INFOGRAPHIC: Winter’s Here!

Enjoy the preserves all season long, no matter what winter throws our way   As forecasters predict another polar vortex this winter (or not), we thought it was a fitting time to look at what it really took to keep the preserves open and safe during last year's record-setting winter.

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Opening Day For 2015 Picnic Permits is January 2

Be first in line by going online   Avoid the lines at our General Headquarters this year by reserving your favorite picnic grove online—from the comfort of your own home.   Online and in-person sales start at 8 am on Friday, January 2. The doors at our General Headquarters, 536 N. Harlem Ave., River Forest, IL 60305, will open at 7 am.  We look forward to serving you!   PRO TIP: Create your online account now (if you don’t already have one) to be ready to reserve your favorite picnic grove on Opening Day!

Celebrate the Solstice

In celebration of the upcoming winter solstice, the Forest Preserves is hosting three separate events centered around the year’s shortest day. The winter solstice, officially December 21 this year, has for millennia been a significant part of culture throughout the world. And away from the fire, out in the cold and darkness of the wild, coyotes have always hunted for voles under the snow while snakes, turtles, woodchucks and bees take an extended rest.  

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Get Your 2015 Wall Calendar

Our 2015 Wall Calendar is better than ever and will soon be available. This great stocking stuffer will inspire you all year long to explore our woods and prairies.

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Winter Workdays by the River

Beat cabin fever by becoming a Centennial Volunteer   This winter, join an inspiring movement of Centennial Volunteers helping to restore five special sites along the Chicago and Calumet Rivers. As a Centennial Volunteer, you’ll learn what it takes to restore diverse wildlife to our preserves and river systems. Volunteer days often include removing invasive plants, collecting native seeds, monitoring wildlife and more.

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Visit two of the treasures of the Forest Preserves of Cook County