Our Volunteers Rock!

SNOW DID NOT STOP US!  Did you know Martin Luther King Day was also a “National Day Of Service”?  In recognition of this day, we were joined by over 20 volunteers and restoration specialist, Dave Eubanks, for our restoration workday at our Far Field Nature Preserve.  We removed, cut and burned buckthorn and other invasive woody species from the site.

Volunteers were supplied with work gloves, loppers and goggles and we had several bonfires to keep folks warm.  These uber volunteers, cleared enough buckthorn and other invasive species to keep three large piles of debris burning for two hours.

National Day of Service Group of Volunteers

Volunteers help with buckthorn removal at Far Field Nature Preserve

With the help of our volunteers, this preserve is well on its way to returning to its natural state.  Previously, we have also had volunteers help with clearing the land, seeding with natives and planting of over 50 oak trees. The Far Field Nature Preserve is located at County Line (Lake Cook Road) and Old Sutton Roads in Barrington Hills.

For more information on buckthorn and the adverse impact it has on native plant species, read the Bluestem Ecological Services article below to find out why this invader must be removed in order to make the surrounding plants and trees thrive.

LET IT SNOW! Come And Join Us, Snowing Or Not, We Will Still Be Hosting The “National Day Of Service” Volunteer Opportunity At Far Field Nature Preserve

A LITTLE SNOW WON’T STOP US!  Remember to dress for the weather.  Did you know Martin Luther King Day is also a “National Day Of Service”?  Join us at our next restoration workday, Monday, January 15th from 12:00pm to 2:00pm at our Far Field Nature Preserve.  We will be removing and burning buckthorn and other invasive woody species from the site.

Cutting and burning buckthorn

Cutting and burning buckthorn at Far Field Nature Preserve

We will supply work gloves, loppers and goggles and there will be a bonfire to keep folks warm.  If you have your own equipment, please bring it along as we can always use extra.  The Far Field Nature Preserve is located at County Line (Lake Cook Road) and Old Sutton Roads in Barrington Hills.  The entrance to the site is off of Old Sutton Road.

Please feel free to bring a friend(s) and remember to dress appropriately for the weather.  If you have not volunteered with us before, please take a few minutes to fill out our volunteer form here.

For more information on buckthorn and the adverse impact it has on native plant species, read the Bluestem Ecological Services article below to find out why this invader must be removed in order to make the surrounding plants and trees thrive.

Our Next Project: Overseeding of 5.6 Acres At Pederson Preserve

 The Barrington Area Conservation Trust will be working with students from Barrington High School and local scout troops on a large-scale seeding project at Pederson Nature Preserve, Lake Cook and Hart Roads in Barrington, on November 19 from 10:00 a.m. – noon. The public is invited to help disperse 47.6 pounds of pollinator seed mix at the 5.6 acre parcel of land, which is adjacent to Flint Creek and across from Barrington High School.  Wear appropriate clothing and shoes and remember to bring your own water. 
Funding for the project is provided in part from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation, and the Barrington Junior Women’s Club, as well as donor designated gifts.  Click here for the volunteer release form.
SPONSORED BY:
 

Join Us For Our OakTober Family Fest

Join us for our 2nd annual FREE OakTober Family Fest at Far Field Nature Preserve in Barrington Hills located at Lake Cook and Old Sutton roads.  This is event is free and will include child friendly activities, tree planting, music, bonfires and S’mores.  Last year this event brought a large crowd of families, friends and supporters of the BACT and a great time was had by all.  Bring the whole family and remember to wear suitable shoes and to dress accordingly as we will have this event rain or shine!  If you have any questions please feel free to call our offices at 847.387.3149, visit our facebook page or check back here for any updates.

Far Field Nature Preserve

Sunday, October 6, 2017

1:00pm-3:00pm

Free and open to the public

 

Summer 2018 – Schaumburg Urban Monarch Technician Opportunity

Over the last two decades, the monarch population has decreased by 80 percent and experts now agree that a key threat to the species is the loss of milkweed plants across the Midwestern United States.  This summer the Field Museum’s Monarch Project will expand on its existing research with the help of volunteers.  The volunteer ecological technician will collect one season of local field data using established protocol.

This volunteer position will implement intensive monitoring of monarch butterfly habitat at selected sites throughout Schaumburg. This individual will be trained by staff from the Field Museum.  A total of six (6) applicants will be chosen for this project.

CLICK HERE for application information, qualifications and duties related to this wonderful summer position.  This Ecological Fieldwork Technician position is being offered in partnership with the Field Museum, The Village of Schaumburg and BACT.

We Welcome Our 2017 Summer Interns

Our first group of 2017 interns began their work today!  Susan Lenz our Director of Community Engagement is planning and supervising this program this year.

