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Celebrate Local Public Lands with Party for the Preserves

Youth paint using natural materials.

Throughout Cook County, residents and visitors can enjoy nearly 70,000 acres of wild and wonderful in the Forest Preserves of Cook County. These public lands are available for numerous activities including hiking, biking, fishing and camping.

In honor of National Public Lands Day, the Forest Preserves will be hosting two weekend Party for the Preserves events on Saturdays, September 21 and 28, At Camp Bullfrog Lake and Deer Grove Forest Preserves.


Party for the Preserves: Camp Bullfrog Lake

Saturday, September 21 • 3-9 pm

Camp Bullfrog Lake
9600 Wolf Rd
Willow Springs, IL 60480 (view web map of Camp Bullfrog Lake)
312-636-9785

Join us for the kick-off to National Public Lands Week at Party for the Preserves. Activities will include canoeing with Wilderness Inquiry, bike clinics with REI, bike rides with CAMBr, stargazing with University of Chicago, nature play with Chicago Botanic Gardens, lawn games and art-making, beer samples from Imperial Oak Brewing, animal encounters with Sand Ridge Nature Center, guided hikes, Leave No Trace activities, live music, s’mores and more! Event is BYOB (glass is not permitted).


Party for the Preserves: Deer Grove-East

Saturday, September 28 • 2-9 pm

Deer Grove-East
W Dundee Rd, west of N Hicks Rd
Cook County, IL 60074 (view web map of Deer Grove-East)
(near Palatine)

Celebrate National Public Lands Day at the County’s first forest preserve! Join in on numerous activities including conducting restoration work, archery, biking, nature play, creative re-use hammock making, live music, watercolor painting and more. Attendees can also enjoy food and drinks throughout afternoon and evening. Click here for a full schedule.


CleanUp and Give Back to Nature

Party for the Preserves events are scheduled on National CleanUp Day (Saturday, Sept 21) and National Public Lands Day (Saturday, Sept 28). During Party for the Preserves: Camp Bullfrog Lake on September 21, attendees can join in a shoreline clean-up around Bullfrog Lake. During Party for the Preserves: Deer Grove on September 28, attendees can participate in restoration activities including seed collecting from 2 pm to 4 pm at nearby Camp Reinberg. The first 30 people to register and volunteer during these events will receive a ticket for free food at that day’s Party for the Preserves celebration.


Celebrate Public Lands by Planting Native Species in Your Home Garden

Looking for native perennials to plant this fall? We’re taking orders now through September 20 for a variety of beautiful native species. Orders must be picked up at Deer Grove-East during Party for the Preserves on Saturday, September 28. Questions? Contact Taylor Creek at nursery.service@appliedeco.com or call 608-897-8641 x. 1033. Click here to download the PDF order form.