Back To Blog

Steep Rock Association Programs bring Nature to Life

The Steep Rock Association has unveiled their spring and summer programs for 2015. There is a wonderful selection of courses which highlight the customs of animals in nature, wildflowers, organic gardening and more. Here is a program that looks at the mysterious life of reptiles:

Riverside Reptiles

Saturday, March 28
1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Location: Max Theatre at Rumsey Hall School (201 Romford Rd, Washington Depot)
Audience: All Ages; all children must be accompanied by an adult

Back by popular demand, naturalist Brian Kleinman returns with his impressive collection of reptiles and amphibians. This interactive, “hands on” learning experience will introduce us to numerous examples of these two similar yet different groups of animals, and explain why the populations of many reptile and amphibian species are declining world-wide. Well-known for his engaging rapport with children, Kleinman allows his audience to get up close and personal with the wonderful world of lizards, toads, snakes and turtles. New to his collection of fascinating creatures is a baby alligator!

The Shepaug River Then and Now

Thursday, April 2
6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Location: Wykeham Room at The Gunn Memorial Library (5 Wykeham Rd, Washington)
Audience: Ages 12 and older; all children must be accompanied by an adult

The history of the town of Washington is centered along the Shepaug River. Meaning “Rocky River” in the Algonquin language, the Shepaug has provided the vital waters needed to sustain the town’s earliest farms and mill industries and has continually given nourishment to the varied wildlife that lives near or in its waters. Today, the Shepaug River provides Washingtonians with numerous recreational possibilities and is at the core of Steep Rock Association’s efforts to preserve critical habitat. Calling rivers “good allegories for the passage of time”, Curtis Read reprises and updates his “Shepaug Now and Then” presentation, originally given in 1998 to kick-off the “Celebration of the Shepaug” exhibition.

Organic Gardening with Winvian's Chef Eddy

Sunday, April 12
12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Location: Washington Montessori School (240 Litchfield Turnpike [Rte. 202], New Preston)
Audience: Ages 12 and older; all children must be accompanied by an adult

Judea Garden is proud to open its 2015 growing season with this rare opportunity to hear Winvian’s award winning executive chef Chris Eddy, “a crusader for adventurous cuisine”, talk about Winvian’s commitment to growing its own ingredients for the table. Chef Eddy is a well-known advocate of sustainable non-gmo (genetically modified organism) gardening practices that he applies to Winvian’s own three-quarter acre garden, planted with the herbs and vegetables used in his restaurant dishes.

An Evening Woodcock Walk

Saturday, April 18
7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Location: Macricostas Preserve (Christian Street)
Audience: Ages 12 and older; all children must be accompanied by an adult

The American woodcock, also known as the “timber doodle,” is a shy and elusive bird that spends most of its time hidden from view. In the early spring, however, the male woodcock leaves the safety of protective ground cover at dusk to perform a unique mating ritual that combines a distinct call and an aerial display that has been called, “one of the magical natural sights of spring time in the east.” The program will include a brief introductory overview of the life of the American woodcock, followed by a 1 – 1 ½ mile hike along the fields of Macricostas Preserve. Participants should wear weather-appropriate clothing, walking shoes and bring a flashlight.

The Natural History of Spring Wildflowers Lecture

Saturday, May 3
1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Location: Washington Montessori School (240 Litchfield Turnpike [Rte. 202], New Preston)
Audience: Ages 12 and older; all children must be accompanied by an adult

Steep Rock Association and the Washington Garden Club are pleased to welcome well-known wildflower author Carol Gracie to talk about the native wildflowers that brighten our woodlands in spring. More than just a delight for the eye and a lift for the winter-weary spirit, each wildflower plays an important role in nature by providing food for pollinators, which in turn help disperse the flower’s seeds. Join us as we learn about the fascinating life histories of some favorite spring wildflowers.

The Natural History of Spring Willdflowers Hike

Saturday, May 3
3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Location: Hidden Valley Preserve (Main Parking Lot, Bee Brook Rd)
Audience: Ages 12 and older; all children must be accompanied by an adult

As an accompaniment to her lecture (see above), wildflower expert Carol Gracie will lead a wildflower identification hike at Hidden Valley Preserve. Space is limited.

Things That Fly

Saturday, May 3
3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Location: Hidden Valley Preserve (Main Parking Lot, Bee Brook Rd)
Audience: Ages 12 and older; all children must be accompanied by an adult

As an accompaniment to her lecture (see above), wildflower expert Carol Gracie will lead a wildflower identification hike at Hidden Valley Preserve. Space is limited.

After the long winter, these programs offer the perfect opportunity to both enjoy and learn about nature!

To register for any of these amazing programs, click here.