Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center

Connect with the historic past of the Palos Hills at The Little Red Schoolhouse (LRSH). In 1886 the present building, originally located on the Black Oak Trail at old 99th Street, replaced a log cabin school.

 

Now hikers enjoy country lanes once used by its student. In 1932 the school house was moved to Camp Kiwanis by a local resident, using only one mule and log rollers. Classes continued there until 1948. In 1952 it was moved to its present site, and in 1955 reopened as a unique, new kind of school. In place of the three R’s, fascinating stories are told to children and grown-ups who visit here, stories about forest preserve plants and animals and the earth of which they live.

 

Fifty years ago Longjohn Slough was a wet prairie where farmers cut wild hay. Some farmers hauled hay to feed Chicago’s horses a round trip of about 10 hours! Old timers remember hunting rabbits in a hollow that is now Maple Lake, and one resident made a living just hunting and trapping. The land on which the schoolhouse now stands was a fruit orchard planted in 1906. Visitors in the spring still enjoy its pear, apple and plum blossoms.

 

In 2010 a new visitor center with additional live animals and exhibits, children’s activity room, and more joined the old school.
History of LRSH » LRSH on Facebook »

9800 Willow Springs Rd
Willow Springs, IL 60480
708-839-6897
 

Hours: March – October
Building 9 am – 5 pm, closed Fridays
Grounds 8 am – 5 pm
Hours: November – February
Building 9 am – 4 pm, closed Fridays
Grounds 8 am – 4 pm

Closed:
Thanksgiving, Christmas Day & New Year’s Day

February 2019

Sat, Feb 23 • 1:30 pm
Free

Snowshoe Hike

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs

March 2019

Sat, Mar 2 • 11 AM
Free

Nature Baby

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Sun, Mar 3 • 10 AM
Free

Yoga in the Woods

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Wed, Mar 6 • 12:30 pm
$20

Afternoons with Mother Nature

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
SeriesSat, Mar 9 • 10 AM
Free

R.I.P. Stewardship Workday

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Sun, Mar 10 • 1:30 pm
Free

Nature’s Choice

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
SeriesThu, Mar 14 • 10 AM
Free

S.E.N.I.O.R.S.

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Wed, Mar 20 • 12:30 pm
$20

Afternoons with Mother Nature

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Fri, Mar 22 • 6:30 pm
Free

Spring Equinox Night Hike

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
SeriesMon, Mar 25 • 10 AM
Free

Spring Breakout Adventure

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Sat, Mar 30 • 1:30 pm
Free

Nature Kitchen

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs

April 2019

Sat, Apr 6 • 1:30 pm
Free

Peek in a Pond

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Sun, Apr 7 • 10 AM
Free

Yoga in the Woods

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Wed, Apr 10 • 12:30 pm
$20

Afternoons with Mother Nature

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
SeriesThu, Apr 11 • 10 AM
Free

S.E.N.I.O.R.S.

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
SeriesSat, Apr 13 • 10 AM
Free

R.I.P. Stewardship Workday

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Sun, Apr 14 • 1:30 pm
Free

Nature’s Choice

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
SeriesFri, Apr 19 • 7:30 pm
Free

Friday Night Frogs

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
SeriesSat, Apr 20 • 1:30 pm
Free

Wild Child

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Wed, Apr 24 • 12:30 pm
$20

Afternoons with Mother Nature

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Bird The PreservesSat, Apr 27 • 7:30 am
Free

Morning Bird Walks

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Sat, Apr 27 • 7:30 pm
Free

Night Sky Programs

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs

May 2019

Sat, May 4 • 6 AM
Free

Big Sit

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Wed, May 8 • 12:30 pm
$20

Afternoons with Mother Nature

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
SeriesThu, May 9 • 10 AM
Free

S.E.N.I.O.R.S.

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Bird The PreservesSat, May 11 • 7:30 am
Free

Morning Bird Walks

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
SeriesSat, May 11 • 10 AM
Free

R.I.P. Stewardship Workday

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Sun, May 12 • 1:30 pm
Free

Spring Wildflower Hike

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Bird The PreservesSat, May 18 • 7:30 am
Free

Morning Bird Walks

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Sat, May 18 • 7:30 pm
Free

Night Sky Programs

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Sun, May 19 • 10 AM
Free

Yoga in the Woods

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Wed, May 22 • 12:30 pm
$20

Afternoons with Mother Nature

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
SeriesFri, May 24 • 8:15 pm
Free

Friday Night Frogs

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Sat, May 25 • 1 PM
Free

Spring Fungi Hike

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs

June 2019

Tue, Jun 11 - Thu, Jun 13 • 9:30 am
$25

Little Green Thumbs Nature Camp

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Tue, Jun 18 - Thu, Jun 20 • 10 AM
$25

Spittlebug Nature Camp

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs

July 2019

Tue, Jul 9 - Thu, Jul 11 • 9:30 am
$25

Young Naturalists Field Camp

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Wed, Jul 17 - Fri, Jul 19 • 9:30 am
$25

“Naturalist for a Day” Field Camp

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
Tue, Jul 23 - Thu, Jul 25 • 9:30 am
$25

Young Naturalists Field Camp

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, Willow Springs
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Visit two of the treasures of the Forest Preserves of Cook County