Oscar Scherer State Park
Open: Open all year
About: A large acreage of scrubby flatwoods makes this park one of the best places to see Florida scrub-jays, a threatened species found only in Florida. The park protects scrubby and pine flatwoods that were once widespread throughout Sarasota County. Fifteen miles of trails through these beautiful natural areas provide opportunities for hiking, bicycling, and wildlife viewing. Canoeists and kayakers can paddle along South Creek, a blackwater stream that flows to the Gulf of Mexico. Canoe and kayak rentals are available, but motorized boats are not permitted in the park boundaries. Freshwater and saltwater fishing are available along the creek. Anglers can fish along the shores of Lake Osprey, which is also the park´s swimming destination. Picnic areas along South Creek are equipped with grills; pavilions can be reserved for a fee. The park has full-facility campsites and a youth/group campground. The park nature center has exhibits and videos about the park´s natural communities. Located on U.S. 41, two miles south of Osprey.
New Audio Tour Feature: A new Mobile Phone Audio Tour Spotlights Local Watersheds. Easily accessed from any cell phone, the Watershed Mobile Phone Audio Tour is the first of its kind in Sarasota County. By dialing (941) 926-6813, you can hear up to 15 different educational messages about watersheds (Oscar Scherer is #9.) While you can listen to a message from anywhere, visiting the sites listed on the menu provides an up-close and personal experience.
Oscar Scherer State Park offers fully-equipped campsites for tent or RV camping with electric and water hook-ups. The picnic tables and grills provide a kitchen away from home. The clean, accessible restrooms have hot showers and laundry facilities. Fifteen miles of trails provide solitude, beauty, challenge and a healthy adventure for everyone.
There are seven ADA accessible sites, with aprons for parking and concrete slabs for grill and table.
Maximum RV length = 36 ft.
Reservations: Reservations may be made up to 11 months in advance through ReserveAmerica.
The primitive group camping area can accommodate up to 50 people. One chaperone is required per 10 youths. Amenities include a bathroom and shower, a pavilion with picnic tables, a cold water sink, a stone barbecue pit and a large campfire circle with bench seating. Electricity is not available. Reservations can be made up to 60 days in advance for organized youth groups and up to 30 days in advance for adult groups. Call the park at (941) 483-5956 for reservations.
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