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A & E

News updates from the Forest Preserve District of Will County

Worth resident Dick Thomas, who died in December, will be honored in 2019 by all three nature organizations where he worked as a volunteer: the Forest Preserve District of Will County, Orland Grassland Volunteers near Orland Park and Lake Katherine Nature Center and Botanic Gardens in Palos Heights.
Worth resident Dick Thomas, who died in December, will be honored in 2019 by all three nature organizations where he worked as a volunteer: the Forest Preserve District of Will County, Orland Grassland Volunteers near Orland Park and Lake Katherine Nature Center and Botanic Gardens in Palos Heights.

Monarch program highlights Will County’s milkweed hot spots

Learn about monarch butterflies, milkweed and pollinators each Sunday in August during the Forest Preserve District of Will County’s “Monarch Way Stations” program.

The free, all-ages program will identify milkweed hot spots that provide valuable habitat and nectar sources for monarchs.

Stop by from noon to 2 p.m. to learn about butterflies, milkweed and pollinators and search for monarch eggs and caterpillars in action.

Here are the dates and locations: Aug. 4, Hickory Creek Barrens Nature Preserve, New Lenox; Aug. 11, Hickory Creek Preserve – LaPorte Road Access, Mokena; Aug. 18, McKinley Woods – Kerry Sheridan Grove, Channahon; and Aug. 25, Isle a la Cache Museum, Romeoville.

'A good guy and a treasure'

Worth resident Dick Thomas, who spent 24 years volunteering for the Forest Preserve District before his death in December, will be honored this year by three nature organizations he assisted in both Cook and Will counties. Visit bit.ly/dickthomas.

Volunteers make a difference along Rock Run Rookery shoreline

Twenty-two hardy volunteers braved 40-degree temperatures and rainy weather to pick gobs of plastic debris from the shoreline of Rock Run Rookery Preserve in Joliet.

The group scoured the shoreline searching for man-made materials marring the beauty of the preserve during the Forest Preserve District’s fourth annual “River Shoreline Cleanup” program.

To learn more and to see a video of the cleanup effort, visit bit.ly/rookerycleanup.

Childhood spent outdoors serves as inspiration for Volunteer of the Year

Longtime Forest Preserve District volunteer Richard Wachenheim of Romeoville was honored as the volunteer of the year at the Forest Preserve's annual volunteer banquet.

For 28 years, Wachenheim has incorporated his love of the outdoors into his volunteer work with the District.

To learn more about Wachenheim, visit bit.ly/volunteerhonored.

Nature Foundation of Will County presents second 2019 check to Forest Preserve

The Nature Foundation of Will County presented the Forest Preserve with a $10,530 check on April 11 that will be used to fund the District’s nature education, arts and interpretation programs.

In January, the foundation donated $5,250 to the District. The total amount donated to the District should exceed $25,000 by the end of the year.

For more details, check out bit.ly/forestdonation.

Commuting on the Old Plank Road Trail is ‘good for the soul'

Greg Duffner of Frankfort never planned on being the dentist who bikes to work. But it happened anyway. In the past four years alone,

Duffner has racked up more than 19,000 miles on his bike commuting to work and riding in charity events around the country.

Read the details of his story at bit.ly/bikingdentist.

Upcoming fishing programs in Monee Township

A “Kids’ Fishing Derby" will be held July 27 at the Monee Reservoir. The annual fishing derby is for kids ages 5 to 15 and it costs $5 per person. Prizes will be awarded.

Check-in/registration will be 7 to 8 a.m.; fishing will be from 8 to 11 a.m.; awards will be from 11 a.m. to noon.

Register at ReconnectWithNature.org or call 708-534-8499. Walk-up registration will be accepted.

“Midnight Madness" will be from 7 p.m. to midnight Aug. 2 at the Monee Reservoir. Enjoy a nighttime fishing opportunity.

Bring a flashlight and bug repellent. Registration is not required for this free, all-ages program.

Scout program

“Into the Wild: Webelos Badge" will be held at 9 a.m., 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. on July 27, Isle a la Cache Museum in Romeoville. Explore, hike and watch wildlife.

This program fulfills the requirements for the Webelos Boy Scouts “Into the Wild” badge and is for age 10 to 11.

Register by Thursday, July 25, at ReconnectWithNature.org or call 815-886-1467.

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