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Displaying items by tag: Menomonee Valley
Wednesday, 06 May 2015 00:00

Volunteer Power at the Front Desk

“Do you like animals? There’s a room filled with Wisconsin Animals and a S-L-I-D-E” our Saturday morning receptionist Sybil Rockwell said smiling.

“A what?!” said a visiting child. He begins to sound out the letters “S-L-I-D-E, sl-ide, slide”. “There’s a slide here!?” said the child excitedly.

"Your right!" answered Sybil, “Let’s go find it!”

This is just one example of the many unique interaction that our volunteer receptionists provide our visitors.

The front desk receptionists are a dedicated crew of volunteers that return week after week for a 2-3 hour shift. They play an important role for our operations and work towards our mission of ecological understanding and growing community.

Wednesday, 29 April 2015 00:00

The Importance of Paying Attention

Being an ecologist, in many ways, is about paying attention. In springtime, the Center is particularly good at this: the staff have their eyes and ears on high alert for that first jubilant trill of a Red-winged Blackbird or the first striped flash of a chipmunk that will let us know the wait for spring is over.

But the everyday observations are just as important as the “firsts.” That’s how we learn to understand the natural world and notice changes or needs arising in our own ecosystem.

Friday, 06 March 2015 00:00

Not Just A Rock

The morning sunlight shimmered on the rippling surface of the river. It was a beautiful day in late fall as second graders hiked along the Menomonee Valley trails. The excitement of the kids grew as the trail got more and more covered by the trees. I realized that the border between them and the natural world had started to break down when I heard a few “wows” for a Blue Heron that flew by and a salmon going up the river to spawn. You could sense the connection one student had as she held an improvised walking stick.

Thursday, 19 February 2015 00:00

The $755,000 Hank Aaron Challenge!

Ce-le-brate good times, come on!
There’s a party goin’ on right here
A celebration to last throughout the years
So bring your good times
and your laughter too
We gonna celebrate your party with you

Do you remember that song from Kool and the Gang? Well guess what folks, we have our own Kool Gang and wow, do we have something to celebrate!

"When are the gardens going to be open?!" This is a question that the Menomonee Valley Young Scientists would ask last year over and over again. The roar and grumble of the tractor machinery was heard throughout Three Bridges Park as workers installed 40 raised garden beds and three arbors, airy structures that will support vine plants.

Tuesday, 06 January 2015 00:00

Why What We Do Matters

The turn of the year is always a good time for reflection-- to ask, “Why do I do what I do?”

Sometimes it’s really hard for me to answer that question. We live in a city plagued by segregation, disparity and systemic violence, within a country that often feels paralyzed by political polarization. Against this backdrop, I sometimes find myself planning a snowshoe program and wondering, “Isn’t there more I could be doing?” and “Is this work really that important?”

I think the answer to both of these questions is “yes.”

Monday, 10 November 2014 00:00

Snow and Go!

Get notified about spontaneous winter adventures! Sign up for our “Snow and Go" group!

Knowing when Wisconsin’s snow will fall is difficult to determine, but having fun in that snow is not! When snow conditions are too perfect to stay indoors, you will receive an email notifying you of a spontaneous winter recreation program — sledding, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, making snow angels — whatever the snow calls for!

Monday, 17 November 2014 00:00

The Greatest Gift

Hi, it’s me, Ken! I’m thinking about what to give to the special people in my life during this giving season. Should I give them an Urban Ecology Center gift membership? A Center t-shirt? Or maybe a day outdoors in the snow? Hmm, perhaps I should ask around. "What does the fox say?"

Thursday, 30 October 2014 00:00

Appreciating Wild Spaces

I am writing this article on my way back to Milwaukee after an incredible trip to Alaska. Willie Karidis, with lighthearted expertise, gave the Urban Ecology Center eco-travel group a wonderful experience of wilderness. We witnessed Denali, the tallest mountain on the continent, rise out of brilliant reds and yellows of Alaska autumn. We marveled at moose and wandered among wolf tracks. We splashed through icy rivers and padded across spongy tundra. It was a trip filled with awe for vast expanses of beauty that stretched as far as we could see and amazement at remarkable minutia close enough to touch. Willie called it “Subarctic splendor.”

But this article is not about the Alaskan wilderness.

Thursday, 28 August 2014 00:00

Inventive EcoArtists

Summer camp at the Urban Ecology Center is awesome for me as an educator. It’s laid back and having the same campers for four days means we have the opportunity to focus on activities they are interested in and help them gain a more in-depth knowledge of the environments just outside the Center’s doors.

Upcoming Events

Event Listings

Volunteer Papermaking

Riverside Park

Monday, December 11th

4:00 PM - 5:30 PM

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Nature Rangers: Monday Series

Riverside Park

Monday, December 11th

4:00 PM - 5:30 PM

More Details...

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