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Kristin Nelson

Kristin Nelson

Kristin is the Development Systems and Membership Specialist at the Urban Ecology Center and is deeply inspired by the generosity of our members, donors, and volunteers. She is delighted and humbled everyday to see kids grow, learn and heal through the Center’s programs. When she’s not at the Center, Kristin is working on her MS in Community Psychology, painting, and playing and laughing with her son.

On a warm Saturday morning, I met the Beyer family at the Urban Ecology Center’s Riverside park location. Immediately upon entering the doors, the four family members scattered energetically around the building. Kirsten watched and waited as daughter Sophie, age 7, darted to the game area and pulled out toys, blocks, and a “See and Say” that made animal noises. Dad Andreas and son Alden, age 3, were not within my periphery and I wondered if they decided not to come. Kirsten detected an inquisitive look in my eye.

On a bright, cheery Tuesday morning, I met Dan, Sherri, Josiah, and Tirzah Jibson at the Urban Ecology Center’s Menomonee Valley Branch. Immediately, I saw a glimpse of each family member’s unique personality through their independent engagement with other Center visitors. Dan sat in a circle with the morning Bird Walk group, listening carefully while sharing a huge smile and kind laugh. Sherri chatted and sipped hot chocolate with another birder and Center member, Carolyn Vargo. Josiah and Tirzah each played with Carolyn’s young grandchildren, who clearly loved the individual attention they were receiving from the older Jibson kids. Even though these interactions were separate, a shared glow of patience, grace, and serenity emanated from each of the Jibsons that clearly united them as family.

When the Young-Harris family welcomed me into their house on a cold Saturday morning, Donald and Donovin politely greeted me at the door. Golden sunlight streamed into their warm, cozy home, and they offered me a seat on their couch. Within moments, their mother Katrina Young-Harris walked into the living room where I sat with her boys, and she shared a smile so big and warm that I instantly felt “at home” with this family.

Long-time Urban Ecology Center member Andy Connors is a born storyteller. Growing up within the Anishinaabe community along the Bad River in northern Wisconsin, Andy developed a strong sense of Native American identity through his ability to engage and connect with others through storytelling. Embracing his outgoing personality and narrative skills, Andy obtained a degree in Journalism, performed Native American folk music, and shared his stories of nature and cultural identity as a teacher at the Indian Community School in Milwaukee.

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Early Morning Bird Walks (Menomonee Valley) - Cancelled

Menomonee Valley

Tuesday, March 31st

8:00 AM - 10:00 AM

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ROOT - Riverside Park

Riverside Park

Tuesday, March 31st

9:00 AM - 11:00 AM

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