April 19: Community Stewardship Workday

16 Apr

P1010572

Come out to Rainbow Beach Dunes this Saturday to clean up trash in the nature area, and start this season’s invasive species hunt. We’ll begin by looking for cheatgrass. We’ll also look for the earliest flowering species at the dunes: arctic bearberry and sand dune rockcress!

Join us this Saturday April 19 from 10am-12pm.

Remember to prepare for the weather and terrain: it may be windy and wet. Sturdy shoes, long pants and water are recommended. Tools, training, and snacks will be provided. Contact Alison Anastasio at alison.anastasio@gmail.com for questions and to RSVP.

Rainbow Beach Park runs parallel to South Shore Drive from 75th-79th Streets. By foot, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St. By car, you can only access the park at the southern end.
From the north/west, follow Hwy 41 east as it splits from South Shore Drive at 79th St. Turn left into the park at Farragut.
From the south, follow Hwy 41 north and turn right on Farragut, just before  the intersection of 79th/South Shore.
Once in the park, go past the stop sign and water filtration plant and turn right at the next opportunity. Go to the southeast end of this lot and park. Meet at the entrance to the Nature Area, the which is located at the southern end of the beach (look for the banner!).

*Mark your calendar*
Saturday May 17 (not 5/24) – Community Stewardship Workday
Saturday June 28 – Community Stewardship Workday
Saturday July 26 – Community Stewardship Workday

RB_Flyer041914

Goodbye 2013; hello 2014

25 Mar

We sent our stewardship activities on winter break after our last workday of 2013, October 26.

Volunteers collected seeds from healthy little bluestem populations in the center of the nature area and dispersed them in the developing area on the east end.

P1020078 P1020077

 

We started up again just last weekend, with volunteers collecting 4 big bags of trash! We’re ready to start the year with a clean slate.

P1020274 P1020281 P1020282 P1020286

 

 

March 22: Community Stewardship Workday

17 Mar

P1020246

Come out to Rainbow Beach Dunes this Saturday for the first workday of 2014! The dunes are laying low: grasses matted down from heavy snow, frozen wetlands, and a huge ice shelf on the lake. The only thing green out there is moss, drenched with snowmelt.

We’ll survey the effects of winter and pick up trash that has been tossed on shore and blown into the nature area.   Join us this Saturday March 22 from 10am-12pm.

Remember to prepare for the weather and terrain: it will be cold and windy! Sturdy shoes, long pants and water are recommended. Tools, equipment, and snacks will be provided. Contact Alison Anastasio at alison.anastasio@gmail.com for questions and to RSVP.

Rainbow Beach Park runs parallel to South Shore Drive from 75th-79th Streets. By foot, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St. By car, you can only access the park at the southern end.
From the north/west, follow Hwy 41 east as it splits from South Shore Drive at 79th St. Turn left into the park at Farragut.
From the south, follow Hwy 41 north and turn right on Farragut, just before  the intersection of 79th/South Shore.
Once in the park, go past the stop sign and water filtration plant and turn right at the next opportunity. Go to the southeast end of this lot and park. Meet at the entrance to the Nature Area, the which is located at the southern end of the beach (look for the banner!).

*Mark your calendar*
Saturday April 19 (not 4/26) – Community Stewardship Workday/Earth Day celebration
Saturday May 17 (not 5/24) – Community Stewardship Workday
Saturday June 28 – Community Stewardship Workday

RB_Flyer032214

2014 Community Stewardship Workdays

9 Mar

P1020081

Join us from 10am-12pm  on (usually) the 4th Saturday of the month from March to October to watch Rainbow Beach Dunes change throughout the year. We typically clean up trash, pull weeds, plant native plants, disperse native seeds, or collect native seeds.

March 22 (if there is still snow on the ground, postponed until 3/29)

April 19 (not 4/26)

May 17 (not 5/24)

June 28

July 26

August 23

September 27

October 25

Henry Chandler Cowles and the ecological theory of succession

24 Nov

When I lead stewardship work at Rainbow Beach Dunes, I speak often but briefly about Henry Chandler Cowles and his important contribution to understanding the dune ecosystems of southern Lake Michigan. Victor Cassidy (who I had the pleasure of meeting at the centennial celebration of the International Phytogeograpic Excursion earlier this year) wrote a terrific and highly recommended book about him: Henry Chandler Cowles: Pioneer Ecologist. You should read this.

But in the mean time, have a look at his 2007 article from Chicago Wilderness Magazine.

Henry Chandler Cowles:
Ecologist, Teacher, Conservationist

By Victor M. Cassidy

Through his life and work, he prefigured today’s conservation movement–and Chicago Wilderness.

