Top 5 Things to Do in the Preserves This Week Sept. 8, 2017

1. Got milk? Explore Dairy Day. Explore life on a dairy farm in the early 1900s at St. James Farm Dairy Day on Saturday, Sept. 9 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at St. James Farm in Warrenville. Participate in a dairy-themed scavenger hunt, explore a hay maze, try milking Maggie the Milking Cow, see a live cow and win delicious ice cream. The all-ages event is free, and registration is not required. Questions? Call 630-580-7025.

2. Take a sunset kayak ride. Look for wildlife on a calm, guided kayak tour at Paddling: Kayaking at Sunset on Saturday, Sept. 9 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Herrick Lake in Wheaton. End the evening with s’mores by a fire. Equipment is provided. The program costs $25 per person and is for ages 18 and up. Register online or at 630-850-8110.

3. Get fit in nature. Enjoy the wonders of the preserves and get some healthy exercise on a brisk Forest Fitness Walk on Monday, Sept. 11 from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. at Oldfield Oaks in Darien, or on Wednesday, Sept. 13 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at Fullersburg Woods in Oak Brook. The walks are part of our ongoing Forest Fitness Walk series, which is designed to encourage exercise in nature. Did you know that walking on a trail for 30 minutes burns 102 calories? Each walk costs $4 in advance or $6 at the walk. Register online or at 630-850-8110.

4. Be a Junior Ranger. Explore nature and work on leadership, navigation, first aid, geocaching and other skills rangers use at the five-week Be a Junior Ranger! Program starting Tuesday, Sept. 12 at Churchill Woods in Glen Ellyn. There are three meetings at the shelter at Churchill Woods, one at Willowbrook Wildlife Center in Glen Ellyn and one at Hidden Lake in Downers Grove. The program for kids ages 6 – 8 runs from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. and the program for kids ages 9 – 12 runs from 6 to 7 p.m. Cost is $45 per person. Register online or at 630-933-7248.

5. Discover the history of Camp McDowell. Hear about McDowell Grove’s Depression-era Civilian Conservation Corps camp at Lectures at Mayslake: Rediscovering Camp McDowell on Friday, Sept. 15 from 10 to 11 a.m. at Mayslake Peabody Estate in Oak Brook. Find out about the secret WWII communications school for the Office of Strategic Services, the precursor of the CIA, that trained at Camp McDowell. The free program is for ages 12 and up (under 18 with an adult). Register online or at 630-206-9566.

Other notables:
Tractor-Drawn Hayrides Sept. 10 and Sept. 13
FullersBird Friday

Lend a hand by helping at a 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).  

Sept. 16                      Blackwell Native Plant Nursery 
Sept. 16 Springbrook Prairie 
Sept. 22 Blackwell Native Plant Nursery 
Sept. 22 Danada 
Sept. 23 Springbrook Prairie 
Sept. 24 Springbrook Prairie 

More volunteer opportunities  

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