Still recovering from 2020? If you’re like most people, the stress of the pandemic, working from home and e-learning has taken its toll.
Whether your stress level is tangible or intangible as a generalized feeling of unease, spending a few minutes in nature will help you reclaim your center.
Studies show that simply viewing photos of nature scenes has a measurable impact on stress: reducing anxiety, lowering blood pressure and decreasing muscle tension.
Nature even helps with physical pain. In fact, one study followed patients after surgery. Half had a view of a tree outside their hospital rooms and half viewed a wall from their hospital bed. The patients viewing the tree had fewer negative side effects, requested less pain medication and left the hospital sooner than the patients who could only see a wall.
Lucky for us, nature works in simple ways. Take a walk or sit outside and you will feel nature’s benefits. When you allow yourself to experience the abundant smells, colors and sounds of nature, you leave the experience feeling better. It’s that simple!
Spending time outside — even five minutes — is good for you. DuPage forest preserves offer 26,000 acres and 145 miles of trails for you to explore.
Sitting in a natural area for just five minutes can make you feel more energetic and less stressed or depressed. It’s a simple prescription that addictive in a good way. The better you feel, the more your brain will want you to get back out there again and again.
We’ve even got programs to help motivate you to get outside and de-stress. Sign up for one, or two or three!
The scents, sounds and surrounds seem to interact on a molecular level with people, changing blood pressure levels, raising beneficial cell activity, and improving mental health. So join us for one or for all! We’d love to experience the healing benefits of nature with you!
Fresh Air Friday
Enjoy a relaxing lunch hour of mindful walking and immersive nature-based ways to tune in to the present. Ages 18 and up. $5 per person. Register online or at 630-933-7248.
|July 1||Noon – 1 p.m.||St. James Farm|
|Aug. 5||Noon – 1 p.m.||St. James Farm|
|Sept. 2||Noon – 1 p.m.||St. James Farm|
Meet a plant expert for a leisurely walk to enjoy the blooms of summer. You’ll learn about native flowers, how to identify them, and which varieties you can grow at home. Ages 18 and up. $5 per person. Register online or at 630-933-7248.
|July 6 & 9||10 – 11 a.m.||Fullersburg Woods|
|Aug. 3 & 6||10 – 11 a.m.||Fullersburg Woods|
|Sept. 7 & 10||10 – 11 a.m.||Fullersburg Woods|
Moonlight Moth Walk
Join us during National Moth Week for an evening walk through the woods to learn about DuPage moths and other nocturnal insects. Ages 12 and up; under 18 with an adult. $10 per person. Register online or at 630-933-7248.
|July 29||9 – 10:30 p.m.||Blackwell|
Summer Prairie Walk
Stretch your legs, get some fresh air, and appreciate the colorful late-summer blooms of the prairie on a leisurely 1- to 2-mile guided walk. Learn how to identify common DuPage plants and which ones you can grow at home. Ages 12 and up; under 18 with an adult. $5 per person. Register online or at 630-933-7248.
|Aug. 1||10 – 11 a.m.||James "Pate" Philip State Park|
|Aug. 25||10 – 11 a.m.||Springbrook Prairie|
|Sept. 8||10 – 11 a.m.||Dunham|
Evening Forest Hike
Get some healthy exercise, and enjoy the wonders of a DuPage forest preserve on a guided 3- to 5-mile hike. Ages 18 and up. $5 per person. Register online or at 630-933-7248.
|Sept. 7||6:30 – 8 p.m.||McDowell Grove|
|Sept. 14||6:30 – 8 p.m.||Fullersburg Woods|
|Sept. 21||6:30 – 8 p.m.||Meacham Grove|
|Sept. 28||6:30 – 8 p.m.||James "Pate" Philip State Park|
Get some healthy exercise, and enjoy the wonders of a DuPage forest preserve on a quick-paced 3- to 5-mile guided hike. Ages 18 and up. $5 per person. Register online or at 630-933-7248.
|Sept. 12||8:30 – 10 a.m.||Blackwell|
|Sept. 19||8:30 – 10 a.m.||Churchill Woods|
|Sept. 26||8:30 – 10 a.m.||Springbrook|
Enjoy birding camaraderie, and learn ID tips and tricks while looking for migrating birds on a casual 2-mile guided walk. Ages 18 and up. $5 per person. Register online or at 630-933-7248.
|Sept. 16||7:30 – 9:30 a.m.||Springbrook Prairie|
|Sept. 23||7:30 – 9:30 a.m.||Pratt’s Wayne Woods|
|Sept. 30||7:30 – 9:30 a.m.||Oldfield Oaks|
Get Your Feet Wet
Join a walk in the newly restored Spring Brook, and learn the importance of streams and their inhabitants. Find out how the Forest Preserve District is restoring these valuable habitats as you search for crayfish, mussels, fish, and underwater insects. Ages 18 and up. $5 per person. Register online or at 630-933-7248.
|Sept. 17||10 – 11:30 a.m.||Blackwell|