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Milwaukee Urban Ecology Blog

Written by Matt Flower
Friday, 30 October 2015
Despite my bias, I can honestly say that the Urban Ecology Center puts together a summer camp experience that even the most pristine and remote wilderness camp could never provide. One consistent comment parents and kids say about our summer camps is that we always do something fun and different every day in ways that showcase our great city. Milwaukee is a vibrant urban landscape with many gems waiting to be uncovered and part of our summer camp experience is to uncover those gems. We still provide a healthy dose of outdoor exploration, of course, but I think we offer aspects that might surprise you. They are an incredible mix of fun, fascination, adventure, exploration and opportunity.
Written by Glenna Holstein
Thursday, 29 October 2015
This time of year always gets me thinking about gratitude (I probably say that every November). This year, I want to share a story that perfectly captured for me why I’m so grateful to be a part of this work, and why I’m grateful for the support of so many people that make this work possible. Last spring, I had the opportunity to teach a 3rd grade Neighborhood Environmental Education Project class at our Menomonee Valley branch. It was a glorious late spring day—sunny with just that faintest taste of summer coming around the corner.
Written by Terry Evans
Wednesday, 28 October 2015
“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” - Benjamin Franklin The Washington Park community is calling for YOU! Tell a friend, a co-worker, a relative, or an organization. Tell everyone, at the top of your lungs. Tell someone about the great partnership opportunities at the Urban Ecology Center in Washington Park. Recently we have been partnering with more and more youth-serving agencies, the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee for example, across the entire city and have really enjoyed the opportunity to actively work with and teach our young people about the environment and being responsible stewards. The challenge has been and will continue to be fun and rewarding.
Written by Beth Heller
Tuesday, 27 October 2015
“An oasis in a city to learn about nature and teach kids about nature.” This is what one community forum participant said about our Menomonee Valley branch when asked how he would describe the Urban Ecology Center to a friend. Another said “It is a place to have fun and laugh.” And when asked about challenges we can help address in the neighborhood, we heard that we should continue to “increase safety along the bike path,” provide more “options for kids in the neighborhood,” and perhaps add programs to help address “balanced nutrition … Kids eat unhealthy foods.”
Written by Ken Leinbach
Monday, 26 October 2015
Do you remember those little gift books you used to give as a kid? You’d spend hours, carefully creating hand-made “coupons” for someone special. The promise was to take an ordinary experience and add a little extra. One might say you’d do the dishes without complaining. Another would say you’d give your parents a hug or plan a movie night. They were fun to make and even more fun when redeemed ... well, except for the chores, but even those would change ordinary activities into extraordinary experiences as grownups would often join in to help.
Written by Ken Leinbach
Wednesday, 07 October 2015
It is with great excitement that I get to announce that the Urban Ecology Center has two new directors on staff! Jen (Feltz) Hense is our Director of Development and Jeff McAvoy is our Director of Marketing and Communications. These two fantastic individuals have joined the Leadership Team of the Center, meaning that they are helping to make key decisions and shape the future of the Urban Ecology Center.
Written by MaryBeth Kressin
Friday, 02 October 2015
I love working at Riverside Park on a Sunday. It is unlike any other day of the week. True, it is the shortest day that we have open hours (only from 12-5), but in those five hours the laughter, playing and energy cannot compare to any others. "Walk" with me and see what a typical Sunday is like. The cool quiet moments before the building opens there is an almost palpable peace as our small but strong weekend staff prepares for the day. After we walk around straightening this and that, make sure the coffee is brewed and the music is turned on, we unceremoniously unlock the front door.
Written by Ken Leinbach
Wednesday, 23 September 2015
Our first-ever fundraising hike, HKE MKE, was on Sunday September 20th and it was a fantastic event! Over 200 people of all ages came out on a beautiful day for our 2.5-mile hike through the Milwaukee Rotary Centennial Arboretum and the Milwaukee River Corridor.
Written by Urban Ecology Center
Wednesday, 02 September 2015
Spending time outdoors, actively engaging with nature is what our Summer Camps are all about! Our campers explore the secrets of nature by looking under logs, hiking in the woods, climbing trees, building forts, creating art projects, taking pictures and more with kids from all over the city. They’re building science and engineering skills to be better prepared for school year.
Written by Urban Ecology Center
Wednesday, 02 September 2015
Did you know that September is Coastal Awareness Month? Here at the Center we’re celebrating our amazing “third coast” with a number of water-based educational programs geared toward educational exploration and recreation of Milwaukee’s watersheds.

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