F R I E N D S O F R Y E N A T U R E C E N T E R

F R I E N D S O F R Y E N A T U R E C E N T E R

Program Guide F R I E N D S O F R Y E N A T U R E C E N T E R 2017 – 2018 P R O G R A M G U I D E | 2 0 1 7 – 2 0 1 8 1 Mission Become a ...

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Program Guide F R I E N D S

O F

R Y E

N A T U R E

C E N T E R

2017 – 2018

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Mission

Become a Member!

Friends of Rye Nature Center (FRNC) is an independent, not-for-profit organization which offers programs to people of all ages and abilities. We encourage conservation, provide environmental education, and support our community’s access to nature year-round.

As a Friend of the Rye Nature Center, you are contributing directly to the protection of our valuable natural resources. Your contributions give people of all ages, abilities, and economic backgrounds, the opportunity to learn about the natural world—its beauties, its mysteries, and its need for our care and protection, here in Rye, and throughout the world.

Visitor Center and Office

Connect

September 2017 - May 2018

Visit us at ryenaturecenter.org for information on programs, events, opportunities, and to sign up for our weekly e-blast newsletter.

Monday - Saturday 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

June 2018 - August 2018 Monday - Friday 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Like us on Facebook www.facebook.com/RyeNatureCenter

T: (914) 967-5150 • F: (914) 921-5968

Follow us on Instagram @ryenaturecenter

Green Birthday Parties at Rye Nature Center! Go green for your child’s next birthday party. We host birthday parties that are eco-friendly, educational, and, of course, a lot of fun! FRNC promotes parties with a green twist by providing reusable tableware and compostable goods. We even offer eco-friendly party favors for an additional fee. Choose from a variety of programs for all age groups – from animal adventures to herbal tea parties, there’s something for

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everyone. Price and guest limit vary based on party theme. Additional charges may apply. An Environmentalist-level membership ($100) or higher is required to book a party. Membership may be added at booking. If you choose to have your child’s birthday party at RNC, leave the balloons behind and step into Rye’s new green fashion. Visit our Birthdays page at www.ryenaturecenter.org for details.

Notes on Your Bigger Backyard “Children can’t bounce off the walls if we take away the walls.” – Erin Kenny, Founder and Director, Cedarsong Nature School

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s I write this, it is the third week in June and the weather has made a “suddenly it’s summer” dramatic twist. We are in the throes of our June Bugs camp for preschoolers – 155 children between the morning and the afternoon sessions. They are exploring the property, collecting worms, building shelters, and gardening. They are learning through nature immersion, using play to build their cognitive, emotional, and social foundation. Across the street, approximately 680 middle schoolers are in their second week of final exams – exams which are measuring their retention and mastery of all the information they have been taught since September. Late night cramming, parental pressure, and competitive peers make their experience a painfully inevitable part of life. And yet, when you really think about what they are trying to do for the sake of one test, the age appropriateness of it all is questionable. Though the seven years separating the five-year-old going into kindergarten and the twelve-year-old finishing sixth grade is a great gap, their brains are in need of the same benefits that exposure to nature, outdoor recreation, and hands-on exploration provide. In Europe, there is a proliferation of forest-based schools, particularly for the early childhood years. This past May, The New York Times ran a story about the blossoming forest kindergarten programs in Germany (they have over 1,500 of them). At the Nature Center, we have had early childhood programs for preschoolers and kindergarten-aged children for several years, but these programs have always been a short part of a child’s day. We are launching our own Forest Preschool this September, stemming from our desire to change the perception that being in nature is just another enrichment exercise and our commitment to cultivating the next generation of stewards. Our program, similar to several of the local nursery schools, will center on play, but unlike the average preschool, our classroom won’t have walls. Over 50% of the children’s time will be spent outside. Ten students are registered for this five-morning a week program which will be led by our Education Director, Allison Bedosky and our new Early Childhood Education Specialist, Rachael Pothula. The need to be outside is not just for children. As you look through this year’s guide, be sure to plan some nature immersion for yourself. We are offering fall and spring family campouts, and adult education programs on how to start gardening as well as how to mulch your leaves. With over 50 weeks of programs, there is sure to be a way for everyone in your family to get outside. With warm regards,