She had the interns begin their day by planting milkweed and will have them participating in stream monitoring later in the week.  Please check back here and on our Facebook page, Instagram and Twitter this week for updates on the progress these students are making.

Summer Is Here And Eagle Scout Projects Are Underway

We have several Boy Scouts working on their Eagle Scout projects this summer.  They are doing this under the direction of our uber volunteer Anne Hay. Anne first
became involved in scouting when her boys belonged to the Queens Scouts in England. She helped out again when her boys joined Boy Scouts here in the States.  She is currently supervising 3 scouts with 3 different projects working on their Eagle Scout badge.
Jack Rose– Working at Pederson Preserve moving native plants to make a potential bike parking area.
Nick Foster – Working at Barcley Woods clearing buckthorn to extend a walking trail.
Chris Chien– Working on installing a fire pit and building benches at Far Field for use at BACT events.
               
 Many thanks to Anne and the scouts for all their hard work!
For more information on our Eagle Scout programs, to volunteer or to donate, please contact Emily at emily@bactrust.org or visit our website at www.bactrust.org.

Outdoor Meditation With Anita Maher Is Sold Out!

THIS EVENT HAS SOLD OUT!  We are planning another meditation event this Fall of 2017 so like and follow our Facebook page for information on all of our events or check back here for further updates!

Join us Sunday morning, May 28th from 10:00am-12:00pm to experience an outdoor meditation session in a beautiful wooded setting.  Anita Maher, Meditation and Yoga Specialist will be leading this event at a wooded preserve that is rarely open to the public and is a little piece of paradise in Barrington Hills.  All levels are welcome.  Please bring water and a mat.

Spots are limited.  Reservations are required.  

Members – Free | Non-members $15.00.   Contact Emily at emily@bactrust.org or call our office at 847-387-3149 to reserve your spot.

 

Join Us For An Outdoor Meditation Session With Anita Maher

white oakJoin us Sunday morning, May 28th from 10:00am-12:00pm to experience an outdoor meditation session in a beautiful wooded setting.  Anita Maher, Meditation and Yoga Specialist will be leading this event at a wooded preserve that is rarely open to the public and is a little piece of paradise in Barrington Hills.  All levels are welcome.  Please bring water and a mat.

Spots are limited.  Reservations are required.  

Members – Free | Non-members $15.00.   Contact Emily at emily@bactrust.org or call our office at 847-387-3149 to reserve your spot.

MEMBERS ARE FREE with reservation  NON-MEMBERS PAY THROUGH PAYPAL BELOWTHIS TICKET IS NON-REFUNDABLE!

Non-member ticket price per person

 

BHS Student Essay: The Effects of Meditation, Mindfulness and Nature

By:  Audrey Li

In the midst of a seemingly never-ending to-do list, it is important to allot time to yourself to meditate and become more aware of your surroundings.  It is easy to be on autopilot and to become invested in the plethora of tasks you have to complete: it may seem almost inconvenient for you to stop for a moment and to take a break. These past few weeks have been incredibly difficult for me since it was comprised of ultra-high stress levels, standardized testing, and AP testing. While I did have study breaks, I felt guilty for not working to accomplish my tasks and for partaking on a short escape from reality.  It was then that I realized the utmost necessity of taking a break and putting my current tasks on hold.

It is absolutely vital to meditate or to set aside some time for yourself to reflect on your life, completely free of guilt.  I am currently taking a gym class at Barrington High School called Fit for Females.  This class has really made me look forward to Friday mornings because Fridays are dedicated to achieving mindfulness through meditation and yoga.  We are privileged with being given the entire class period to lie down and listen to guided meditations or peaceful meditation music.  I can distinctly recall one Friday in which I was so relieved to finally have forty minutes to myself, completely void of obligations, and to reflect on a particularly difficult week.  My teacher read aloud some guided meditation and she reminded us that we constantly say, “I love you” to our family and friends, but she posed the ultimate question: “How often do you express love for yourself?”  Following the meditation and walking to my next class, I felt rejuvenated.  The meditation session was incredibly cathartic and had imbued me with a great amount of motivation and inspiration to go about the rest of my day.  I realized that although these optimistic feelings were not everlasting, it was pleasurable to hold onto these feelings for even just a short time.

Upon receiving this article assignment, I took it upon myself to consciously spend more time with myself, whether it is indoors or surrounded by the inexhaustible beauty of nature.  Unfortunately, Mother Nature decided to throw rainy weather at me just as I was about to embark on my daily meditation routine.  I desired to venture out of my comfort zone and meditate in the rain on a Saturday afternoon.  To be completely honest, my initial thoughts upon going outside were to go back inside because it was cold and windy.  Despite these desires, I decided to continue with my meditation.  I began to take notice of the trees that that were swaying back and forth and the vastness of the sky.  I contemplated about how this time next year I will be committed to a college and transend familiarity on the new chapter of my life.  This meditation in the rain made me realize that despite feelings of insecurities, unhappiness, or disappointment, nature will continue to exist and the trees that extend beyond my deck will continue to sway back and forth, regardless of my current troubles, which certainly impelled me to put matters in perspective.

