There's no excuse not to get outside this weekend.
Just about everywhere we turn there's a fun outdoor event planned.
In fact, one of the biggest events of the summer will take place over the next few days. It's the perfect opportunity to spend some time near one of the region's most-inviting waterways.
The 13th annual Codorus Blast will kick off Friday afternoon along the shoreline of Lake Marburg. It runs through Sunday afternoon. For most York County residents, the popular festival is just a short drive to the county's western border.
While the Blast is not specifically hailed as an outdoor-themed event, there are plenty of events on the schedule for us nature lovers to enjoy. One of the most popular is the "DockDog" competition. Anybody who has ever hunted waterfowl with a serious retriever knows that the dogs can be extremely athletic.
The DockDog event is a way to find out who's the best. The dogs are tested to see how far they can jump, how high they can leap and how quickly they can retrieve. It's been a while since any of us sat in a duck blind, but this jaw-dropping event will help any avid waterfowl hunter shake off the hot-weather blues.
There will also be a kayak program available to folks of all ages at the lake's main launch. Participants can take a half-hour paddle along the shoreline with experienced kayak guides helping them with their technique and answering questions.
This year will also feature another popular geocaching event. If you're not familiar, think of the sport like modern-day treasure hunting. For the Blast event, a series of "treasures" will be placed throughout the area, with nothing more than a set of GPS coordinates given to participants. Treasure hunters must use these numbers to find the treasure and move on to the next clue. It's a great way to spend some time in and around the state park's woods and trails.
There's also a nature tent, pontoon boat rides, plus a family fishing event — where experts will be on hand to answer questions and share their tips for success.
The entire event is sponsored by a group known as The Friends of Codorus State Park. Their goal is to support the park's mission by introducing people to the park and by financially supporting its operation. The proceeds from this weekend's Blast will be given to the park. The money from past events has gone toward buying new picnic benches, a sound system and even improvements for the park's popular pool. This year's festivities will cost $5 per car.
For the sportsman looking for an event to take the entire family to this weekend, the Codorus Blast is it. Each day is packed with unique activities — and there are even concerts throughout the weekend and a top-notch fireworks display on Saturday night.
For more information, visit codorusblast.org.
Andy Snyder writes about the outdoors for The York Dispatch. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.