Christine Siller Executive Director

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Weekly Preschool Ecology

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riends of Rye Nature Center offers preschool students throughout the area the opportunity to spend a morning or afternoon exploring nature and learning about ecology through experiential, hands-on fun. Through meeting our animals and exploring hiking trails that lead to ponds and a quarry, classes foster a deeper understanding of and respect for the natural world. Our educators are experienced teachers with backgrounds in ecology and environmental science. We create an age-appropriate curriculum that follows the New York State Prekindergarten Foundation for the Common Core with a focus on science. Each session is fun, interactive, and intended to instill confidence in your child and a connection with nature. Preschoolers who are at least 3.5 years old by the start of the program may enroll. Children range in age from 3.5 through 5.5 in each class. Class is limited to 16 students with two instructors per class. Volunteers and/or additional teachers will be added as necessary. Children may attend once or multiple times per week. Children must bring lunch and wear clothes appropriate for exploring the outdoors.

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Registration Information Registration for the 2018–2019 school year will begin on Wednesday, January 10, 2018. We will offer sessions in the mornings from 9:20 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. and the afternoons from 11:30 a.m. to 2:20 p.m. Morning sessions will take place on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Afternoon sessions will take place on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. Students may register for more than one day.

Optional Nature Center Staff Pick-up: Children attending Rye Presbyterian Nursery School or Christ Church Nursery School have the option of having Friends of Rye Nature Center staff walk them to or from their local school and our program.

Forest Preschool

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unning up hills, catching dragonflies, digging for worms, listening to songbirds – these are some of the activities that fill our preschoolers’ time at the Rye Nature Center. Our new, five-morning Forest Preschool is an opportunity for children to make these activities the foundation of their early development. Our Forest Preschool is unlike any other preschool program – children will be in an outdoor, natural setting over 50% of their class week, year round.

Educational Philosophy Friends of Rye Nature Center believes that the best way to foster a lifelong connection to nature is by engaging in meaningful outdoor activities as a child. Our curriculum is based on the Swiss concept of forest kindergartens. This educational model utilizes experiential, place-based, student-led activities with nature as the primary setting to create a dynamic for children to grow and succeed. • Place-based philosophy—We believe children’s immediate natural surroundings promote knowledge acquisition.   • Nature is the primary teacher—We believe that the outdoors is the principle setting where childhood experiences and learning occur, and this early connection and understanding will shape our futures.   • Learn by doing—We believe that experiential education develops gross and fine motor skills and allows for the mastery of STEAM and literacy skills.

Curriculum Design Our staff creates a dynamic prioritizing the development of the whole child.  In addition to the best practices established by nature educators around the world, we use a variety of sources to inform each class, including New York State’s Prekindergarten Foundation for the Common Core.   We then develop a yearlong curriculum which targets and refines the naturally inquisitive behaviors of three-to five-year-old children. As a result, there is a cumulative acquisition of literacy, science, technology, engineering, art, and math concepts.  Music, dramatic play, and project work (e.g. fort-building, gardening) are also central to each class.  All activities are designed to help children develop: • Early literacy skills, • Math and science concepts, • Fine and gross motor skills, • Problem-solving skills, • Eco-fearlessness and eco-carefulness, • Empathy and friendship, and • Resiliency and independence. This program is five days a week from 9:15 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. An optional walking component will be available for children attending Christ Church Nursery School or Rye Presbyterian Nursery School in the afternoon.

An Open House about this program will be held on Saturday, November 4, 2017, at 10:00 a.m. Registration for the 2018 – 2019 school year will begin on Monday, November 6, 2017. P R O G R A M

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School’s Out Workshops and Vacation Camps

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hen school is closed for a day or a week, our workshops and vacation camps offer hands-on time outside and endless possibilities for adventure. Workshops and vacation camps are for children in preschool through fifth grade unless noted otherwise. Children should dress for the weather and bring lunch. Pre-registration required. $70/child per day members, $80/child per day non-members. See dates below for specific times.

September

Spooky Nature

How Much Can You Squeeze? Thursday, September 21: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Children will examine the life cycle of an apple and learn how it can be turned into sweet apple cider. They will get a first-hand look at the cidering process as they get up-close with the cider press, and learn how the machine works to crush, press, and squeeze the apples.

Creatures of the Night

Thursday, October 26: 11:15 a.m. – 3:15 p.m. (Elementary School Children Only) Witches use some pretty gross ingredients for their spells, and we are going to check each one out! We will flip logs looking for spiders, go to the pond in search of frogs, and spend some time in our mud kitchen creating our own concoctions in preparation for Halloween.

