A special summertime adventure for children | Sunday, July 8, 2018
The historic Kearney House in the Palisades Interstate Park in New Jersey will sponsor a “Sea Glass Hunt!” on Sunday morning, July 8. The riverfront adventure will be held “drizzle or shine,” with participants meeting at 11 AM by the entrance to the park’s Alpine Picnic Area & Boat Basin. There is a $5, cash-only parking fee charged at the area, but admission to the program is free and open to all, and advance registration is NOT required.
The focus of the morning will be “sea glass,” shards of glass that have been in the river long enough — in some cases, a century or more — that their sharp edges have been rounded smooth. Fragments of plates and pottery, even bricks, likewise rounded by time and tide, are also commonly found along the shore, as are shells from clams and oysters. Each piece of sea glass tells a story of days past, of steamboats and sloops and the river’s rich maritime history.
The program will start with a half-mile hike along the Palisades Shore Trail to a sandy cove where the tides deposit an unusual amount of sea glass. The trail is relatively easy but crosses stone stairways (strollers cannot be used on this trail, so that very young children may need to be carried). The group will spend about half an hour exploring the beach and then return to the start point by around 12:30.
Participants may wish to bring a sturdy container for their collected “treasure.”
Alpine Picnic Area & Boat Basin is accessible from Alpine Approach Road, which begins at the park’s Alpine entrance off U.S. Route 9W north of Closter Dock Road, or at PIP Exit 2 (click here for detailed directions). Participants should wear sturdy, closed-toe shoes, such as sneakers or hiking boots, and long-sleeved clothing is recommended for protection against poison ivy and ticks. Insect repellent and sunscreen are also recommended, and hikers should bring water to drink. If weather conditions seem questionable, participants can call 201-768-1360 and enter extension 108 on the morning of the program to confirm.