MN Nature Activities Oct 3 –9

MN Nature brings the joys of fall in Minnesota to YOU with free weekly activities. Every so often activities have a fee* but they’re just so cool, we have to share those too. From casual hikes to social gatherings, family activities, and volunteer opportunities – stop by MN Nature frequently to stay up to date on the best activities in the great outdoors of Minnesota!

Helpful Info.
State Parks require a vehicle permit if you drive in. A day pass is $5 for one vehicle. When you buy a $5 one-day permit, you can trade it in before you leave the park for $5 off a year-round permit. You may purchase on site or online. Costs are:
• $25 Year-round vehicle permit
• $18 Additional year-round vehicle permit
• $12 Year-round special permit
• $20 Year-round motorcycle permit
• $5 One-day vehicle permit
• $3 One-day group permit
• Disabled veterans and active duty military personnel can get discounted or free vehicle permits.

10/03/2016

Apple Cidering: The Old Fashioned Way* $3–$7
5:00 pm to 7:00 pm See the process of fresh local apples being turned into apple cider. Learn about the ancient techniques that early settlers used to sweeten up their lives. Register by noon, October 3. More info
UMD Sports and Health Center 1216 Ordean Court (Duluth, MN 55812)

10/04/2016

Bird Watching Trek
8:00 -10:30 a.m. Join us for a bird walk and learn about the birds that visit the Refuge during their fall migration. With a variety of habitats at the different Refuge units you will want to explore them all. During the fall migration period the Refuge offers the opportunity to observe a mix of waterfowl, raptors, warblers and sparrows. All are stopping at the Refuge to rest and feed before they continue their southerly migration. Birders of all skill levels are welcome on these walks. Bring along your binoculars, favorite field guide, and dress appropriately for the weather.
Rapids Lake Education and Visitor Center (Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge)

Meeting Monarchs
9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Drop-in during regular Visitor Center hour to join refuge staff and Journey North in tracking the monarch migration this year. Begin your adventure at the front desk for equipment and some brief instruction. Then explore the surrounding prairie with net in hand. Afterward take in a monarch video or craft your own “make and take” monarch souvenir. Before you leave, create a monarch to add to our simulated Oyamel roosting tree.
Rapids Lake Education and Visitor Center –also Bloomington Education and Visitor Center (Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge)

10/05/2016

Meeting Monarchs
9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Drop-in during regular Visitor Center hour to join refuge staff and Journey North in tracking the monarch migration this year. Begin your adventure at the front desk for equipment and some brief instruction. Then explore the surrounding prairie with net in hand. Afterward take in a monarch video or craft your own “make and take” monarch souvenir. Before you leave, create a monarch to add to our simulated Oyamel roosting tree.
Rapids Lake Education and Visitor Center –also Bloomington Education and Visitor Center (Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge)

10/06/2016

Meeting Monarchs
9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Drop-in during regular Visitor Center hour to join refuge staff and Journey North in tracking the monarch migration this year. Begin your adventure at the front desk for equipment and some brief instruction. Then explore the surrounding prairie with net in hand. Afterward take in a monarch video or craft your own “make and take” monarch souvenir. Before you leave, create a monarch to add to our simulated Oyamel roosting tree.
Rapids Lake Education and Visitor Center –also Bloomington Education and Visitor Center (Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge)

Weaving and Wine Class: birch bark star* $27
6:00 pm Using strips of birch bark, and under the influence of a glass of wine, participants learn to weave a traditional Scandinavian-style star ornament. More info
Duluth MakerSpace 3001 W. Superior St. (Duluth, MN 55807)

Orienteering Fall Adventures Run* $20 /Also Volunteer Opportunities
7:00 pm-8:30pm These Autumn Adventure Run Series courses are an intermediate navigational challenge, often with a fun/unique challenge during the event. Courses: Long 4-5km and Short 3-4km. This year, the races are at Como Park in Saint Paul. The Adventure Runs start after sunset, so plan to bring a headlamp or flashlight. Click here for more info.
Como Park, Saint Paul, MN

10/07/2016

Meeting Monarchs
9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Drop-in during regular Visitor Center hour to join refuge staff and Journey North in tracking the monarch migration this year. Begin your adventure at the front desk for equipment and some brief instruction. Then explore the surrounding prairie with net in hand. Afterward take in a monarch video or craft your own “make and take” monarch souvenir. Before you leave, create a monarch to add to our simulated Oyamel roosting tree.
Rapids Lake Education and Visitor Center –also Bloomington Education and Visitor Center (Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge)