As They Fly South Friday, October 27: 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. (Preschool Children Only: 3.5 – 6 years)

Friday, September 22: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. As the days continue to shorten and the nights lengthen, our chance of seeing nocturnal animals increases. Children will learn about a few local nocturnal animals including owls, bats, and even Eyed Click-Beetles. We will take a walk to our pine forest in hopes of seeing a GreatHorned Owl asleep above. We will examine how animals see, hunt, and survive in dark hours of the night.

As animals begin to prepare for the winter season, children will learn how birds and butterflies begin their migration to warmer climates in order to survive the winter freeze. Children will examine the migration patterns of various bird species and monarch butterflies. They will learn what birds and butterflies do at each stop along the way and how these flying friends know it is time to head south for the season.

November Animal Elections Tuesday, November 7: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Join us on Election Day as we elect a Rye Nature Center animal president! We will learn about how animals adapt to their local environment, create campaign slogans about each candidate’s special strengths, and use the democratic process to vote for the strongest leader amongst them all.

October Campfire Nation Wednesday, October 18: 11:15 a.m. – 3:15 p.m. (Elementary School Children Only) Children will get a chance to use materials from nature and learn to build their own fire with the help of our staff. They will learn how to light a fire without any matches and what happens when the wood gets wet. The day will end with marshmallows and stories around the campfire. 6

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Why Does That Leaf Have Spikes? Friday, November 10: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Wait! Don’t touch that! Children will examine how plants have adapted to defend themselves from hungry predators. They will examine common local species including holly trees, wineberry bushes, catbrier, and many more.

December STEM Challenge Day Wednesday, December 27: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Put on your jacket and bundle up as we head out to our Con Edison STEM Challenge Course! Children will develop team-building skills as they work together to balance our whale watch, fit through our honeybee hive, and pump water through our log fume.

Water in Winter Thursday, December 28: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. What does our pond look like in the winter? Join us as we explore what occurs beneath the ice during the winter. Children will learn how frogs drop their body temperature and bury themselves in the mud beneath the pond to survive the cold.

All That Evergreen Friday, December 29: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. While most trees lose their leaves for the winter, there are a few that do not. Those are the evergreens! How do they do it? Children will learn the adaptions that allow evergreens to conserve water to survive during a white winter and collect samples of various evergreens including pine, spruce, and holly to examine and identify.

School’s Out Workshops and Vacation Camps February Winter Tracking Thursday, February 8: 11:15 a.m. – 3:15 p.m. (Elementary Children Only) Join us as we learn how to track animals in the winter. Footprints, scat, and broken nuts are all signs that an animal has been around. Learn which animals are active at the Nature Center all winter, and see if you can track them down in the woods.

Sweets for Your Sweet Tuesday, February 13: 11:15 a.m. – 3:15 p.m. (Elementary Children Only) Just in time for Valentine’s Day! Join us as we tap a tree and learn the process of making sweet maple syrup. Children will get a chance to visit the maple sugaring shed where they will try out our evaporator.

Dinosaurs at the RNC

Science Extravaganza Thursday, February 22: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

The Night Sky

Who can get ice to melt the fastest? Can you create your own tornado? Put on your lab coat, goggles, and thinking caps as we spend the day testing various science experiments and putting your chemistry skills to work!

Where is that Treasure Hidden? Friday, February 23: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. There is a treasure hidden in the Rye Nature Center woods. Children will learn to use a compass, read a map, and solve riddles in order to locate the treasure.

March Schooling Animals Friday, March 9: 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. (Preschool Children Only: 3.5 – 6 years)

Venture back to when dinosaurs roamed the earth. Children will learn to identify common dinosaurs by name and search for clues that dinosaurs once ruled Rye.

What makes animals stick together? How do fish know which way the school is swimming? What exactly do you call a group of skunks? Discover these answers and more when you meet animals and hike the Nature Center looking for animals that school together.

Glacier Nation

Wild Wings

Friday, February 16: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Tuesday, February 20: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Monday, March 19: 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. (Preschool Children Only: 3.5 - 6 years)

Was Rye once covered by a glacier? Join us as we search the ground for clues that Rye used to be covered in ice. Children will examine our rock formations and striations within the rocks to learn how Rye was once part of the ice age.