Cowels
Photos courtesy of the University of Chicago Library, Special Collections Research Center, University Department of Botany Records

On April 25, 1896, Henry Chandler Cowles visited the Indiana Dunes for the first time. “We climbed up the wonderful piles of sand and saw acres and acres stretching up and down the lake, billowy like a prairie or vast drifts of snow,” the University of Chicago graduate student wrote in his diary. “The sand dune flora is very characteristic and new to me.”

(READ MORE)

October 26: Community Stewardship Workday

22 Oct

Come out to Rainbow Beach Dunes this Saturday to see how plants and insects on the beach prepare for winter. We’ll collect and disperse seeds from little bluestem and take a nature walk.   Join us this Saturday October 26 from 10am-12pm.

Remember to prepare for the weather and terrain: there is no shade in the hilly, uneven dunes area and it’s windy by the lake. Sturdy shoes, long pants and water are recommended. Tools and equipment will be provided. Contact Alison Anastasio at alison.anastasio@gmail.com for questions and to RSVP.

Rainbow Beach Park runs parallel to South Shore Drive from 75th-79th Streets. By foot, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St. By car, you can only access the park at the southern end.
From the north/west, follow Hwy 41 east as it splits from South Shore Drive at 79th St. Turn left into the park at Farragut.
From the south, follow Hwy 41 north and turn right on Farragut, just before  the intersection of 79th/South Shore.
Once in the park, go past the stop sign and water filtration plant and turn right at the next opportunity. Go to the southeast end of this lot and park. Meet at the entrance to the Nature Area, the which is located at the southern end of the beach (look for the banner!).

*Mark your calendar*
Saturday November 24 – last workday of the year!

RB_Flyer102613

Recent workday photos

22 Oct

Autumn is a great time of year to collect seeds from native plants at the dunes because so many bloom in the summer time.

We’ve been collecting:
Dalea purpurea - purple prairie clover

P1000218P1010993


Liatris aspera
- rough blazing star

IMG_6570 P1010986

Monarda fistulosa – wild bergamot

P1000205 P1010920

Volunteers came from the South Shore neighborhood, Chicago Cares, Gary Comer College Prep, and elsewhere in Chicago.

September 28: National Public Lands Day

23 Sep

P1010951

Join friends, neighbors and other volunteers at Rainbow Beach Dunes this Saturday September 28 from 10am-12pm. The native grasses have started turned crimson and there are seeds of all species ready to be collected throughout the site. Along with volunteers across the country, we’ll be good stewards of our local natural area!

Remember to prepare for the weather and terrain: there is no shade in the hilly, uneven dunes area and it’s windy by the lake. Sturdy shoes, long pants and water are recommended.

Rainbow Beach is located at 3111 E. 77th St. By foot, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St. By car, enter from 79th St., turn left at the fence/T-intersection, go into the park, past the water filtration plant, and park in the first parking lot. Please meet at the entrance to the nature area, which is located at the southern end of the beach (look for the banner!). Tools and equipment will be provided. Contact Alison Anastasio at alison.anastasio@gmail.com for questions and to RSVP.

RB_Flyer092813

August 25: Community Stewardship Workday

22 Aug

*Come out to the dunes this Saturday to see how plants and insects on the beach thrive in summer weather! We’ll ID plants, pick up trash, get rid of invasive plants; whatever needs doing. Join us this Saturday August 25 from 10am-12pm.

Please remember to prepare for the weather and terrain: there is no shade in the hilly, uneven dunes area, so wear sturdy shoes and bring a hat, sunscreen, and water.

*Also be sure to come back on Sunday afternoon for the South Shore Farmers Market- this Sunday August 26 is our last weekly market of the season. Stay tuned for special markets throughout the autumn.  Visit SSFM on Facebook.

**Please note: re-routing of Hwy 41 means there is some confusion about how to enter the park. Enter at the intersection of South Shore/79th. Follow the new construction of Hwy 41 slightly south (go through the ‘road closed’ barricade, follow to the T-intersection, turn left and go back north directly into the park.

Rainbow Beach is located at 3111 E. 77th St. By foot, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St. By car, enter from 79th St., go past the water filtration plant, and park in the first parking lot. Please meet at the entrance to the nature area, which is located at the southern end of the beach (look for the banners!). Tools and equipment will be provided, but please bring water and dress appropriately for the weather. Contact Alison Anastasio at alison.anastasio@gmail.com for questions and to RSVP.

*Mark your calendar*
Sunday, August 26 – last weekly South Shore Farmers Market at Rainbow Beach
Saturday, September 28- community stewardship workday
Saturday, October 26 – community stewardship workday

RB_Flyer082513

July 27: Community Stewardship Workday

24 Jul

Come out to Rainbow Beach Dunes this Saturday to see how plants and insects on the beach thrive in hot weather! We’ll ID plants, pick up trash, get rid of invasive plants; whatever needs doing. Join us this Saturday July 27 from 10am-12pm.

