The RSPB Big Wild Sleepout returns to the West Yorkshire reserve on 29-30 July
Wildlife explorers and keen campers are once again invited to join RSPB Fairburn Ings for the Big Wild Sleepout, a unique and wild camping experience - and this year will be bigger and better than ever, with some extra special guests.
On 29-30 July, RSPB staff and volunteers will be welcoming families to the nature reserve, near Castleford, to take part in a range of exciting exploration activities. And on Saturday afternoon, CBeebies favourite Twirlywoos will be dropping in for visits at intervals throughout the afternoon. Great BigHoo, Toodloo, Chickedy and Chick are four bird-like friends who have sailed from far away on their Big Red Boat to visit our world for lots of silly fun and surprises.
Twirlywoo fans will also be able to enjoy lots of online activities when they register for the Big Wild Sleepout. The Twirlywoos have partnered with the RSPB this year across a number of initiatives and exciting projects designed to encourage very young children to engage with the great outdoors.
Sally Granger, Visitor Experience Manager at Fairburn Ings, said: "We're really excited to have the Twirlywoos joining us this year. They're all about seeking out adventures and discovering new things, so they fit in really well with what we do here at the reserve. I'm sure there will be lots of children very excited to meet their favourite Twirlywoo.
"But it's not just for little ones, the Big Wild Sleepout is an exciting and unique opportunity to camp out on the reserve with your whole family and join us for a nocturnal adventure. We have loads of exciting activities plans for big kids - and even bigger kids."
As well as being able to meet the Twirlywoos, visitors will have the chance to do some pond dipping, clay modelling, moth trapping, bug hunting and den building. Later on, campers can get together round the campfire to toast marshmallows and join in the 'Fairburn campfire quiz'.
As night falls, there will also be guided evening nature walks around the reserve to discover the things that go squeak, hoot and bump in the night, and those staying up late can raise their eyes to the skies for a spot of stargazing.
The event will take place from 12 pm, Saturday 29 July until 12 pm, Sunday 30 July. The price for adults is £37.50 (members £30), for children £25 (members £20) and under 2's go free. Booking is essential For full details, and information on how to book, visit www.rspb.org.uk/fairburnings.
Debbie Walker, Twirlywoos Brand Manager said: "We're delighted to be collaborating once again with the RSPB and thrilled that Twirlywoos will be able to entertain and excite the littlest of adventurers during the Big Wild Sleepout. The Twirlywoos are naturally curious and inquisitive about the outside world so this activity is the perfect fit to encourage pre-schoolers to explore and connect with the world around them."
For the fifth year running, the RSPB is challenging families across the UK to spend a night in nature for the Big Wild Sleepout. Thousands of children and their families will be pitching their tents and rolling out their sleeping bags to get closer to nature and discover which night time creatures they have on their own doorstep by sleeping out in their gardens or outdoor spaces.
Paul Birmingham, the RSPB's Wild Sleepout Co-ordinator, said: "Night time provides an exciting wild world to explore. From bats, moths and minibeasts to late night singers and marvellous mammals. We're calling on families across the UK to go on a nocturnal adventure - get together, get wild and discover the amazing night life on their own doorstep."
The RSPB has lots of ideas and resources to help families create their very own wild night, whether taking part in a full sleepout or just having an evening exploring a wild space before returning to home comforts. And by taking part in the Big Wild Sleepout, participants will be taking steps towards the Wild Challenge, the RSPB's new, free, year-round nature adventure for families. To start the Wild Challenge adventure visit www.rspb.org.uk/wildchallenge
Paul added: "With the amount of time children and families are spending outside in nature in decline, experiences like the Big Wild Sleepout are amazing opportunities to get out and discover the wildlife that surrounds us all. The chance to connect and experience the wonders of nature should be a part of every child's life and the RSPB Big Wild Sleepout is here to help every family start their own wild adventure.
For lots of fun ideas, activities and tips for a wild night out, visitwww.rspb.org.uk/sleepout.