Who is faster, a cheetah or a goose? The answer might surprise you as we learn about animals that fly through the sky. Campers will get a chance to meet our dove, learn the secret of flight, and find out what rules the skies and what just flies!

Can You Survive in the Snow?

Cold-Blooded Wonders!

Wednesday, February 21: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. People have lived in the extreme cold for thousands of years. Children will venture outside to learn how to stay warm in the cold. From igloos to snow caves, we will explore how to make shelters in the winter.

April

Friday, March 30: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Campers will experience the wild world of amphibians and reptiles. Come meet our friendly snakes, frogs, and lizards as we learn where these critters come from and some of the amazing adaptations that help them survive! Children will look for snakes, salamanders, and turtles basking in the sun by our pond.

Monday, April 2: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Learn about distant stars and where we live in the Milky Way Galaxy. Children will be challenged to analyze sky charts from different times of the year by identifying constellations or connecting dots to make their own! We will create a night sky model and look at the planets within our own solar system.

Insect Central Tuesday, April 3: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Spend the day exploring the Rye Nature Center woods, turning logs, shaking trees, and sweeping shrubs in search of local insects. Find out which come out at night and which thrive during the day.

Water Goes Round Wednesday, April 4: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Today is all about streams, rivers, lakes, and oceans. Learn how our local watershed and the Blind Brook are connected to the water cycle and how we can take care of our water supply.

Burrow on Down Thursday, April 5: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. This day is all about the underground world hidden beneath our feet – visit the winding tunnels of a chipmunk burrow or perhaps get lost in the labyrinth known as an ant colony. Learn how foxes get the upper hand on rodents and even how trees and fungi can talk!

The Spring Buzz Friday, April 6: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. With the arrival of spring, our bees are out buzzing again. Learn about the intricate society in which bees live. Explore our indoor observation hive to get a good look at the queen bee as she lays her eggs – wear some of our beekeeper equipment and even try some of our delicious local honey.

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Daddy & Me Animal Show Fathers can drop-in with their children ages 3 to 7 years for this fun-filled animal adventure. All children must be accompanied by a caregiver. No pre-registration required. $10/family members, $15/family non-members.

Program begins at 9:15 a.m.

Program Dates: September 9 October 21 November 4 December 2 January 20

February 10 March 3 April 14 May 5

Mommy & Me (18 months – 4 year olds)

$10/family members, $15/family non-members.

Begins in September Join the Rye Nature Center team participating in the National Phenology Network’s (NPN) efforts to monitor the impact of climate change on plants. On Thursdays during seasonal periods of the year, our team notes various stages in plant development. For more information, visit https://www.usanpn.org/. Participants are expected to collect data at least twice a month from March-May and September-November.

Project Feederwatch Begins in October Training Session: Friday, October 28 at 9:30 a.m. If you are looking for a way to drink coffee and make contributions to science, then join the FRNC feederwatchers! Watch birds at the Nature Center feeder from November to April and submit the data to Project Feederwatch. For more information about Project Feederwatch visit http://feederwatch.org/about/ project-overview/. This training session will prepare you to watch on day one.

Saturday, February 17 at 9:00 a.m. The Great Backyard Bird Count will occur from Friday, February 16 through Monday, February 19. If you want to participate but don’t have your own feeder, or if you want to try it out before doing it yourself, then join FRNC staff to count the Nature Center’s birds. For more information about the Great Backyard Bird Count visit http://gbbc.birdcount.org/.

Begins Early March Believe it or not, the Blind Brook is home to many of these wriggling wonders! Eels are born in the Sargasso Sea and some of them are raised here in Rye. Help the naturalists at RNC gather data about our local population.

Program Dates: September: 18, 25 October: 2, 16, 23, 30 November: 6, 13, 20, 27 December: 4, 11, 18 January: 8, 22, 29 February: 5, 12, 26 March: 5, 12, 19, 26 April: 9, 16, 23, 30

Turtle Tracking Begins Early April Join FRNC staff in finding and tracking our resident box turtles! Help us add to over 30 years of data that has been collected on our box turtle population.

Pond Watch Help monitor the five major species of dragonflies that can be found in our ponds throughout the year. From first sights, to fall migrations we will be observing it all. For more information, visit http://www.migratorydragonflypartnership.org.

May: 7, 14, 21

G U I D E

Phenology

Eel Monitoring

Mondays 9:45 – 10:45 a.m.