Please remember to prepare for the weather and terrain: there is no shade in the hilly, uneven dunes area so wear sturdy shoes and bring a hat, sunscreen, and water.
Also be sure to come back on Sunday afternoon for the South Shore Farmers Market! Visit SSFM on Facebook.

**Please note: re-routing of Hwy 41 means there is some confusion about how to enter the park. Enter at the intersection of South Shore/79th. Follow the new construction of Hwy 41 slightly south (go through the ‘road closed’ barricade, follow to the T-intersection, turn left and go back north directly into the park.

Rainbow Beach is located at 3111 E. 77th St. By foot, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St. By car, enter from 79th St., go past the water filtration plant, and park in the first parking lot. Please meet at the entrance to the nature area, which is located at the southern end of the beach (look for the banners!). Tools and equipment will be provided, but please bring water and dress appropriately for the weather. Contact Alison Anastasio at alison.anastasio@gmail.com for questions and to RSVP.

*Mark your calendar*
Saturday, August 24- community stewardship workday
Saturday, September 28- community stewardship workday

RB_Flyer072713

 

 

Followup: June 22 workday

30 Jun

P1010659

We had a small but mighty group attacking the leading edge of the cheatgrass! Thanks to volunteers from Chicago Cares and CPD for their hard work.

South Shore Farmers Market: Opening day is June 23!

18 Jun

Fun thing #2 to do at Rainbow this weekend.

We’ve only been working on the South Shore Farmers Market since about February (we =  Qae-Dah, Marion, me and lots of volunteers from the community), but it seems like it’s been a long time coming. We’ve got a huge swell of support from the community and elsewhere in the city.

So far our vendors are:
Adoo Farms
BOT Bakery
Breadman Baking
C&D Family Farms
Ingram’s Jam and Bread
Rainbow Growers Co-op
The Abundance Project
Tamales Express
Tomato Mountain Farm

Join us this Sunday, 1-5 at Market Circle in Rainbow Beach Park for our inaugural market!

SSFM Flyer 5-2013

June 22: Community Stewardship Workday

18 Jun

Come out to Rainbow Beach Dunes this Saturday to see the beginning of the showy season! Beautiful blooms of all types are just around the corner. We’ll ID plants, pick up trash, get rid of invasive plants; whatever needs doing. Join us this Saturday June 22 from 10am-12pm.

Also be sure to come back on Sunday afternoon for the opening day of the South Shore Farmers Market! Visit SSFM on Facebook.

**Please note: re-routing of Hwy 41 means there is some confusion about how to enter the park. Enter at the intersection of South Shore/79th. Follow the new construction of Hwy 41 slightly south (go through the ‘road closed’ barricade, follow to the T-intersection, turn left and go back north directly into the park.

Rainbow Beach is located at 3111 E. 77th St. By foot, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St. By car, enter from 79th St., go past the water filtration plant, and park in the first parking lot. Please meet at the entrance to the nature area, which is located at the southern end of the beach. Tools and equipment will be provided, but please bring water and dress appropriately for the weather. Contact Alison Anastasio at alison.anastasio@gmail.com for questions and to RSVP.

*Mark your calendar*
Sunday June 23, South Shore Farmers Market OPENING DAY!
Saturday, July 27 – community stewardship workday
Saturday, August 24- community stewardship workday

 

photo 1 photo 3 photo 2

 

Followup: Invasive species management

17 Jun

We really attacked the cheatgrass, but the truth is we barely made a dent.

P1010555

P1010553

Nevertheless, our volunteers from Gary Comer and Chicago Cares had a blast!

May 25: Invasive species management

21 May

Come out to Rainbow Beach Dunes on Saturday to continue this season’s invasive species hunt. We’ll be sure to make a dent in the invasive sweetclover and cheatgrass populations. Join us this Saturday May 25 from 10am-12pm.

**Please note: re-routing of Hwy 41 means there is some confusion about how to enter the park. Enter at the intersection of South Shore/79th. Follow the new construction of Hwy 41 slightly south (go through the ‘road closed’ barricade!) follow to the T-intersection, turn left and go back north directly into the park.

Rainbow Beach is located at 3111 E. 77th St. By foot, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St. By car, enter from 79th St., go past the water filtration plant, and park in the first parking lot. Please meet at the entrance to the nature area, which is located at the southern end of the beach. Tools and equipment will be provided, but please bring water and dress appropriately for the weather. Contact Alison Anastasio at alison.anastasio@gmail.com for questions and to RSVP.

*Mark your calendar*
Saturday, June 22- community stewardship workday
Sunday, June 23- First South Shore Farmers Market of 2013!
Saturday July 27- community stewardship workday

RB_Flyer052513

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

%d bloggers like this: