Laona Heights Sugar River Colored Sands Sugar River Two Rivers Ferguson Hartley Memorial Trask Bridge Four Lakes Pecatonica River Pecatonica Wetlands Crooked River Grove Creek Seward Bluffs Klehm Forest Preserve Severson Dells Fuller Memorial Cedar Cliff Indian Hill Hinchliff Memorial Kilbuck Bluffs Trailside Kishwaukee Gorge South Kishwaukee Gorge North Rockford Rotary Kishwaukee River Oak Ridge Blackhawk Springs Deer Run Espenscheid Memorial McKiski County Line Kieselburg Roland Olson Stone Bridge Clayton Andrews Ledges Hononegah J. Norman Jensen Millrace Isle Macktown Atwood Homestead Forest Preserve Headquarters

Nature Fiesta: A Bilingual Celebration of Nature, May 21

Nature Fiesta, Saturday, May 21 from 12:00 until 4:00, is Winnebago County’s only bilingual Nature Celebration. Part environmental education and part festival, Nature Fiesta is an afternoon when people from all over the community come together to enjoy learning about our local nature. Exhibits, displays, live animals, crafts, guided hikes and games will get visitors of all ages interested in our rivers, birds, butterflies, wildflowers and bees. Food avaialble for purchase from The Wild Rhubarb, or bring a picninc. Its sure to be a fun-filled afternoon!

Blackhawk Springs Forest Preserve will be set up with stations featuring exhibits and materials focused on Rivers, Monarchs, Wildflowers, Birds, Pollinators and Nature Art. A 55-gallon aquarium at the Rivers station will be filled with 20 species of local fish, mussels, crayfish, tadpoles and turtles. Live caterpillars, chrysalises, and butterflies will be on display at the Monarch station, as well as migration maps and samples of milkweed plants. Milkweed plants will be available for sale, along with other native plants and native plant educational materials distributed by Wild Ones volunteers at the Wild Flowers station. Live raptors and bird artifacts will be displayed by Hoo Haven and Sand Bluff Bird Observatory at the Birds station. The Pollinators station will feature information about local native bees and honey bees. Each station will distribute printed educational materials in both English and Spanish. Themed guided hikes, scheduled throughout the afternoon, leave from each station and naturalists paired with interpreters will lead groups into the forest preserve to get first-hand looks at the river, wildflowers and birds.

Nature Bingo, a treasure hunt and butterfly photo boards offer self-guided fun. Nature Fiesta is also the kick-off event for the popular Get Outside! program. Each family attending will receive a Get Outside! passport describing dozens of guided opportunities to explore hiking, paddling, camping, nature study and more throughout the summer. This festive and enlightening event is FREE and open to the public.  Nature Fiesta is generously supported by a grant from the Community Foundation of Northern Illinois.

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