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The mission of the PEBC
is to be a vehicle for understanding and appreciating the natural
wonders in our own backyards.



Summer 2015 Public Programs

Garden Barn Quilts

The Prairie Ecology Bus Center offers a variety of naturalist programs for the general public primarily in the summer and winter months. The programs change each season and current classes are listed below. All programs are located at Sparks Park, 935 North Hwy. 86 in Lakefield, unless otherwise noted.

To attend any of these programs, we ask that you pre-register at least two business days ahead of time, unless otherwise noted, so that we can be sure to have enough supplies for everyone. We may also need to inform you of any changes or updates. You can register by calling the PEBC at 507.662.5064 or email marilyn@ecologybus.org. Programs will cancel if minimum enrollment has not been met by the registration deadline. Please helpus ensure the sucvcess of tese programs by registering ahead of time.

Volunteers Wanted! Do you have a hobby or skill that you'd like to share with others? If so, contact the PEBC! We are looking for folks who'd be interested in leading a class either in winter or in the summer. Give us a call to share your ideas and we'll work with you to organize and schedule a class or even a tour. No teaching experience necessary - just a willingness to share a favorite hobby or craft.

See what we are offering at Sparks Park - and check back often for new listings or date changes!

 
Program Name
Program Details
Program Description
Nature Packs


"Birding Adventures"

"Geology Rocks!"

"Nocturnal"

"Outdoor Skills"


FREE!!

Check out one of PEBC's Nature Packs today for a weekend or for family vacation fun!! The Nature Packs are designed with families, youth groups, schools and home schools in mind. Each pack contains activities suitable for both individual explorations, as well as, groups. Packs can be checked out for up to two weeks at a time. You will be resopnsible for lost packs or broken equipment. For more information, call the PEBC at 507-662-5064.

Click here to view Nature Packs in detail!

GARDEN CAMP

 

Tuesdays - May thru October

8:00 - 10:00 a.m.

Fee: $115

Who: Youth Who Have Completed Grade 2 and Older

Garden Club will begin its 6th growing season this May! The PEBC invites young, budding gardeners who aren't afraid to get a little dirty, who like to be outside exploring bugs and birds and other intesting garden visitors, doing crafts, and of course, learn how to grow fabulous flowers, herbs and awesome veggies - and eat them, too! Camp takes place, Tuesdays 8-10 a.m., throughout the growing season starting inMay. For more information, call the PEBC at 507-662-5064.

Click here to view Garden Camp page

Blue Moon Hike

Friday, July 31

9:00 - 10:30 p.m.

FREE

Who: Open to Families

Have you ever heard the phrase "once in a blue moon?"  Come find out why tonight is THE night for a blue moon!  Have you ever wondered what wakes up as skies get dark? Join a PEBC naturalist to take a peek at what nature has to offer under the view of the pale moonlight.  Dress for the weather as we head out to experience the sounds and signs of Sparks Park's "night life!"

8th Annual Prairie Steak Fry

Monday, August 3

5:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Tickets Sold In Advance - call 662-5064. Full flyer coming soon!

Who: Everyone Welcome!

Join the PEBC as we celebrate 21 years of programming in 2015!  This fund-raiser/friend-raiser will highlight the PEBC’s history and growth through the years while enjoying a full steak dinner and lively auction activities throughout the evening.  Come celebrate with us!

Stealth & Survival at Sparks Park Daycamp

Thursday, August 6

8:30 a.m.- 3:30 p.m.

Fee: $20

Who: Open to Youth having completed grades 4-6

Walk like a fox, hear like a deer, and put on your eagle eyes! Move invisibly through the forest and practice your stealth mode. It takes an inventive mind to survive! Understand how nature works by honing your way-finding skills, shelter building, and plant identification. Pack a lunch and dress for the weather. We will be exploring all day!

Let's Get Dirty!

Saturday, August 8

8:30 - 10:00 a.m.

Fee: $5 per person/$15 Families of 3+

Who: Open to Families

No person should graduate from childhood without the experience of playing in the mud!  Getting dirty is sometimes one of the "costs" of making learning a fantastic experience!  This class not only encourages up close inspection of wet soil, we'll learn all about why dirt is so important as we dig holes, find worms, and search for animal tracks.  We might get a little dirty, too!

