McHenry County groups to host Latino Conservation Week July 18-26
Through a collaborative effort of "Conversacion de Conservacion," several McHenry County environmental groups will host conservation outings and a special EnviroZOOM on diversity in conservation for Latino Conservation Week July 18-26.
The Environmental Defenders of McHenry County, The Land Conservancy, McHenry County Conservation District, Friends of Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge, and Hispanic Connections Woodstock formed "Conversacion de Conservacion" to reach out to the Latino and Hispanic communities in McHenry County.
Latino Conservation Week is a national effort since 2014 for the purpose of "Harnessing the Latino Passion for the Outdoors," "Emphasizing the Latino Role in Conservation," and "Improving the Lives for this Generation and the Next."
As part of this special week, there will be several simultaneous events around McHenry County from which to choose on Sunday, July 19 from 2 to 4 p.m.
Each conservation organization listed above will hold an outdoor educational outing to an area that they manage, restore and/or own. Due to COVID-19, there will be a limit to how many people can participate and reservations will be necessary.
• The Environmental Defenders will hold its event in Woodstock at 2222 S. Dean St. At the Defenders' property, participants will follow the trails to explore the area and even venture into MCCD's Kishwaukee headwaters site. They will be looking for birds that visit the site in the summer and prairie flowers blooming in July. Learn how this site came to be preserved through a rather amazing coalition as well as future plans for the site. Bring binoculars if you have them and wear long pants and closed-toe shoes. Sign up by emailing email@example.com. Visit www.mcdef.org.
• The Land Conservancy will hold two outings, one at Gateway Nature Park in Harvard and the other at Wolf Oak Woods in Woodstock. Gateway Nature Park, off Heritage Lane, features a mowed trail, bridges across Rush Creek, wetland habitat, several groves of oak trees and the oldest resident in the county, a 400-year-old oak tree. Wolf Oak Woods Preserve, 9100 Route 120, is where you can get up close and personal with the most famous oak tree in the area! The rustic trail goes through oak woods, past a wetland and over a creek. Sign up by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit www.conservemc.org.
• Friends of Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge would like to invite Latino families on a self-guided tour of the first site in the new Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge, the Turner Tract in Genoa City, Wisconsin, just 3.25 miles north of Richmond, Illinois. The self-guided tour will open on Sunday, July 19, as part of Latino Conservation Week. The tour will remain open to families through July 26. The Turner Tract is a beautiful parcel which features mature oak woodland, restored prairies and wetlands. The self-guided tour will take you on a 0.6-mile looped trail along a restored tallgrass prairie and through a very pretty oak woodland. This is a self-guided tour and no registration is necessary. If you do go on the tour, the Friends would appreciate a quick note on what you thought of the tour. Drop Pete Jackson a line at email@example.com. Visit www.hackmatacknwr.org.
On Wednesday, July 22, at 4 p.m., there will be a special EnviroZOOM on diversity in conservation with Jen Walling, executive director of the Illinois Environmental Council. For details, visit mcdef.org/earth-day-virtual-events.
In addition, the McHenry County Conservation District's Roving Naturalist programs will be held during Latino Conservation Week with Spanish-language translators available during each program. Roving Naturalists travel to different district sites to help you learn more about site amenities and local plants and animals. Join them on Saturday, July 18, from 10 a.m. to noon at Elizabeth Lake Nature Preserve in Richmond; Tuesday, July 21, from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. at The Hollows in Crystal Lake; Thursday, July 23, from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. at Harrison Benwell in Wonder Lake; and Saturday, July 25, from 10 a.m. to noon at Lyons Prairie and Marsh in Cary.
Registration is not required for these free programs.