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November Happenings at Thorn Creek Nature Center

Park Forest, IL—(ENEWSPF)—October 21, 2013. Thorn Creek Nature Center is nestled at the beginning of a three and half mile trail system that meanders through Thorn Creek Nature Preserve.    Housed in a small white wooden church building built in the mid-1860’s, the nature center houses several displays for both adults and children.    Stop in and learn about mammals, Illinois fossils, insects, birds and much more!   Talk with a naturalist and learn about the history of the building and how it became a nature center.  At nearly 1000 acres, Thorn Creek Nature Preserve is home to majestic oaks, hickory trees, white-tailed deer, owls, woodpeckers and much more.   Be sure to dress for the weather and wear sturdy shoes on your walk.   The nature center is open Friday-Sunday, noon to 4 p.m. and trails are open daily, dawn to dusk.   Stop out and visit us!  

The Story of the Landscape Hike is for all ages Saturday, November 2 from 1 to 3 p.m.  In 1957 May Theilgaard Watts, naturalist at the Morton Arboretum in Lisle, Illinois wrote the enchanting book Reading the Landscape. She wrote “there is good reading on the land…The records are written in the forests, in fencerows, in gardens, in tree rings.”  Join us on this fall hike to read the landscape of Thorn Creek Woods with John Yunger, professor of Ecology at Governors State University.  This program is free and registration is required.  For more information or to register for this program, please call Thorn Creek Nature Center, 247 Monee Road, Park Forest at 708-747-6320.                                                               

Join other nature lovers for the Friends of Thorn Creek Woods Meeting, Sunday, November 3 from 1 to 3 p.m.  We’ll find out what’s going on in the preserve and learn about ways to help.  Capital Fundraising for painting the nature center and building a new south bridge will be discussed.  New supporters, find out what makes Thorn Creek unique!  The meeting is open to the public.

Friends of Thorn Creek Woods is the citizen activist group responsible in very large part for preserving and securing the dedication of the Woods as an Illinois Nature Preserve.  Friends volunteers continue to provide support in so many ways-staff the nature center on weekends, trail work, displays, leading hikes, special events, cleaning, pruning, artwork, music, research, and on and on.    Friends is a voice for the Woods and preservation values, donates funds for equipment, supplies and sponsors an annual meeting, Garlic Fest and Earth Day. Members receive a quarterly newsletter.

Walk the autumn forest trails with Wednesday Morning Walkers, a free program, Wednesdays 7:30-9 a.m.  With nearly 1000 acres, Thorn Creek Nature Preserve is home to majestic oaks, hickory trees, white-tailed deer, owls, woodpeckers and much more.  Age 11 through adult are invited.  Registration is not required. 

Thorn Creek’s Junior Ecologists Club offering monthly fun-filled nature activities for young people age 9 to 12 has its next meeting Saturday, November 16 from noon to 3 p.m.   They will explore the woods, track seasonal changes and discover woodland plants and animals. Last month the group created a wall display on trees

Young people should be prepared to get muddy, dress for the weather, wear boots and long pants, and bring a water bottle and insect repellent. Junior Ecologists Club is a free program and registration is required by Thursday, September 26.

Join us for a nocturnal exploration of the woods on Full Moon Night Hike on Sunday, November 17 from 4 to 6 p.m. As you walk through the woods at night, your senses become heightened to what is happening around you.  Learn to discern the different sounds of the fall woods at night.   The hike is free and for all ages.  Registration required by Friday, November 15; call the nature center 708-747-6320.

Thorn Creek Nature Center and its Junior Ecologists Club is hosting its annual holiday food drive for the Rich Township Food Pantry.   Beginning now, donation items can be dropped off at the nature center during open hours, Friday-Sunday, noon-4 p.m.   Acceptable items are:  non-perishable food items (including boxed, canned and dry foods) especially cereals and peanut butter; personal care items for men and women, especially toothpaste, deodorants and razors; ziplock quart and gallon size bags; baby formula; and disposable diapers (adult and infant).    Items will be accepted through Saturday, December 14.  

“Woodland Carols” on Saturday, December 14 from noon to 2 p.m. at Thorn Creek Nature Center marks the end of the food drive.  Savor homemade soups while listening to a variety of holiday and seasonal music and carols sung by popular area performers.   Cost for program is $10 per person, or one bag of groceries per person.   Please call Thorn Creek Nature Center, 247 Monee Road, Park Forest at 708-747-6320, or email [email protected] to register for Woodland Carols or for information on the food drive.     Help a local family enjoy the December holidays by making a food donation today!


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