Bog Walk* $5–$10
2:00 pm to 5:00 pm Learn about bog mummies, discover carnivorous plants, taste wild cranberries and so much more. Register by noon, October 6. More info
UMD Sports and Health Center 1216 Ordean Court (Duluth, MN 55812)

Art in the Park Opening Event – Rita Corrigan
7 PM to 8:30 PM The October artist at Tettegouche State Park is Rita Corrigan.
She’ll be available for a meet and greet and a talk about her art.
Tettegouche State Park

10/08/2016

Big Woods Run and Prairie Walk
8 AM to 1 PM Join in on one of the most scenic runs in Big Woods State Park during fall color. Enjoy the beautiful wooded scenery while being challenged on aggressive hills during the half-marathon. The 10K and 5K will enjoy fairly flat wood trail course. New this year for kids and adults is a Prairie Walk. Included is a t-shirt, lunch and other goodies. For registration and more information
Nerstrand-Big Woods State Park

Women’s Fall Color Walk
9 AM to 12 PM Enjoy the fall colors along Brown’s Creek State Trail. We will start at the trail head in Stillwater near the old Depot and try to walk to Stonebridge Rd.
Stillwater — Parking area just south of the former Zephyr Depot and across from the Warden’s house.

5K Wild River Otter Trotter Run/Walk
10 AM Join us for a morning of fall color and family fun at our fifth annual 5K run/walk. Awards will be given to the top finishers. Course will take you on both paved and unpaved surfaces. All proceeds go to the Friends of Wild River to help support park programs and improvements. Registration is available day of the race. More information
8:30-9:45 a.m. Registration at the Picnic Shelter
10 a.m. Race begins ? Starting line at Picnic Area
Wild River State Park

Bayfield Apple Festival 2016
10:00 am to 5:00 pm There will be over 60 orchard and food booths, nearly 100 arts and crafts booths, a kids carnival with games and rides, and more at the 55th annual Bayfield Apple Festival. Apple pies, tarts, tortes, dumplings, caramel apples and ciders galore will fill the streets of Bayfield in a celebration of the autumn harvest and Bayfield’s agricultural heritage. Other highlights include: Fine art exhibitors on South Second Street, featuring pottery, paintings, glassworks, photography, wood crafts and fiber arts.
More info (https://www.perfectduluthday.com/the-event/134936-2016-10-08/2016-10-08/)

Fall Colors Historic Tour of the Whitewater Valley
10 AM to 12 PM Come enjoy the beauty of the fall colors while learning about the history of the scenic Whitewater River Valley. After a brief presentation at the Whitewater Valley Visitor Center at Whitewater State Park, we’ll caravan in our own vehicles to various historic locations in the valley. Bring your cameras!
Whitewater State Park

Interpretive Nature Walk
10 AM to 11:30 AM Saturdays through October 20, join naturalist Bruce Ause on a one-mile interpretive nature hike. Fun for all ages! The topics vary based on what is naturally occurring each week.
Check signs at the park office or campground sanitation building for cancellations.
Trying for the 125 Miles by Bike, Boot or Boat Challenge? This event can help you add a little distance.
Frontenac State Park

Fall Festival
10 AM to 2 PM Enjoy the rich colors of fall while learning about the history of the park and those who came before us. Come explore the park and the trails on your own, while enjoying the fall colors or participate in the many activities going on during this annual celebration of fall event. There will be something for the whole family, so come experience one of these events:
– Harvest Games- Apple on a string and tug of war, or enjoy a jump in a pile of leaves.
– Dutch Oven Cooking Demonstrations
– Archery in the Park
– Butter Making
– Apple Bobbing
– Fall Arts and Crafts
– And much more!
Lake Carlos State Park

Prairie Seed Collection —Volunteer!
10 AM to 11:30 AM Families, friends, individuals and groups are encouraged to help out at Fort Ridgely State Park?s Prairie Seed Collection. We will be meeting at the Upper Picnic Shelter. Following a brief orientation, the group will move to the prairie to collect and sort native seeds. No experience is necessary to participate. Volunteers should wear proper clothes including gloves and footwear appropriate for working in uneven terrain and among tall grasses and plants. The collected and clean seed from native plants will be used to help restore the prairie at Fort Ridgely State Park.
Fort Ridgely State Park

Birding for Beginners
10 AM to 11:30 AM Birding is an enjoyable and challenging hobby. Join the naturalist for a birding hike and learn about the basic techniques of bird identification. Binoculars are provided. Registration is required. Please call 612-725-2724 to register. Program will start at the Thomas C. Savage Visitor Center.
Fort Snelling State Park

Fall Colors Scavenger Hunt
10 AM to 3 PM Explore the park for signs of fall and discover why leaves change color during this easy scavenger hunt. Pick up your copy at the park visitor center between 10 and 3.
Interstate State Park

