recently recognized by the U.S. Dept. of the Interior as one of the country’s most promising ways to reconnect Americans to the natural world.

The Blackbird Creek Reserve and St. Jones Reserve are two components of the Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve (DNERR), a cooperative program between the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, Delaware Coastal Programs and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration since 1993. As one of 28 National Estuarine Research Reserves protecting over 1.3 million acres of coastal and estuarine habitat across the country, the DNERR serves as a place-based living laboratory and classroom to support local coastal research and long-term monitoring while advancing estuary literacy and generating meaningful experiences for all kinds of people interested in learning about, protecting and restoring the Delaware’s estuarine and coastal areas. For more information, visit Join us on Facebook!

Organized in 1998, the Delaware Native Plant Society, a non-profit organization, has a statewide membership and encourages the use of and works to preserve, conserve, restore, and propagate native plants and native plant communities in Delaware.

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