P R O G R A M

Citizen science is conducted on a volunteer basis by amateur and nonprofessional scientists. At RNC there are a variety of citizen science programs available to interested participants. Please contact [email protected] for more information.

The Great Backyard Bird Count

Stop by this fun-filled hour with your little one. We’ll sing songs and meet animals as we learn about the natural world. Children must be accompanied by a caregiver. Drop-in class, no pre-registration required.

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Forest Kindergarten Ecology Club for Families with Special Needs

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his program uses Swiss concepts and the principles of place-based education to foster children’s connection with the natural world and nurture their curiosities. Children will learn the use of basic tools and how to make them out of natural materials, practice wilderness skills and foraging basics, and explore nature cultures and folk lore. Classes will be on Thursdays from 3:15 p.m. – 4:45 p.m. The class will be held entirely outside with the exception of extreme weather/thunderstorms. For more information and registration forms, visit www.ryenaturecenter.org

Fall Session – 10 Classes $400/child members, $475/child non-members

September: 14, 28 October: 5, 12, 19, 26

Children with special needs are invited to bring a family member or caregiver with them to the Nature Center to enjoy animal programs, hikes, and other fun science and sensory adventures. All children must be accompanied by an adult. For more information about this program e-mail [email protected] ryenaturecenter.org. Ecology club will be held on Saturdays, one per month in fall and spring from 3:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. There is no fee for this program, but pre-registration is required by the Friday prior to class.

Program Dates: September 23

March 17

October 21

April 21

November 18

May 19

November: 2, 9, 16, 30

Winter Session – 11 Classes $440/child members, $522/child non-members

December: 7, 14, 21 January: 4, 11, 18, 25 February: 1, 8, 15

Spring Session – 11 Classes $440/child members, $522/child non-members

March: 1, 8, 15, 22, 29 April: 12, 19, 26 May: 3, 10, 17, 24 P R O G R A M

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Family & Public Programs September

October

Family Campout

Naturalist in Your Neighborhood

Saturday, September 9 (5:00 p.m.) – Sunday, September 10 (9:00 a.m.) Back for another season! Stargazing, campfire stories, roasted marshmallows, and falling asleep under the stars to the calls of crickets and owls are on the agenda. This is the perfect way to introduce your spouse and children to the joys of the outdoors while still having a Starbucks within a five-minute drive. Includes dinner, breakfast, and a guided hike. Bring your own tent or borrow one of ours. Advanced registration required. This program is for members only. $40/person.

Coastal Clean-up Day

Friday, October 6th 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Show your town pride by helping Rye become the second Community Wildlife Habitat™ in the state of New York. Your role is to make your property more welcoming to wildlife and we can help. A Rye Nature Center naturalist will visit your property, identify weeds, wildlife needs, and offer suggestions on making your yard a Certified Wildlife Habitat™. Get your neighbors to do it too! Program free. Pre-registration required. Contact [email protected] for more information.

Oktoberfest

Saturday, September 16 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Friday, October 13 7:30 – 10:30 p.m.

Join us as we clean up the shore of our local brook. Pre-registration required. Contact [email protected] for more information. Suggested for ages 8 and up.

Join us for hops, vines, music, and delicious food at our annual fundraiser. For more information, email [email protected]

Hike & Seek Evening for 5th and 6th Graders Friday, September 29 5:00 – 6:30 p.m.

November Love ‘Em and Leave ‘Em: Leaf Mulching Workshop Friday, November 3 9:30 a.m. Join us for an interesting event on how to save money and make your yard healthy and beautiful. Hosted in conjunction with the Friends of the Rye Sustainability Committee, this free workshop is sponsored by Sustainable Westchester.

STEM Challenge Course Saturday, November 18 1:00 p.m. Join us for some team building using science, technology, engineering, and math on our Con Edison STEM Challenge Course. We will learn how a water pump works, collaborate with teammates to build earthquake-proof structures, and see who can cross our equilibrium shuffle the fastest. Suggested for ages 6 and up.

Join the FRNC team as we play a large, group-session of hide and seek in the FRNC forest. Children will be assigned to a team and work together to both hide and seek the other group. Dropoff program. Pre-registration required.

$5/person members, $8/person non-members.

$10/child.

Join an FRNC naturalist as we search for local turkeys in the forest. Suggested for ages 4 to 7.

