I only went out for a walk and finally concluded to stay out till sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in. ~ John Muir, 1913

 

Featured Events
 

 

August 27,2016

Hummingbird

Festival

&

Pollination

Celebration

Click here for more information.

 

 
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Hummingbird Festival & Pollination Celebration
Saturday, August 27, 2016; 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Click Here for a list of activities

Plan to attend our 9th Annual Hummingbird Festival & Pollination Celebration!  Celebrate hummingbirds, bees, and butterflies – the vital pollinators for countless varieties of plant life in Funks Grove.  Enjoy entertainment, education, food, and fun at this FREE event!

What is pollination and why are pollinators important?  Join us to find out!  All ages are encouraged to learn about hummingbirds and other pollinators from experts during programs, guided hikes, and garden tours.  Browse an assortment of products available from Wild Birds Unlimited of Normal.  Visit with Wild Ones members to learn about native landscaping. Buzz on down to our Sap & Honey House to see a bee hive up-close, sample honey, and learn from members of the Illinois State University Beekeeping Club!  Children will especially enjoy watching puppet shows, making crafts, and overcoming obstacles in a life-sized game of migration.

We are excited to welcome back Vern Kleen of Springfield, Illinois, to the Festival again this year.  Vern is one of the few licensed hummingbird banders in the United States.  During the day he will demonstrate trapping, banding, and releasing hummingbirds.  Celebration participants will have the chance to “adopt” a bird to receive updates if it is recaptured.

This event is FREE. No registration is required.


The mission of Sugar Grove Nature Center is to provide a place where individuals
can
experience, study, and enjoy the environment and history of Funks Grove,
and as a result
be inspired to become responsible stewards of the environment. 

Admission is FREE!

Individuals of all ages enjoy the interpretive exhibits, sensory displays, and live animals.  A wildlife viewing area provides a cozy atmosphere for reading books or perusing field guides and invites visitors to enjoy birds and other wildlife up close. 

ALL GROUPS and Organized Gatherings of 10 or more MUST
schedule their visit prior to arrival.
Click here for more information on group visits.

Summer nature study classes for children ages 3 and up allow for education and understanding through hands-on experiences.  Field trips are offered for schools, preschools, homeschoolers, and other groups.  Guided walks, workshops, scout programs, family programs, and special events are conducted throughout the year.  All of our interpretive programs are designed to instill awareness and appreciation of the natural world.

Sugar Grove Nature Center is located in Funks Grove among over 1,000 acres of high quality natural area, most of which are protected as registered Illinois Land & Water Reserves or dedicated Illinois Nature Preserves.  Funks Grove is the largest remaining intact prairie grove in the state of Illinois and portions have been designated a National Natural Landmark by the U.S. Department of Interior.  Over seven miles of well maintained trails take visitors through prairie and woodland habitats.  A trail from the Nature Center leads to the Funks Grove Church, Cemetery, and Chapel of the Templed Trees.  Trails are open daily from dawn until dusk for foot traffic only.  Pets are welcome on most trails, but must be leashed and remain on the trail at all times.

Not far from the Nature Center, just across the covered bridge is Imagination Grove.  Imagination Grove is a special place where “kids can be kids,” designed to form a bond between children and nature that lasts a lifetime.  This nature exploration area invites kids of ALL ages to search for fossils and arrowheads, build a fort, tromp in the creek, climb a tree, pretend they are an early explorer, and so much more!

A picnic shelter, astronomy observatory, working blacksmith forge, variety of gardens and many other features help to make Sugar Grove Nature Center a beautiful and unique place.  Please visit us soon!

The Grounds, Trails, and Imagination Grove are Open Year-Round from Dawn until Dusk.