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Public Programs

The Prairie in the Fall

Photo by Scott Sharkey

Registration is required for events marked with an asterisk (*).  Programs and events may be cancelled due to inclement weather.  For more information, call 952-854-5900.  

  • March and April Art Exhibit: Nancy Dardis

    Nancy Dardis Art Gallery

    Nancy Dardis' Pyrography Exhibit, which includes over 30 pieces of wood burning, will be available for viewing in the art gallery at the Bloomington Education and Visitor Center between March 1-April 30. Additionally, Nancy will be conducting live demonstrations from 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. on Saturdays, March 11, 25 and April 15.

    This Bloomington artist has been working in pyrography since 2000 and she works primarily on basswood. Her subjects are studies of wildlife in its natural habitat. The works in this particular exhibit range from owls, eagles and songbirds to deer, wolves and moose.

    In addition, Dardis enjoys doing pet portrait commissions from photographs. She works to capture that special spark or certain cock of the head that makes each pet special.

    Be sure to browse the gallery on your next visit to the refuge!

  • Poetry Corner

    Tuesday - Saturdays in April
    9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
    Bloomington Education and Visitor Center (Hearth Room)

    Celebrate National Poetry Month with us! Every week, we will have a different type of poetry prompt and nature-related poetry books to browse. Stop by the refuge and try your hand at composing a haiku, acrostic, limerick or shape poem on our magnetic whiteboard.

  • Family Fun Night

    Friday, April 21
    5:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
    Bloomington Education and Visitor Center

    Pack a picnic dinner and eat here at the refuge. Learn about some amazing local and exotic critters and spend some time meeting them in person! Create your very own journal to record all the cool critters you meet and end the evening with a guided night hike! Sign up here and click here to view the flyer.

  • Earth Day Clean Up!

    Saturday, April 22
    8:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.
    Bloomington Education and Visitor Center

    Celebrate Earth Day by participating in our Annual Earth Day Clean-Up at Minnesota Valley. Bring the family and help us pick up trash at the Bloomington Education and Visitor Center.  Your assistance improves wildlife habitat so get connected to nature on Earth Day! Supplies and equipment provided. Dress for the weather.

     

  • Story Hike: One Dog Canoe

    Saturday, April 22
    Ranger-led Hike: 1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.
    Self-guided Hikes: 9:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
    Bloomington Education and Visitor Center (Hillside Trail)

    April is a great month to get back outside! Join a ranger for an easy hike for little legs and read pages of One Dog Canoe by Mary Casanova as you go! There will be a different story to read each week, giving you reasons to come time and time again. This trail is not stroller friendly, so please come prepared.

    While there is an afternoon ranger-led hike, the laminated story pages will be located throughout the loop and available for you to explore at your own pace from 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.!

  • Bird Watching Trek

    Monday, April 24
    8:00 - 10:30 a.m.  
    Rapids Lake Unit

    Join us for a bird watching trek at the Rapids Lake Unit and learn about the birds that visit the refuge during their spring migration. During spring migration observe a mix of waterfowl, raptors, warblers, and other songbirds resting and feeding before they continue their northerly migration. Birders of all skill levels are welcome. Bring along your binoculars, your favorite field guide, and dress appropriately for the weather.

    Led by Craig Mandel, Volunteer Refuge Naturalist 

    You can reach Craig at (952) 240-7647 if you have any questions or need help finding the Rapids Lake Visitor Center!

  • Bird Watching Trek

    Saturday, April 29
    8:00 - 10:30 a.m.
    Old Cedar Avenue Trailhead 

    Join us for a bird watching trek at the Old Cedar Avenue Trailhead of the Long Meadow Lake Unit and learn about the birds that visit the refuge during their spring migration. During spring migration observe a mix of waterfowl, raptors, warblers, and other songbirds resting and feeding before they continue their northerly migration. Birders of all skill levels are welcome. Bring along your binoculars, your favorite field guide, and dress appropriately for the weather.

    Led by Craig Mandel, Volunteer Refuge Naturalist 

    You can reach Craig at (952) 240-7647 if you have any questions or need help finding the trailhead!

  • Story Hike: Turtle Splash

    Saturday, April 29
    Ranger-led Hike: 1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.
    Self-guided Hikes: 9:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
    Bloomington Education and Visitor Center (Hillside Trail)

    April is a great month to get back outside! Join a ranger for an easy hike for little legs and read pages of Turtle Splash by Cathryn Falwell as you go! There will be a different story to read each week, giving you reasons to come time and time again. This trail is not stroller friendly, so please come prepared.

    While there is an afternoon ranger-led hike, the laminated story pages will be located throughout the loop and available for you to explore at your own pace from 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.!

  • Outdoor Poetry Wrap!

    Saturday, April 29
    1 - 3 p.m.
    Bloomington Education and Visitor Center 

    Join the League of Minnesota Poets and Refuge staff in our woodsy outdoor Amphitheater for a poetry reading in celebration of National Poetry Month. We invite you to share your favorite poems or just come to listen as we connect to nature through poetry.