Apple Cidering and Fall Hike Saturday, September 30 1:00 p.m. Families will learn about the cidering process, press some apples of their own, sample cider, and take a seasonal walk. Suggested for ages 4 to 7.

Turkey Hike Saturday, November 25 1:00 p.m.

$5/person members, $8/person non-members.

Mistletoe Magic Sunday, November 26 12:00 – 3:00 p.m. Join us downtown to celebrate the start of the joyous holiday season.

$5/person members, $8/person non-members.

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Family & Public Programs December

February

Science of Snowflakes

Old-Fashioned Winter’s Afternoon

Saturday, December 9 1:00 p.m.

Every crystal of snow that falls from the sky is unique in its own way. Join FRNC staff to explore how the snow falling from the sky forms, and make your own “snow” and snowflakes! Suggested for ages 5 and up. $5/person members, $8/person non-members.

Candle Making Saturday, December 16 1:00 p.m. Join us as we create wonderful decorations for the holiday season. Children and families will get to make their own colorful candles that can be used during the holidays or all year round. $5/person members, $8/person non-members.

January Winter Tracking Saturday, January 27 1:00 p.m. Even though it is cold outside, some creatures in our forest are as active as ever! Join us as we explore the forests and fields of Rye Nature Center for evidence of animals moving about. We will make our own tracking guides for you to take home and see what type of animals might be around your house. Suggested for ages 4 and up. $5/person members, $8/person non-members.

Saturday, February 3 12:00 – 3:00 p.m. A traditional, favorite event in Rye! Log sawing contest, fire-roasted marshmallows, hikes, maple sugaring and fun crafts will warm everyone up. All ages welcome! Punch cards available for purchase. Cash only.

Maple Sugaring Saturday, February 10 and 24 1:00 p.m. Tap a tree the old fashioned way! Learn about how maple trees produce sap and get a peek at the sugaring process in the Rye Nature Center’s own sugar shed. Please call to reserve your places. $10/family members, $15/family non-members.

April Earth Art Club Saturday, April 21 1:00 p.m. Join us as we celebrate Earth Day! An FRNC naturalist will lead a short hike to collect a few natural artifacts including forsythia and daffodil flowers. Our naturalist will help guide young artists to create a piece of natural art. Suggested for ages 4 and up. $5/person members, $8/person non-members.

March

Naturalist in Your Neighborhood

Animals that Lay Eggs

Friday, April 27 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Saturday, March 17 1:00 p.m. Join an FRNC Naturalist as we learn about animals who lay eggs in the spring. We will learn about the life cycles of local animals including birds, frogs, and salamanders. Suggested for ages 5 and up. $5/person members, $8/person non-members.

Mud Camouflage Saturday, March 24 1:00 p.m.

Show your town pride by helping Rye become the second Community Wildlife Habitat™ in the state of New York. Your role is to make your property more welcoming to wildlife and we can help. A Rye Nature Center naturalist will visit your property, identify weeds, wildlife needs, and offer suggestions on making your yard a Certified Wildlife Habitat™. Get your neighbors to do it too! Program free. Pre-registration required. Contact [email protected] for more information.

Get ready to play in the mud! Learn about different types of mud and clay, and get ready to use a variety of colors to camouflage yourself into the forest. Make sure to wear clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty, and bring a change of clothes for the trip home. Suggested for ages 5 and up.

Miners 101

$5/person members, $8/person non-members.

$5/person members, $8/person non-members.

Saturday, April 28 1:00 p.m. Take a peek inside the earth and see what Rye is really made of at the RNC Quarry. Suggested for ages 7 and up.

For more information on our programs, please visit ryenaturecenter.org P R O G R A M

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Family & Public Programs May

needles. We will also learn to tie basic knots with natural twine to make our “forts” and hide in them to spy on wildlife. Suggested for ages 7 and up.

Hike & Seek Evening for 5th and 6th Graders

$5/person members, $8/person non-members.

Friday, May 4 5:00 – 6:30 p.m. Join FRNC’s team as we play a large, group-session of hide and seek in the FRNC forest. Children will be assigned to a team and work together to both hide and seek the other group. Dropoff program. Pre-registration required. $10/child.