Fantastic Flyers

Tuesday, August 11

9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

Fee: $7/participant (Caregivers attend free)

Who: Open to 4-5 year olds

From feathers and skin to flapping and gliding--birds, bugs and even some mammals are rulers of the sky. We will explore the magic and mystery of flight. Bring a snack!  Perfect for the little ones who are able to be at Sparks Park without mom or dad. If not, guardians are more than welcome to accompany their child.

Wildlife Detectives

Thursday, August 13

6:00 - 8:00 p.m.

Fee: $5 per person/$15 Families of 3+

Who: Open to Families

Let's face it - animals don’t just walk up to us, introduce themselves, and tell us all about their lives!   Embark on a journey of discovery and learn the art of investigating.  Sharpen your observation skills as you learn tracking techniques. Decode secrets of the animal kingdom and learn to imitate adaptations for survival. Wear good walking shoes - we'll be exploring Sparks Park!

Prairie Winds Kite Fly

Saturday, September 12

10:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.

Fee: FREE

Who: Open to All Ages!

Located at Jackson Municipal Airport in Jackson, MN

New this year: The world's largest paradoil kite!!

Prairie Winds Kite festival showcases spectacular show kites and this year includes a 2200 square-foot parafoil kite making it's midwestern debut! Pro-kite flyers from seven states will bring out their GIANT show kites - Plus you can fly your own! Don't have one: No problem! Donovans Hobby Store of Sioux Falls will have kites available for sale! Plus there will be kite making for kids, bol races, kids candy drop, scavenger hunt, great new concessions and more!

Creatures of the Night Hike

Friday, October 30

8:00 - 9:30 p.m.

Fee: $5 per person

Who: Open to Families & Adults

Bring the kids for a fun-filled, fright-free Halloween exploration!Bundle up and rustle through the leaves on a guided hike in the cool night woods of Sparks Park. Families encounter friendly costumed creatures of the forest and hear about their nocturnal lives. Dress for the weather and walking.

Animal Super Powers

Wednesday, November 4

6:00 - 7:00 p.m.

Fee: $3/child (adults attend free with their kids)

Who: Youth in grades K-2/Families

Ka-Pow! Shazam! Bamf!  We’ll discover how different animals are super strong, super fast, and super smart - just like our favorite super heroes!

Star Party at Sparks

Friday, November 6

9:00 - 11:00 p.m.

Fee: FREE

Who: Families & Adults

The PEBC Star Party will begin with an introduction at Sparks Park in Lakefield by 30-year amateur astronomer, Kevin Hlavac, and Dr. Paul Seifert, a star party veteran.  Following the indoor presentation, we’ll head outside where a variety of telescopes will be set up to observe such astronomical objects as the Taurids Meteor Shower, the Pleiades cluster and the Andromeda Galaxy.  Come and observe with us!

Fairy Gardens

Saturday, November 7

9:00 - 10:30 a.m.

Fee: $18 members/$20 non-members

Who: Open to Families

Are you going through withdrawals from your summer garden? No worries--we've got an antidote! Bring a mini-garden into your home for the winter and enjoy a bit of green and whimsy! Fairies are shy and will disguise themselves as flowers when they are feeling a little mischievous. Fairies love to dance and play so if you build a garden for them you might catch a glimpse of them!  By using your imagination you can create a fairy garden with a PEBC naturalist that will add magic to your living space!

Nature's Hoarders

Saturday, November 21

9:00 - 10:00 a.m.

Fee: $3/child (adults attend free with their kids)

Who: Youth in grades K-2/Families

Scavenge, save, store! Unlike humans, animals can’t run to the supermarket to fulfill their basic needs. Take part in a journey around the great outdoors to unearth the ways animals adapt to ensure survival through winter.

 
 

 

You can download the full schedule and program descriptions here:

Download current August-November Program Schedule (word file)

 

 


Pre-registration is required for all programs a minimum of two business days prior to program unless otherwise noted. Programs will cancel if minimum enrollment has not been met by the registration deadline. Please help us ensure the success of these programs by registering ahead of time. Please call 507.662.5064 or send an email to: marilyn@ecologybus.org

Class fee is payable at the time of the program unless otherwise noted. To send pre-payments, please mail checks to PEBC, PO Box 429, Lakefield, MN 56150. Interested in becoming a member and receive program discounts? Membership information is available at the PEBC office or online.