Top 5 Things to Do in the Preserves This Week Jan. 13, 2017

1. Drop a line in the ice. Take part in the only competitive ice-fishing tournament in DuPage County at the Hard Water Classic on Saturday, Jan. 14 from noon ‒ 3:30 p.m. on Silver Lake at Blackwell Forest Preserve in Warrenville. The top three catches of largemouth bass, bluegill, northern pike and crappie will receive gift cards of $125, $100 and $75 to local sporting goods stores. Register online or at 630-933-7248.

2. Bake a mouth-watering pie. Learn secrets you wish your grandmother had taught you at Pie-Baking Class on Saturday, Jan. 14 at Kline Creek Farm in West Chicago. Join either of two classes, from 9:30 ‒ 11:30 a.m. or 1:30 ‒ 3:30 p.m., where you will work in pairs and use fresh ingredients and historic recipes to finish with a mouth-watering confection. The program costs $40 per person and is for ages 12 and up; under 18 with an adult. Register online or at 630-876-5900.

3. Track animals in the preserves. Learn how to identify tracks and other signs animals leave behind and look for critters on a guided hike at Animal Tracking on Sunday, Jan. 15 from 9 ‒ 10:30 a.m. at Willowbrook Wildlife Center in Glen Ellyn. The program costs $3 per person and is for ages 6 and up; under 18 with an adult. Register online or at 630-942-6200.

4. Explore blizzards and beauty. Enjoy winter-themed works of art by talented Forest Preserve District staff and volunteers at the Blizzards and Beauty exhibit, which runs through Feb. 24 at Mayslake Peabody Estate in Oak Brook. The art exhibit features the work of District staff and volunteers and was featured in a review in the Chicago Tribune’s Doings Oak Brook News. It is open Monday ‒ Friday 9 a.m. ‒ 3 p.m. and Saturdays 9 a.m. ‒ 1 p.m. Questions? Call 630-206-9566.

5. Celebrate the squirrel! Join in a celebration of your friendly neighborhood squirrel and learn about these acrobatic rodents at Squirrel Appreciation Day on Saturday, Jan. 21 from 10 a.m. ‒ 4 p.m. at Willowbrook Wildlife Center in Glen Ellyn. Discover more about these critters with lots of “nutty” squirrel-related activities at this free all-ages program. Registration is not required. Questions? Call 630-942-6200.

Nurture nature by helping at one of these upcoming Volunteer Restoration Workdays. Help remove nonnative plants or spread seeds. For ages 8 and up; under 14 must be accompanied by an adult. Register at (630) 206-9630 at least five business days prior (10 days for groups of five or more). 

Jan. 21                    Springbrook Prairie 
Jan. 28 Churchill Woods 
 West Chicago Prairie 
Feb. 1 Springbrook Prairie 
Feb. 4 Springbrook Prairie 

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