With unseasonably warm weather speeding our rush toward spring and days becoming longer, our excitement for the official change of seasons grows. As we enjoy the seasonal change, be sure to visit the Forest Preserves and see plants starting to bloom and migrating birds beginning to appear throughout the County.
In this issue of the Forest Way, readers will learn how students ages 15-19 can become involved with Student Conservation Association and Friends of the Forest Preserves’ Chicago Conservation Leadership Corps program. This six-week service-learning experience trains participants to work as a team to perform ecological restoration and trail maintenance work in the Forest Preserves. Applications are being accepted through Friday, April 21.
Also in this issue is an article about Illinois’ newest Land and Water Reserve: Jens Jensen Grassland and Woods. This 220-acre parcel hosts myriad habitats including woods, grasslands and wetlands, and supports a variety of plants and wildlife. It’s located within the Jens Jensen Forest Preserve, adjacent to Deer Grove Forest Preserve. Plan a visit this season.
If you’re a film lover, be sure to head to Thatcher Woods Pavilion, 8030 Chicago Ave. in River Forest, at 11 a.m. on Saturday, March 11, for a One Earth Film Festival screening of the Emmy Award-winning documentary “Chicago’s True Nature: The Forest Preserves of Cook County.” After the screening, attendees can participate in a discussion about Cook County’s forests, as well as those of the world, and meet with some of Trailside Museum’s resident wildlife.
Finally, our spring schedule is now available and is filled with numerous fun and educational ways to experience the great outdoors with family and friends. Brochures can be picked up at Forest Preserves’ events or any of our six Nature Centers, or it can be downloaded from the FPCC events page at fpdcc.com/events.
See you in the Preserves!
Toni Preckwinkle, President