Make meditation a part of your daily life because although the positive feelings it will bring you afterwards are ephemeral, mediation will become a constant in your life and help you feel more confident with your inner self.  Through meditation, you will become more acquainted with yourself because meditation enables you to reflect on your thoughts and gives you an opportunity to embrace your inner confidence and allow negative feelings to, at least, temporarily subside.  I don’t believe there is an ultimate cure for happiness, but meditation does serve as a portal to an alternative dimension away from reality for the time being.  I have noticed that every time I immerse myself in nature and truly look at what is in front of me, I feel more in touch with myself and become less concerned with how others perceive me.  I hope that after reading this article, you feel inclined to dedicate more time to yourself and to make more of an effort to spend less time looking down at technology and more time being surrounded by nature.

 

Earth Day: How Did It Begin and How Can You Help Celebrate It Year Round?

By Audrey Li

We just celebrated Earth Day with a planting and work day at our Pederson Preserve in Barrington.  High school students and adult volunteers came out to help clean up brush and buckthorn and to plant seedlings grown by the Horticultural Department at the high school.  Why is Earth Day such an important day?  Let’s look at how and why it began.

Prior to the first Earth Day, maintaining and protecting earth’s natural resources was not regarded as a priority.  Factories released pollutants into the air and only a minute portion of the American population engaged in the practice of recycling.  Gaylord Nelson, a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, was the founder of the first Earth Day.  The 1962 publication of Rachel Carson’s book, Silent Spring, which boosted public awareness for the environment, the 1969 massive oil spill in Santa Barbara, California, and a 1969 fire on Cleveland’s Cuyahoga River, are among the plethora of factors that led to Senator Nelson’s orchestration of the first Earth Day, which he believed was a crucial step in creating an influential environmental movement.

Senator Nelson decided to launch Earth Day on April 22, 1970 to bring attention and awareness to the public about our fragile environment.  He did this with the help of staff, Congressman McCloskey and Dennis Hayes, the national coordinator of the first Earth Day. He chose that day because it landed between Spring Break and exams for college students and was before summer break for high school students thus allowing them to participate.  According to reports in the Baltimore Magazine, 20 million people participated in the first Earth Day events and more than 1,500 colleges and universities and 10,000 grade schools and high schools participated in rallies and speeches held around the country.  Congress even went into recess that day in acknowledgement of the first Earth Day.

This massive success of the first Earth Day also led to the creation of many vital pieces of environmental legislation in the 1970’s, such as the Clean Air Act, the Water Quality Improvement Act, the Toxic Substances Control Act, the Endangered Species Act, and the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act.  The Environmental Protection Agency was also started in December of 1970 in response to Earth Day.  In 1995, Senator Nelson was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom for founding Earth Day and for his efforts to raise awareness of the conservation of the earth.

How can you help celebrate Earth Day year round?  Partake in little actions to protect the earth, be mindful of your water usage, reduce your carbon footprint, make your home more energy efficient, and as we are approaching the summer months, go on more outdoor walks and feel at one with nature.

You cannot get through a single day without having on impact on the world around you.  What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.”

Jane Goodall

Join Us for our Annual Meeting, April 18, 2017 Featuring Guest Speaker Doug Tallamy, Renowned Entomologist and Native Plant Advocate

On Tuesday, April 18 from 7:00-9:00 p.m. we will be hosting speaker Doug Tallamy, a noted entomologist, native plant advocate and author.  This “guru” in the insect and nature world will center his talk around the plight of butterflies and other insects and how each of us can help these important pollinators by supporting biodiversity in our backyards and open spaces.  His research goal is to better understand the many ways insects interact with plants and how such interactions determine the diversity of animal communities.

“We can save nature,” says Tallamy, “but only if we learn to live with nature.” Tallamy suggests each of us can play a role by saving biodiversity where we live.

Doug Tallamy is a professor in the Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware.  He has authored 85 research publications and two books – Bringing Nature Home:How Native Plants Sustain Wildlife in Our Gardens and The Living Landscape, (co-authored with Rick Darke). Tallamy is a regular columnist for Garden Design Magazine and his awards include the Garden Club of America Margaret Douglas Medal for Conservation and the Tom Dodd, Jr. Award of Excellence.

We encourage anyone interested to attend.  There will be a cash bar.  Tickets are free to BACT members, $15.00 to non-members.  Members please e-mail Emily at emily@bactrust.org to reserve your spot.  Non-members, please follow the link below to purchase your ticket.

 

Ticket price per person

Join now and attend for free!

 

Memberships