Sterne’s Woods & Fen Volunteer Work Day - 12.16.18

Time: 9:00 AM

Location: Sterne's outdoor pavilion, 5617 Hillside Dr, Crystal Lake

THE EVENT

Spend some time outdoors and help make a great park even better.  Volunteer at Sterne’s Woods & Fen on Sunday, December 16th from 9-11AM. We will be clearing invasive species beside the main trail. Invasive understory brush crowds out native species like oak saplings, shading them to death before they have chance to mature.  Even the tallest oaks in Sterne’s Woods are losing their lower limbs to competition with invasives.  We’ll cut out buckthorn and honeysuckle bushes giving the native understory plants and oaks a chance to grow.

 

THE GROUP

We meet once a month from 9-11AM at Sterne's outdoor pavilion, 5617 Hillside Dr.  Volunteers have a chance to learn about restoration ecology and what makes Sterne’s special.  Bring a waterbottle and a pair of work gloves.  The park district will supply tools, and I will bring treats.  Email Brice Alt, volunteer site steward, to receive updates: bricemaieralt@hotmail.com  The next several volunteer dates are:   Jan 27, Feb 24, and March 24.

 

THE PARK

Sterne’s Woods & Fen became an Illinois State Nature Preserve in 1994 to preserve and protect its unique ecology.  A fen is a rare type of wetland in which cold groundwater that is high in calcium and magnesium seeps to the surface.  The unique water chemistry supports plants that grow nowhere else.  Sterne’s Fen is home to at least 10 rare or endangered plant species.  The surrounding parkland acts as a buffer to the fen and includes prairie, oak savanna, and flatwood ecosystems.  Every one of those ecosystems can benefit from the efforts of volunteers.  Join us once a month and learn about them!

 

THANK YOU

We've applied for a $4,000 Community Stewardship Challenge Grant from the Illinois Clean Energy Foundation.  We need to document 400 volunteer hours over 18 months to earn the grant.  Much thanks to the groups who have volunteered with us at Sterne's: MUDD, the Silver and Sleepy Hollow Creeks Watershed Coalition, the Environmental Defenders of McHenry County, the BREAK, Jacobs High School Interact, Girl Scout Troop 888, Cub Scout Pack 156, and Boy Scout Troops 158 and 368.

 

ECOLOGIC RESTORATION

By volunteering at a Sterne's workday you're helping with the ecologic restoration of an exceedingly rare type of habitat. 

To learn more about restoration ecology, here's a quick video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VNwQ6cRMTKI

 

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