    A complete collection of poems submitted to us throughout April and Poetry Basics will be available in the Visitor Center. All ages are welcome to participate. 

  • Spring Flowers Photo Hike and Lecture

    Saturday, May 6
    9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
    Bloomington Education and Visitor Center

    May is an interesting time in Minnesota for flowers. Before the trees leaf out, there are a number of spring ephemerals that bloom. These last only a couple of weeks before they are gone! Our goal will be to try and locate some of these flowers and try a number of different techniques for capturing them.

    We will begin in the classroom with a presentation on flower photography that will help you get some of those "wow" photos. Who knows, you may even get a great shot to share with Mom on Mother's Day! Some of the topics to be covered are:

    -5 types of flower photography
    -Challenges
    -Tips and tricks
    -Locations for photographing flowers

    After the class, we will go out and photograph some of the flowers around the refuge. Please bring bug spray, sturdy footwear, and long pants (we are in prime tick season).

    Led by Don Tredinnick and Peter Berman, Volunteer Refuge Volunteers

  • Let's Talk Photography!

    Saturday, May 6
    1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.
    Oxboro Library (8801 Portland Ave S, Minneapolis)

    Join us at Oxboro Library to learn how more about photography!

    Have you ever wanted to learn how to capture those breath taking nature photos you see everywhere? Well, here is your opportunity to learn. Join us for a free introductory class on how to take beautiful photos in nature and learn what it takes to capture those once in a life time moments.

    View flyer here. 

  • Bird Watching Trek

    Sunday, May 7
    8:00 - 10:30 a.m.  
    Bloomington Education and Visitor Center  

    Join us for a bird watching trek at the Bloomington Education and Visitor Center and learn about the birds that visit the refuge during their spring migration. During spring migration observe a mix of waterfowl, raptors, warblers, and other songbirds resting and feeding before they continue their northerly migration. Birders of all skill levels are welcome. Bring along your binoculars, your favorite field guide, and dress appropriately for the weather.

    Led by Craig Mandel, Volunteer Refuge Naturalist  

    You can reach Craig at (952) 240-7647 if you have any questions or need help finding the trailhead!

  • Bird Watching Trek

    Saturday, May 13
    8:00 - 10:30 a.m.  
    Bloomington Education and Visitor Center 

    Join us for a bird watching trek at the Bloomington Education and Visitor Center and learn about the birds that visit the refuge during their spring migration. During spring migration observe a mix of waterfowl, raptors, warblers, and other songbirds resting and feeding before they continue their northerly migration. Birders of all skill levels are welcome. Bring along your binoculars, your favorite field guide, and dress appropriately for the weather.

    Led by Craig Mandel, Volunteer Refuge Naturalist  

    You can reach Craig at (952) 240-7647 if you have any questions or need help finding the trailhead!

  • Bird Watching Trek

    Tuesday, May 16
    8:00 - 10:30 a.m.  
    Bass Ponds  

    Join us for a bird watching trek at the Bass Ponds Trailhead of the Long Meadow Lake Unit and learn about the birds that visit the refuge during their spring migration. During spring migration observe a mix of waterfowl, raptors, warblers, and other songbirds resting and feeding before they continue their northerly migration. Birders of all skill levels are welcome. Bring along your binoculars, your favorite field guide, and dress appropriately for the weather.

    Led by Craig Mandel, Volunteer Refuge Naturalist  

    You can reach Craig at (952) 240-7647 if you have any questions or need help finding the trailhead! 

  • Bird Language*

    Saturday, June 3
    9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
    Bloomington Education and Visitor Center (Classroom A) 

    Join us as we gather on the slopes of the Minnesota River Valley to explore what the birds are telling us about our surroundings. We will split the time between the classroom and outdoors. Bring a notebook, pencils, and something to sit on outdoors. To register, visit: http://www.mntracking.org/. 

    Led by Jonathon Poppele and Donnie Phyillaier, Volunteer Refuge Naturalists 

  • Become a Wildlife Detective

    Wednesday, June 21
    2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
    Oxboro Library (8801 Portland Ave S, Minneapolis)

    Join us at Oxboro Library to learn how to become a wildlife detective!

    Have you ever wanted to be a detective? Are you good at solving mysteries? Well now is the time to put your skills to good use. Learn how to identify the animals you have in your own neighborhood by investigating the clues they leave behind, spend time learning to walk like an animal and become an official wildlife detective!

    View flyer here.

     

  • Monarch Madness

    Wednesday, July 19
    2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
    Oxboro Library (8801 Portland Ave S, Minneapolis)

    Join us at Oxboro Library to learn how more about Monarchs!

    Monarchs are not only beautiful, they are also pretty incredible. Come learn about their unique life cycle and the amazing journey they take each year. Spend time crafting the monarch’s life cycle and take home seeds so you can start your very own monarch garden!!

    View flyer here.

Last Updated: Apr 21, 2017
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