Fall Trail Walk: Woods, Wings & Wildlife
10:30 AM to 11:30 AM On this 1/2-mile trail walk we will discuss Kathio’s fall forest as well as the birds and other animals that make this place their home. Meet at the Interpretive Center.
Mille Lacs Kathio State Park

The Boys Who Built Gooseberry
10:30 AM to 12 PM
Step back in time to discover the lives of the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) boys who lived and built Gooseberry Falls State Park. Explore the park’s creation through their eyes and hard work. Hear how building the park changed their lives forever. Discover where they lived, what they built and what remains as the landscape reveals the park’s hidden past. Trail includes stairs, uneven surfaces and great views. Meet at the Visitor Center Art Column for this hike.
Gooseberry Falls State Park

Lil’ Park PEEPS – Fall & Trees
10:30 AM to 11:30 AM Bring your ?Lil? PEEP? to this preschool environmental education program designed for ages 2 ? 5 years. This month we?ll explore trees and the changing fall season through engaging stories, songs, activities and outdoor exploration. Depending on weather conditions we may spend part of the program outdoors, so bring appropriate clothing. Meet at the River Inn Interpretive Center.
Jay Cooke State Park

Pothole Exploration Tour
12 PM to 1 PM Discover how lakes of lava and gushing glacial waters formed the park’s unique potholes as you journey over, under and through world-renowned rock features on this naturalist-guided tour. This 45-minute walk includes some uneven terrain and stairs. Meet at the visitor center.
Interstate State Park

Sharing Nature through Writing
1 PM to 3 PM Join area poet and Minnesota Master Naturalist volunteer, Sherry Anderson, to celebrate Autumn through written words. Please bring your own pencil and paper and your favorite poem or prose piece related to nature. We will take a short hike and you?ll be encouraged to find a quiet place to write. We’ll then meet back at the visitor center to share your writing with the group, if you choose. There will be an opportunity to post your poem or short prose piece on the Friends of Whitewater State Park website.
Whitewater State Park

Civilian Conservation Corps Discovery Tent
1:30 PM to 4 PM The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) sculpted Gooseberry and many other MN State Parks into existence. Throughout the park, you can see evidence of their park. Stop by to explore the remains of this rich past and learn stories from these incredible young men.
Drop by along paved trail to the falls.
Gooseberry Falls State Park

Game Cameras for Wildlife Watching – RESCHEDULED FOR 10/15
2 PM to 4 PM Ryan Pennesi, naturalist, wildlife photographer, and wildlife biologist, will share his knowledge of “trapping” animals with a game camera. Technical issues regarding the cameras will be covered, as well as how to read the landscape to increase your chances of success. A short hike to some pre-set “camera traps” may reveal some of the animals that call Tettegouche home.
Tettegouche State Park

Stories in the Stars: Ojibwe Constellations
6:30 PM to 8 PM Stars have long been the center of imagination and legend. They have been used to record the stories of the past. The Ojibwe also used the stars as a way to remember the oral history of their people and marked the rise and fall of the seasons. Come discover for yourself the beautiful history of the Ojibwe people told through the stars. We will start at Lady Slipper Lodge then move to the picnic flow to view the Ojibwe Constellations for ourselves. Bug spray and flashlight recommended.
Gooseberry Falls State Park

40th Anniversary Celebration!
8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. The refuge is marking its 40th anniversary with a public celebration! The day-long celebration will feature events throughout the refuge and includes hands-on, family-friendly activities such as birding, fishing, hiking and more. Come and celebrate this urban oasis for animal and nature lovers alike, and learn more about one of Minnesota’s best-kept secrets! Click here for more info.
Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge Locations

Pumpkinfest
10:00 am – 3:00 pm All are invited to this special day of indoor and outdoor fun at the Aurora Community Building, located on the corner of Main Street and 1st Street West. Vendor registration
Downtown Aurora (Iron Range Country)

Fall Native Shrub & Tree Hike —Limited Space, Sign Up Fast!
1–2:30 PM Explore the nature center yard and hike the trails. Meet native trees and shrubs that provide food and shelter for wildlife along with fall color and winter interest. Learn which common nursery shrubs are invasive and should be avoided. Drop off your 2016 Maplewood Tree Rebate if you haven’t already done so (due October 15th). Dress for the weather and wear shoes suitable for hiking! Register by Oct 5.

 

10/09/2016

Mankato River Ramble
8 AM – 3:30 PM Escape the Twin Cities to some of the best bicycling Minnesota has to offer. Join us for the 5th annual Mankato River Ramble on October 9, 2016. Don’t miss this family friendly tradition!

