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

Maple Sirup Experience Programs

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Upcoming Programs for Kids

Unless otherwise specified, programs require advanced registration and payment. Space is limited. Classes could be cancelled if minimum enrollment is not met by the registration deadline. Please contact us for availability after the registration deadline has passed. 

To Register for a program, please click the program title!

Family Nature Exploration Day
Saturdays, April 1, May 6, & June 3; 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.
Bring your family out at any time throughout the day.  Create a fun make-and-take craft, take a guided hike at 11:00 a.m., and don’t miss the feeding of the turtles, snakes, and other critters at 1:00 p.m. 
Free.  No registration required.

Tiny Melodies Gone Wild

Most exciting for children birth to age 4, but all ages are welcome with an adult chaperone.
Fridays, April 7, May 5, & June 2; 9:30-10:30 a.m.
Tiny Melodies: Gone Wild, is an interactive Family Music Making Experience!  Children AND their caregivers will join Meryl Brown, Board Certified Music Therapist, in a variety of music-making opportunities including, but not limited to, instrument play, singing, movement and storytelling.  For more information on this program and others like it, visit developingmelodies.com.
Fee per class: $10/child members; $15/child non-members with an adult chaperone. 
Registration and payment required one week prior to the program.

Homeschool: Four Weeks on the Forest Floor
Ages 9-16 Tuesdays, April 18-May 9 (4 sessions); 2:00-4:00 p.m.
Students will study the progression of wildflowers over a 4 week period by surveying, drawing, and writing about them.  We will incorporate aspects of nature journaling, biology, math, and art in this exciting, innovative class. 
Fee for series: $32/members; $40/non-members. 
Registration and prepayment required by April 11.

Little Wonders

Ages 3-5 (with an adult chaperone)
Wednesdays, 10:00-11:30 a.m. or 1:00-2:30 p.m.
April 19:  Forest Flowers Afternoon Class Canceled
May 17: Fabulous Fungi Classes Canceled
June 21: Rowdy Raccoons
Discover the wonders of nature in these hands-on, interactive classes.  A snack will accompany story time and a fun craft will be created.
Fee: $5/child members, $8/child non-members with an adult chaperone. 
Registration and payment required by the Sunday before the program.

Girl Scouts: Tracks, Scat, and a Hiking Badge

Saturday, May 13; 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Brownies can earn their Hiker Badge while enjoying the great outdoors.  Discover evidence of seen and unseen animals as you hike the trails! 
Fee: $8/scout.  Snack included. 
Registration required through the Girl Scouts of Central Illinois website, getyourgirlpower.com

Boy Scout Bird Study Merit Badge
Saturday, April 29; 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.
This program is for Boy Scouts and leaders ONLY. No non-scouts or siblings please.
By participating in this program, scouts will complete all of the necessary objectives to earn their Bird Study Merit Badge and go home amateur ornithologists. Participants will learn the importance of bird study, how to identify birds by sight and sound, use binoculars and field guides, and how to attract birds to their yard. Please brin g binoculars and a bird field guide if you have them. If not, we have both to loan. A snack and project supplies and resources are included in the price. Scouts are responsible for obtaining the badge. Open to troops and individual scouts. Space is limited.
Fee: $15/scout, $5/leader.
Registration and payment required by April 15

The Art of Animals at Miller Park Zoo
Ages: 10-18
Monday, June 5:  Mammals; 9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.
Monday, August 7: Invertebrates; 9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.
Science meets art in this unique collaboration by Miller Park Zoo and Sugar Grove Nature Center.  Participants will meet some animals and study their physical characteristics, then use this information in sketching a few subjects. All art material will be provided, please bring a lunch.
Fee: $20 per session/member; $25 per session/non-member (Nature Center or Zoo). 
Registration and prepayment required.  Class will take place at Miller Park Zoo.

Nature Exploration Club CLASS IS FULL
Ages 6-12
Tuesdays, June 13-July 25 (6 sessions, no class on July 4); 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.
Discovery and exploration will be emphasized in this exciting program. Along with environmental themes, show-and-tell, and projects, participants will enjoy plenty of unstructured time in nature.
Fee for series: $100/members, $125/non-members.
Registration and prepayment required by June 6.

Nature Connections CANCELED
Ages 10-16
Thursdays, June 22-July 27 (6 sessions); 12:30-3:30 p.m.

This new program takes nature journaling and gives it a twist!  Make a connection with the natural world by documenting the growth of animals and plants, and the progression of natural areas such as the prairie over a 6-week period.  We’ll hone our powers of observation utilizing art, photography, writing, math, and more!  Potential subjects include crayfish, praying mantises, plants, and various items going through the process of decomposition.  See how they change from the first week to the last.
Fee for series: $50/members, $65/non-members.
Registration and prepayment required by June 6.

Creek Stomp

Ages 6-8; Tuesday, August 1; 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.
Ages 9-12; Wednesday, August 2; 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m
Kids will love getting wet and muddy as they explore the banks and depths of a nearby creek!  Learn about some of the creatures we might encounter, then head out to creek to see what we can find!
Fee: $25/child members, $30/child non-members.  Please bring a lunch. 
Registration and prepayment required by July 25.