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Milwaukee Urban Ecology Blog

Written by Urban Ecology Center
Friday, 05 July 2013
From the Ground Up is an effort to improve job accessibility, science education, environmental and public health, and neighborhood vitality in the Menomonee Valley. It is a story of partnership, creative solutions, and profound impact.
Written by Jamie Ferschinger
Thursday, 04 July 2013
What good is an idea if it resides only in the isolation of one mind? Ideas that are shared and nurtured are those ideas that grow, become contagious, and bring about change. I believe that all ideas are valuable, even the ones that seem crazy at first. Diversity is essential for healthy, thriving, natural systems. Heterogeneity, not homogeneity, of ideas breeds innovation.
Written by Glenna Holstein
Wednesday, 03 July 2013
We are thrilled to announce that on Saturday, July 20th, Three Bridges Park will open in the Menomonee Valley! I can't wait to help you explore this 24-acre brownfield-turned-greenspace! This park marks the fourth and final piece in the "From the Ground Up" campaign, a joint effort of the Center, the Menomonee Valley Partners, the City of Milwaukee, the State of Wisconsin and many corporate and individual donors to revitalize the Valley and reconnect it to surrounding communities. As the land is healed, the community can become more vibrant.
Written by Erick Anderson
Tuesday, 02 July 2013
It has been a huge year for the Young Scientists Club at Washington Park. Reflecting on it all, I can't even believe we've accomplished so much in such a short period of time! Longtime member Donald Harris did his best attempt to summarize exactly what we do in our club in a quote found later in this post. As I try to summarize it myself, I'm not even sure where to begin. What began as a way to engage drop-in kids at Washington Park has evolved into a dynamic, multi-faceted educational and recreational program that I'm proud to be a part of. I'll summarize for you a few of its many highlights over the past 12 months. This past summer,…
Written by Beth Heller
Monday, 01 July 2013
With the addition of 25 acres of land along the Milwaukee River and Oak Leaf Trail to the existing 15 acres of restored natural lands of Riverside Park, we are gearing up for adventures and exploration of our new 40-acre Milwaukee Rotary Centennial Arboretum. You are invited to join in the fun through our new volunteer docent program. This training will prepare you to lead other nature and outdoor enthusiasts in learning about the Arboretum.
Written by Phenology Team
Friday, 28 June 2013
Flowers are fascinating! They adapt to a wide variety of growing conditions, provide food for insects, and intrigue us with the origins of their names. As we exit June and summer hits its stride, take a look at this overview of the flowers (like the blue flag iris to the right) that you can find right now!
Written by Urban Ecology Center
Thursday, 27 June 2013
In December 2003, 14 intrepid travelers embarked on a long-remembered journey. Their destination was Costa Rica, a land of majestic natural beauty, smiling faces and the occasional near hurricane-force winds. At the risk of sounding cliché, words can’t describe the incredible breadth of Costa Rica’s biodiversity, the warmth of the Tico (local) people, or its striking topography. Our group truly embodied the motto of Costa Rica - Pura Vida/Pure Life! - and lived life to the hilt throughout the 10 day tour. There is so much to share but let's start with the following journal excerpt, culled from pages submitted by trip participant Pat Mueller, which offers a glimpse of one of the more memorable experiences:
Written by Urban Ecology Center
Monday, 24 June 2013
Thanks to you, there is a whole year's worth of accomplishments, discoveries, openings, stories, celebrations and learning to share in our new annual report!  But, printing it on paper and mailing it out didn't align with our goals of being good stewards of the earth and our donors' contributions...
Written by Kristin Nelson
Friday, 21 June 2013
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…
Written by Anne Reis
Thursday, 20 June 2013
What other group of animals besides birds can you identify through binoculars, take colorful photographs of during the summer and track their migration in the spring? If you answered dragonflies and damselflies, you would be correct! Wisconsin is home to over 160 species of dragon and damselfies and summer is the time to monitor for these fast-winged, brilliantly- colored invertebrates. This year, two of the Center's Advanced Outdoor Leaders, Ethan Bott and Humzah Abdullah, will be leading the Odonata (the scientific group name for dragonflies and damselflies) Surveys with the help of volunteers from the Wisconsin Odonata Survey and the Wisconsin Dragonfly Society. Ethan and Humzah recently attended an Odonata workshop at UW-Waukesha led by experts from across the state.…

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