Shelter Building Saturday, May 12 1:00 p.m. Make a teepee and lean-to using all natural materials from the forest like tulip bark, oak branches, and pine

Native Plant Garden Tour Saturday, May 19 1:00 p.m. Do you love spending time in nature and want to learn more about your local environment? Rye Nature Center’s Native Garden is just the place to test your knowledge and learn more about indigenous plant life. From mountain mint to twinleaf you will be leaving with an understanding of which plants thrive around us and why. Suggested for ages 8 and up. $5/person members, $8/person non-members.

June Family Campout Saturday, June 2 (5:00 p.m.) – Sunday, June 3 (9:00 a.m.) Stargazing, campfire stories, roasted marshmallows, and falling asleep under the stars to the calls of crickets and owls are on the agenda. This is the perfect way to introduce your spouse and children to the joys of the outdoors while still having a Starbucks within a five-minute drive. Includes dinner, breakfast, and a guided hike. Bring your own tent or borrow one of ours. Advanced registration required. This program is for members only. Limited Space. Suggested for ages 5 and up. $40/person.

Wilderness Encounters 1st through 3rd Grade Take the next step in your naturalist education! This immersive outdoor program challenges participants to use imagination, energy, tools, and teamwork in order to better understand our local woodlands. This program is ideal for former Preschool Ecology and Forest Kindergarten participants as well as children who just want to be outdoors! Classes will be held on Tuesdays from 3:15 – 4:45 p.m. The class will be held entirely outside with the exception of extreme weather/thunderstorms. For more information and registration forms, visit www.ryenaturecenter.org.

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Fall Session 10 Classes

Winter Session 10 Classes

Spring Session 11 Classes

$400/child members, $475/child non-members

$400/child members, $475/child non-members

$440/child members, $522/child non-members

September: 19, 26 October: 3, 10, 17, 24, 31 November: 14, 21, 28

December: 5, 12, 19 January: 9, 16, 23, 30 February: 6, 13, 27

March: 6, 13, 20, 27 April: 10, 17, 24 May: 1, 8, 15, 22

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riends of Rye Nature Center’s Access Fund supports outreach programs for people who have little access to nature. Proceeds from this year’s benefit event will support all our education programs including:

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• Summer camp for students from the Inner-City Scholarship Fund: Annually, we provide two weeks of camp for students from the Inner-City Scholarship Fund, an organization devoted to educating children in Manhattan’s poorest communities. Over 120 students will attend camp this August at our beautiful nature preserve, at no cost. Since its inception, your support has provided nearly 1,000 children with the opportunity to be outdoors, learn about nature, and have fun. • Gardening programs for senior citizens and low-income women: Our workshops for the White Plains YWCA and The Osborn allow these residents to regularly experience the benefits of interacting with nature. With your support, we will bring a love of gardening to 100 new people this year.

BENEFIT

Please join us in the garden of 

• Nature and science education for minority students: Collaborative programs with organizations like Carver Center and Head Start allow our educators to bring hands-on experiences to students who need more exposure to science and nature. In 2017, we educated over 250 diverse students.

M A S A N D M A R Y J U L I• OAutdoor N experiences for disabled adults: We foster a conFRIDAY, MAY 12

th

6:30 - 9:00 pm

nection to nature through seasonal, outdoor opportunities for visiting groups from Westchester ARC and Cerebral Palsy of Westchester. Over the course of a year, we provide nearly 30 weeks of programing.

5 BELMONT AVENUE RYE, NY 10580

Save the Date!

Our annual benefit will be on May 18, 2018.

r Nature Access Fund Benefit as we celebrate 10th Anniversary of our summer camp for Inner-City Scholarship Fund students. Festive attire, garden shoes... RSVP by May 5th To donate to Friends of Rye Nature Center’s Access Fund, please visit ryenaturecenter.org P R O G R A M

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Save the Date! October 6, 2017

Fall Birdseed Orders Due

October 13, 2017

Oktoberfest

October 20, 2017

Fall Birdseed Pickup

November 4, 2017

Forest Preschool 2018–2019 Open House

November 6, 2017

Forest Preschool Registration Begins

January 6, 2018

June Bugs Registration Begins

January 10, 2018

Preschool Ecology Registration Begins

January 12, 2018

Summer Camp Registration Begins

February 2, 2018

Winter Birdseed Orders Due

February 3, 2018

Old-Fashioned Winter’s Afternoon

February 16, 2018

Winter Birdseed Pickup

May 18, 2018

Nature Access Fund Benefit

Become a Friend of the Rye Nature Center To become a member, please fill out the registration form, attach your check or money order, and mail it to Friends of Rye Nature Center, 873 Boston Post Road, Rye NY 10580. New Member

Membership Levels

Name

Environmentalist*

Address

$100

City/State/Zip

Conservationist $250

Phone

Forester

Email

$500

Please make your check payable to Friends of Rye Nature Center.