Wagon Rides
10–5 Many fun free family-friendly activities week-long. See all the activities here.
Aamodt’s Apple Farm (Stillwater: 6428 Manning Avenue 55082)

Lore of the Loon
10:30 AM A talk about the natural history and mysterious calls of Minnesota’s State Bird will be followed by the classic nature film Legacy for a Loon. Meet at the Interpretive Center. (45 minutes)
Mille Lacs Kathio State Park

Falls View Hike
11 AM to 12 PM Come witness the rich history of Gooseberry Falls State Park as we hike around the falls. Don’t forget your camera. Hike includes descending stairs on this 3/4 mile walk.
Gooseberry Falls State Park Meet at the Visitor Center Art Column.

Pothole Exploration Tour
12 PM to 1 PM Discover how lakes of lava and gushing glacial waters formed the park’s unique potholes as you journey over, under and through world-renowned rock features on this naturalist-guided tour. This 45-minute walk includes some uneven terrain and stairs. Meet at the visitor center.
Interstate State Park

Fall Color Walk
1 PM to 2 PM The days are getting shorter and the nights becoming longer. Temperature drops and people are putting on their thicker clothes. It is that time of the year again when leaves are showing their true colors as the green chlorophyll fades away. Join us and find out which species of plant have the most colorful leaves. Program will start at the Thomas C. Savage Visitor Center.
Fort Snelling State Park

Pioneer/Old Time Music & Bluegrass Jam
3 PM to 5 PM Imagine the songs that echoed off the bluffs in the Whitewater Valley during the days of the pioneers. Park visitors along with bluegrass pickers and old time music players of all skill levels are invited to re-create the music of our ancestors the second Sunday of each month, May – October. Meet at the amphitheater behind the visitor center.
Whitewater State Park

Upcoming . . . Register Now!

10/16/2016
Lake Maria State Park Orienteering Meet* FREE–$27
12pm (noon) to 1:30pm Lake Maria is a 1756-acre park that is home to one of the few remaining stands of the ‘Big Woods’ forests in Minnesota. The park features rolling hills, kettle depressions, and ridges – perfect terrain for a challenging orienteering meet! Meet at the visitors’ center for check-in and start/finish locations.Regular Orienteering Meet with White/Yellow, Orange, Brown, Green, and Red Courses (All Skill Levels). Click here to register
Monticello, MN

October 26, 2016
Nature-Based Therapeutic Conference* $165.00 (General registration)
8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. “Speak! A Kinship of All Creatures: Broadening our knowledge of Human-Animal Interactions” is about our human partnership with animals, the natural world and the way in which positive interactions with animals increases individual health and community well-being. This conference will provide participants with a new understanding of animal intelligence and how the knowledge will advance the field of human-animal interactions. It is an opportunity for professionals, academics, and practitioners within schools, social services, healthcare clinics, community-based organizations and families to exchange ideas, discuss and collaborate in animal intelligence.Fees include morning coffee/tea, lunch and admission to the Arboretum. Click here to register
MacMillan Auditorium, Minnesota Landscape Arboretum

January 7 and 21, February 4 and 18 $155
Creating a Home Landscape You Can Love and Enjoy
1:30 p.m. -­ 4:30 p.m.Design your home landscape exactly the way you want it! In this 4­-part series, your own yard is your class project. With attentive instruction from Jim Calkins, you will learn the theory and principles of landscape design, analyze soils, explore the landscape design process, investigate proper plant selection and more. Throughout the series, you will develop a functional, manageable, environmentally sound, cost-­effective, and visually pleasing design unique to your setting. Hands-­on, take-­home assignments will have you putting pencil to paper and applying what you’ve learned, with time for personalized critique of your ideas. Limit 16, Learning Center By Minnesota Nursery and Landscape Association. Register here
Minnesota Landscape Arboretum

Saturday, February 4
Trees: Pruning Essentials $55
9:30 a.m. -­ noon Proper and timely pruning is essential to the health of your trees and shrubs; winter is the best time to prune to ensure their long-­term health and productivity. With Kathy’s expert guidance, you will learn theory and practical application for pruning and training your woody plants. Instruction will cover both deciduous and coniferous cultivars. Other topics covered will be based on class interest and could include maximizing longevity, minimizing maintenance, easy fruit harvesting, and applying pesticides correctly. Weather permitting, you will spend time out in the Arboretum collections for demonstration and on-­site instruction. Come dressed to spend time outdoors. Limit 22, Visitor Center. Click here to register
Minnesota Landscape Arboretum

 

 

–Visit Aamodt’s Apple Farm this fall for free outdoor activities and fun for the whole family! Visit https://www.aamodtsapplefarm.com/