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Parks mark Public Lands Day Saturday

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POSTED: September 24, 2010 11:31 a.m.
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Civil War re-enactors fire a cannon at Fort McAllister near Richmond Hill.

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Visitors to Georgia’s 63 state parks, including historic Fort Morris in Liberty County, Fort McAllister in Bryan County and Fort King George in Darien, will receive free admission on Saturday, which is Public Lands Day. Daily parking at Georgia’s state parks and historic sites costs $5.
National Public Lands Day was established 16 years ago to encourage visits to public lands and educate citizens about their country’s natural resources and environmental issues.
“Last year we had well over 100 visitors show up,” Fort Morris site manager Arthur Edgar said.
Edgar said Revolutionary War musket and cannon firing demonstrations will be held from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday at Fort Morris. Families can picnic, explore nature trails and watch migratory birds fly on their way south, he said.
The site where the park now stands was once a Guale Indian village connected to the Spanish mission on St. Catherine’s Island. In colonial times, Gen. James Oglethorpe held the first Masonic meeting in the new British colony at Fort Morris. The fort also witnessed the American Revolution. In 1776, the Continental Congress decided to build a fort on the Medway River to protect Georgia’s middle coast from attack by the British navy. Fort Morris also played a part in the War of 1812, when it was called Fort Defiance.
The park is open from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Thursday through Saturday. Fort Morris is at 2559 Fort Morris Road in Midway.
For more information, call 884-5999, e-mail fortmorris@coastalnow.net or go to www.gastateparks.org.
 

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