Through a collaborative effort of Conversacion de Conservacion (C de C), comprised of The Environmental Defenders, The Land Conservancy, The McHeny County Conservation District and Friends of Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge, we are pleased to bring conservation outings and a special EnviroZOOM to our Latino community 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 & 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 2PM to 4PM. Each organization of C de C will hold an outdoor educational outing to a conservation 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 on its property in Woodstock, at 2222 S. Dean Street. This 8-acres parcel was purchased by The Defenders through a grant from the Grand Victoria Foundation 20 years ago and preserves open space, a shagbark hickory grove and wetlands at the headwaters of the Kishwaukee River. A walk around the property, which abuts Conservation District and Soil & Water Conservation District lands is the proposed future site of a community solar farm. Sign up by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Land Conservancy will hold two outings, one at Gateway Nature Park, Heritage Lane, Harvard and the other at Wolf Oak Woods, 9100 IL Route 120, Woodstock. Gateway Nature Park 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 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.
Friends of Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge offers a self-guided tour of the first site in their new Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge, the Turner Tract in Genoa City Wisconsin, just ½ mile north of Richmond, Illinois. The self-guided tour is to occur on Sunday, July 19th from 2 to 4 p.m. as part of Latino Conservation Week. 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.
On July 22 there will be a special EnviroZOOM with guest panelist speaking on diversity in conservation.
In addition to the above, the McHenry County Conservation District’s Roaming Naturalist programs will be held during Latino Conservation Week with Spanish-language translators available during each program. Roaming Naturalists travel to different District sites to help you learn more about site amenities and local plants and animals. Join us on Saturday, July 18 from 10:00am-12:00pm at Elizabeth Lake Nature Preserve in Richmond; Tuesday, July 21 from 9:30-11:30am at The Hollows in Crystal Lake, Thursday, July 23 from 9:30-11:30am at Harrison Benwell in Wonder Lake; and Saturday, July 25 from 10:00am-12:00pm at Lyons Prairie and Marsh in Cary. Registration is not required for these free programs.