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Milwaukee Urban Ecology Blog

Written by Urban Ecology Center
Saturday, 20 May 2017
Collaborating with Menomonee Valley Partners, our branch is the hub of natural restoration and community. Some highlights include partnering with 19 schools, over 50 afterschool programs and 18 Summer Camps.
Written by Jaime Cano
Friday, 19 May 2017
The Menomonee Valley is a special place. I could write endlessly about all the cool stuff we do at our branch and in the surrounding neighborhoods. I have had rich personal experiences as I dove into this south side community. Some of the most fun adventures involved … food! We talk a lot at the Urban Ecology Center about “So much life!” In our south side community you could also say “So much food!” We provide community gardens for our neighbors, enjoy guest teachers who share their cooking knowledge, and share meals with colleagues from others organizations to build community.
Written by Chad Thomack
Friday, 19 May 2017
It was one of those freakishly warm days in February when the temperatures rose into the low 70s. I was working with a group of excited, but respectful, 2nd graders from Franklin Pierce Elementary. We were focusing on one of the most important of nature’s resources, soil. Inside we learned how the FBI (fungus, bacteria, and invertebrates) change sticks, leaves and other organic material into soil. Then we headed outside for some exploring. We made our way in the warm sun to a multitude of dirt piles we use for adding soil to our park. Each student was given a spade as their scientific instrument. Soon the students were digging in the dirt more enthusiastically than a dog digging for…
Written by Tim Vargo
Wednesday, 17 May 2017
I’ve always thought it a little strange that one of the most important identifiers we carry—our names—are usually given to us by someone else. Of course we can always choose to go by nicknames, middle names or change names completely.
Written by Ken Leinbach
Monday, 15 May 2017
As we created Urban Ecology Center branches, we were barely thinking outside of the bounds of our neighborhoods. Our goals were all about “acting local” - protecting and enhancing Milwaukee’s natural areas and its surrounding waters. “Thinking global” was attainable, but “acting global” seemed a bit out of reach. The thought of our work having anything to do with places as far flung as Guatemala, Mexico, Israel, the Congo or Tanzania was not even possible to conceive of back in those earlier days.
Written by Guest Blogger
Monday, 15 May 2017
On May 6th, 2017, brothers Zion Singh Ponder (4 years old) and Zephaniah Singh Ponder (8 years old) hosted the Epic World Dance Party. This was their second year doing the Epic World Dance Party in partnership with the Urban Ecology Center. The boys invited dancers from around the city to teach mini dancing lessons during the party. This year, Mari Otero from Salsabrosa Dance Company taught Salsa and Bachata. Gabi Sustache from Danceworks Milwaukee taught Modern Dancing.
Written by MaryBeth Kressin
Wednesday, 26 April 2017
As we bid farewell to April, National Poetry Month once again comes to a close. This year the Urban Ecology Center celebrated poetry and the earth on two special evenings. The Thursday before Earth Day brought a new group of poets and energy into the center with Spirit and Nature – A reading and Conversation with Anishinaabe Poets. The following night was the annual Earth Poets and Musicians Earthstravaganza. This marked the 30th anniversary of this group meeting, sharing words with our community and celebrating the earth.
Written by Guest Blogger
Tuesday, 18 April 2017
Earth Day is nearly upon us. Each year we pause on April 22nd to think about ecology, climate change, preservation—survival. This past year, people the world over have come together around the protection of our waters, taking up the chant "Water is Life."   Now as we think about the health of our planet, I invite you to consider the way we "story" water, the earth, the sky, and all the natural beings in the universe. In The Truth About Stories Indigenous writer Tom King asks, "Do the stories we tell reflect the world as it truly is, or did we simply start off with the wrong story?"
Written by Urban Ecology Center
Wednesday, 12 April 2017
April 22nd is Earth Day, celebrated around the world as a day to protect, steward and learn about the earth. Here at the Center we're inviting everyone to help celebrate with our Earth Day of Service, a morning of pitching in with friends and neighbors at each of our three branches to show some love to our little corner of the planet - come join us!
Written by Jeff Veglahn
Tuesday, 04 April 2017
A seed is small and complex, And will keep you perplexed, On how it relents, From seasons to next.
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