Earth Week Activities

BACT joined thousands of others worldwide to celebrate Earth Day on Friday April 22.

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Thank you to all of the volunteers who joined us at Pederson Preserve located  across from Barrington High School on Earth Day.

Over 30 volunteers met to plant 2000 echinacea seedlings and gather two garbage bins of debris from the road side.   The seedlings, grown by BHS horticulture classes in the school greenhouse this winter, were gently planted in pre-drilled holes and tenderly covered with compost and water.  These new seedlings will give way to a spectacular display of native flowers adding to the beauty of this preserve which has been undergoing restoration efforts since its purchase in 2011.

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A mother duck out for a swim in the creek seemed to look upon work day efforts with pleasure.

Restoration of the property’s native landscape would not be successful without the countless hours of volunteer help before, during, and after an event such as Earth Day.  Many thanks to the teachers and students at BHS for their time and efforts, to community members who graciously volunteer, and to Dick Lamkey and his crew for preparing the area for planting,

It takes a community team to preserve our community’s rare and exceptional open spaces for current and future generations.  Thank you to our community volunteers!

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On Saturday, April 16, as an extension of BACT Conservation@School program, students, families, and volunteers kicked off Earth Week with outdoor activities focused on citizen scientist stream monitoring on the portion of Flint Creek located on the BHS campus.  Awareness of the health of the stream and the subsequent impact on our local environment has been addressed through Conservaton@School with BHS horticulture and environmental science classes and was the focus of the day’s events.  Participants cleared the stream of buckthorn and removed garbage which included a rusty grocery cart, chair, tires and more

Photo by Bob Lee.

Photo by Bob Lee.

One participant, a retired sixth grade science teacher, commented that her opportunity for hands on learning in Flint Creek when she was a BHS student in the 70’s inspired her pursuit of teaching science!  She volunteered in order to be with like minded people who care about nature, stating “she feels really good when she gets out and helps with restoration”.

Another participant, a three year old boy from Barrington who attended with his Dad, wanted “to work” after learning about watersheds, fish, and bugs through the education activities.  He was provided the smallest size goggles and a pair of loppers.  He cut buckthorn saplings and said upon leaving, “I learned that buckthorn is bad and oak trees are good”.

2016FamFieldDay4The success of Family Field Day was measured not only by the amount of garbage and buckthorn removed, but by the comments from participants such as these.

Many thanks to National Great Rivers Research and Education Center and Jim Bland for their assistance with the stream monitoring activities.  Also, thank you to all volunteers who worked so hard to make a difference in the health of the stream including BHS, Prairie and Station Middle Schools, St. Viator students, Barrington Junior Explorers Post 21, and families and individuals from the community.