Did you know that the wild turkey was Ben Franklin’s nominee for our national bird? Once driven nearly to extinction in much of the United States, the wild turkey has returned. Come learn about this large bird that represents our first American holiday, Thanksgiving. We’ll make a turkey craft and take a walk to catch, with luck, a glimpse of this elusive bird.
Join Artist and Art Teacher Mary Ann McCurdle for one or more of these new family art classes this fall. Each class will begin with a short story, followed by a nature walk, and finish up with a related art project as we celebrate the beauty of the season.
Learn about spiders at Ipsiwch River Wildlife Sanctuary in Topsfield during this spooky time of year! All spiders spin silk, but not all make webs to catch their prey. How does a spider spin a web and not get caught in it? Come and find out the other ways these fascinating little animals use their magic threads.
Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary hosts a family nature photography workshop! Photography is a wonderful way to take your memories of the wildlife and landscapes of our sanctuary home. Introduce your family to the basics of digital nature photography and practice those skills while exploring some trails. At the end of the program each child will take home a print of their favorite photo!
Come be a part of the “Great American Eclipse.” A partial solar eclipse will be visible in Massachusetts on August 21, and we’ll celebrate by building solar-eclipse viewers to safely watch the event. We’ll also learn a little about astronomy and discover why eclipses happen. Our next solar eclipse won’t be visible until 2024, so don’t miss this chance!
In every kind of weather, we love to head outdoors to our spectacular local habitats, so join us for one, two, or more of these nature explorations! Each one will focus on the importance of a sense of place as we explore the ecology, sights, and sounds of our natural landscape. Wildlife, local and migrating birds, collecting techniques, and environmental awareness will be presented in a fun, energetic format that adults and children alike will enjoy.
Join us at Bradley Palmer State Park for a FREE program for all ages. Bob Metcalfe, of New England Discovery will take you on an adventure in tracking wild animals. Winter is an especially beautiful time to visit the diverse State Parks of Massachusetts. Ability to identify the tracks and sign of wildlife along the trail will add to your enjoyment of your favorite state lands.
To spark a sense of wonder, Rachel Carson said, every child needs an adult "who can share it, rediscovering with him [or her] the joy, excitement, and mystery of the world we live in." To this end, knowing facts about nature matters less than feeling a sense of beauty, admiration, excitement, and love, which can prompt a wish for knowledge later on and create an enduring legacy of meaning. Exploring nature, Carson reminds us, means being receptive to the surrounding world - "learning to use your eyes, ears, nostrils, and finger tips, opening up the disused channels of sensory impression."
Butterflies flutter among the wildflowers. A spider does acrobatics in the tall green grass. Tiny insects drink plant juices and blow bubbles to make their own foam homes. We'll use nets to sweep the meadow and take a closer look at the fascinating creatures hidden in the grassland jungle. After our safari, we'll have fun making our own bubbles.
Explore the Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary after hours and join us for a night of camping under the stars. Have an early dinner at home and then come with your family, your tent, and a dessert to share. This campout will focus on the Ipswich River. We will start the evening by setting up our tents at the top of the hill, and then head down to the river for an evening canoe trip.