Friend $1,000

My company matching gift form is enclosed.

Patron

Friends of Rye Nature Center is a non-profit educational organization under the Internal Revenue Service Code 501(c)(3). Your contribution is tax deductible within the limits provided by the law.

$2,500

Special Gift

*Discounts on classes and camps begin at this level. **Early registration privileges to Nature Center events, June Bugs, Summer Camp and programs.

$________

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Register Today!

FRIEN 873 B RYE,

Rye Nature Center Program Registration Follow these three easy steps to ensure your place in most of our quickly-filling programs. Please complete a separate form for each child. 1. Please indicate what program you’re registering for and completely fill out one form for each child. 2. Write a check or money order payable to “Friends of Rye Nature Center.” If paying by cash, please stop by the Center to pay in person. 3. Mail or drop off your completed registration form and payment. Rye Nature Center is located at 873 Boston Post Road, Rye, NY 10580.

Program Name

Program Time

Program Date(s)

Fee

Child’s Name

Birth Date

Age

Parent’s Name Address City/State/Zip Daytime Phone

Cell Phone

Email Emergency Contact Name

Contact Phone

Allergies/Special Needs

Our gr trails a playgro are op daily fr dawn t Come

Amount Enclosed

For Office Use Only Paid $

Cash or Check #

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FRIENDS OF RYE NATURE CENTER 873 BOSTON POST ROAD RYE, NY 10580

O U R G R O U N D S, Our grounds, T R A I L S, AND trails and PL AY G R O U N D playground A R E open O PE N are D A I LYfrom FROM daily D AW N to T Odusk. D US K . dawn C O M E Vvisit! I SI T ! Come

Making Friends with Winter’s Birds Eli Schaffer, Environmental Educator

Often we think of winter as a time when local wildlife either find a cozy place to hibernate or migrate south. However, on the other side of our frostcovered windows, a diverse community thrives despite the cold. Although many local birds like tanagers and humming birds do migrate for the winter, several others like Carolina wrens and mourning doves stay put throughout the cold season. In addition, some feathered friends who summer in Canada choose our backyards as the ideal spot to winter.

American goldfinch eating from Eli’s hand

the gaze of a predator such as a hawk. For my eleventh attempt, I changed my approach, and donned some sunglasses. After just over ten-minutes of waiting, a black-capped chickadee hopped from the wire supporting our feeders down to my hand. She quickly grabbed a seed and flew back to the safety of her perch. The next time, two black-capped chickadees came to feed. Soon after, three landed on my hands and fed. After dive-bombing me to ensure I was not some predator in elaborate disguise, a beautiful male American goldfinch came and perched on my finger. I was fully expecting the typical momentary grab of a seed, however this goldfinch stayed on my hand gorging itself for over three straight minutes! He fed for so long, he even allowed me to turn my head so that I could see him straight on. What an experience!

I took advantage of this close observation period, and tried to feed the wild birds of the Rye Nature Center from my hand. I was warned that it would take time to gain the trust of such cautious A snapshot of winter bird diversity can creatures, but that it could be done. be observed at any well-stocked feeder. Intrigued, I began standing ten to Remember to offer a variety of seed twenty minutes beneath our feeders, types and suet, provide a birdbath, and hands full of birdseed. I stood outside Hand-feeding birds does not harm scatter some seed on the ground for on ten different days, palms filled with sparrows and doves. Feeder position is seeds, and the birds still refused to take them and allows for an interactive, rewarding experience. When you are at important too: it should be high enough the free meal I was offering. I noticed a pattern during this period. the Nature Center, let us know if you’d that it is out of reach of neighborhood cats and either close to a window (<3’) Every time I shifted my eyes to look like to try to feed the birds and we’ll give or far away (>30’) so that window at them, the birds would fly away, you a handful of seed! instinctually recoiling they would Join on October 13 for hops,asvines, andatdelicious eats. collisions are less likely to beus lethal.

For more information, email [email protected] or call 914.967.5150