Art Hike For Tick Bite Awareness

A poster made by a child this year for the tick walk. Independent/Tick Wise Education

On Saturday, July 27, East End Tick & Mosquito Control and Tick Wise Education are hosting an Art Hike for Tick Bite Awareness at the South Fork Natural History Museum in Bridgehampton. Tick Wise Education teaches students in Suffolk County the importance of tick safety. Children were asked to create artwork on the lesson, which will be displayed on the back lawn of the museum from 10 AM to 2 PM.

“It’s always so fun to see the creations the kids have come up with and the excitement when the winners are chosen,” said Brian Kelly, owner of East End Tick & Mosquito Control, who said the hike is one of his company’s favorite events of the year. “It’s a great, family-friendly event and fun way to spend a summer afternoon. We’ll also have local experts sharing tick advice, so it’s informative for both the parents and children.”

Tick Wise Education president April Nill-Boitano said she couldn’t think of a more perfect location.

“The South Fork Natural History Museum and Nature Center is such a bucolic and picturesque place — it is the perfect environment for observing the natural surroundings found here on Long Island,” she said. “It also epitomizes the need for a program like Tick Wise Education. Although Long Island is naturally, beautifully inviting, it is no longer realistic to simply pack one’s hiking boots and water bottle to go exploring in the woods. There are certain procedures and safety measures that informed citizens should take before going out into natural environments on this island.”

Nill-Boitano said raising awareness should be part of the standard narrative when exploring nature. Like teaching children to properly care for their teeth, she said habits need to be instilled to ensure tick bite safety and prevention for adults and children. This includes nightly tick checks, spraying shoes and socks with Permethrin before going into the woods, wearing essential oils to repel bugs, and keeping a tick removal kit handy, and sticking pieces of duct tape on water bottles to trap ticks.

“In the wise and timeless words of Benjamin Franklin, ‘An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,’” Nill-Boitano said.

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