Scheduled RBD Workdays for 2022

28 Mar

Exciting events are on the calendar for Rainbow Beach Dunes in 2022, starting with a joint event with Chicago Ornithological Society in celebration of Earth Day. Mark your calendars for these fourth Saturday community stewardship days, and bring your friends, neighbors, and family!

  • Saturday April 23, 10am-12pm: Community stewardship with birders from COS (winter clean up and nature walks)
  • Saturday June 25, 10am-12pm: Community stewardship (Prickly pear cactus and weeding)
  • Saturday July 23, 10am-12pm: Community stewardship (weeding and trash removal at Rainbow Beach South) *note different location – this is the small beach that is to the right immediately as you enter the park. You can park along the street.
  • Saturday Sept 24, 10am-12pm: Community stewardship (insect nature walk led by co-steward Jen Raber!)

Earth Day (4/23) Beach Clean Up for the Piping Plovers

3 Apr

Please sign up for a time slot below:

10:00am – https://forms.gle/q458Joz8kCvsQrKq5

10:30am – https://forms.gle/Uhzk6ztHtzi53FcF7

11:00am – https://forms.gle/wCSDFXZWAfZBhnnb8

11:30am – https://forms.gle/Xm83Sw3k3qwpEf4E6

Rainbow Beach is visited by migrating plovers annually, and deemed by experts to be the most promising possible additional nesting site in Chicago. To prepare for the return of plovers to Chicago and help address one of the biggest threats to plovers and shorebirds across the Great Lakes, we’re going to do some spring cleaning.

This event is proudly organized by the following partners: the stewards of Rainbow Beach Dunes, Rainbow Beach Park Advisory Council, Shedd Aquarium, Chicago Ornithological Society, Chicago Audubon Society, Illinois Ornithological Society, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, IL Department of Natural Resources, and the Chicago Park District.

Saturday April 23: joint Earth Day cleanup with Chicago Ornithological Society

28 Mar

Piping plovers at Montrose Beach, (c) Chicago Tribune

Join RBD volunteers as we unite with the COS to make our beach habitat attractive to the piping plover! In 2019, two of these amazing endangered birds (Monty and Rose) nested at Montrose Beach Dunes for the first time. We hope that they or their offspring will find Rainbow Beach Dunes as nice a place to make a nest and raise a family.

From Chicago Ornithological Society:
“Chicago is home to numerous beaches, many of which are home to incredible natural areas with the potential to host nesting piping plovers. Rainbow Beach is one such beach, a site visited by migrating plovers annually, and deemed by experts to be the most promising possible additional nesting site in Chicago.

To prepare for the return of plovers to Chicago and help address one of the biggest threats to plovers and shorebirds across the Great Lakes, we’re going to do some spring cleaning.

On EARTH DAY, Saturday, April 23rd, 2022, join us for a beach clean up at Rainbow Beach. All are welcome and no prior experience or equipment necessary but RSVP is required.

10:00am – https://forms.gle/q458Joz8kCvsQrKq5
10:30am – https://forms.gle/Uhzk6ztHtzi53FcF7
11:00am – https://forms.gle/wCSDFXZWAfZBhnnb8
11:30am – https://forms.gle/Xm83Sw3k3qwpEf4E6

To help keep group size manageable, maintain social distancing, protect the sensitive habitat, and maximize our efforts, we ask that volunteers sign up for one of four rolling time slots above: 10:00am, 10:30am, 11:00am, or 11:30am.

To RSVP, please click on the google registration form associated with your preferred time slot. If the form is closed, then that time slot has reached capacity.

Once you have signed up, we will be reaching out via email with important workday information such as where to meet and what to bring. If you have any questions, please contact us at ActionDays@sheddaquarium.org.

This event is proudly organized by the following partners: the stewards of Rainbow Beach, Rainbow Beach Park Advisory Council, Shedd Aquarium, Chicago Ornithological Society, Chicago Audubon Society, Illinois Ornithological Society, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, IL Department of Natural Resources, and the Chicago Park District.

Some background on the Piping Plovers:
In 2019, a pair of endangered Great Lakes Piping Plovers arrived at Montrose Beach and made history as they began nesting. In spite of numerous challenges and with the help of countless volunteers, the pair dubbed Monty and Rose, successfully raised a family and returned do so again in 2020 and 2021. Since then, their many young have started their own lives, such as Nish who made history of his own by being the first plover to nest in Ohio in over 80 years.

As we eagerly anticipate Monty and Rose’s return for a fourth year, and celebrate as they raise generations of Chicago style plovers, we are looking to the future.”


Want to support the Rainbow Beach Park community and learn about all kinds of events and programs in the Park? Join the Rainbow Beach Park Advisory Council, attend a meeting on the 4th Monday of the month at 6:30, and certainly visit their Facebook page to learn more.

  • Rainbow Beach Park runs parallel to South Shore Drive from 75th-79th Streets.
  • By foot, or from the #6 bus stop, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St. 
  • By car, you can only access the park at the southern end, from Hwy 41 at Farragut.
    • 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, into the parking lot before the Fieldhouse.

Go to the far right corner of the first parking lot/southern end of the beach to the entrance of the Nature Area. Meet at the banner! Find directions and a map here.

2021! A year of transition

9 May

One of the earliest bloomers at RBD, the sand cress (Arabidopsis lyrata) population is living its best life right now, drinking in the sun, before the grasses and perennials get tall and shade them out. They’re good at colonizing bare sand (they are not good competitors) — and we have a lot of that given the storms and high lake levels over the winter. 


Happy spring, friends! Not only has RBD gone through some changes over the last several months (due to high lake levels), so too has our stewardship team. I, Alison, have been a steward at RBD for over 10 years. In 2016, the fantastic Jen Raber joined as co-steward. And now we are transitioning our newest member, Jacob Klippenstein, into the role as lead steward: workday organizer and leader, point of contact for volunteers and Chicago Park District, Jacob is a neighbor to Rainbow, member of the Rainbow Beach Park Advisory Council, and overall awesome person. What are the rest of us doing? Jen will remain co-steward, and I will become a steward emerita – I hope to see you all at workdays and special events at Rainbow, while continuing to update the stewardship blog when I have the chance (along with Jacob!). 

Please add rbdstewardship@gmail.com to your address books as this is where future mail for this list will come!

Join us soon at Rainbow Beach Dunes: 

  • Saturday May 22, 11am-1pm: Community stewardship (winter trash cleanup, nature walk, weed pulling)
  • Saturday July 24, 10am-12pm: Community stewardship (sweet clover removal- one of the most satisfying weed-pulling events you’ll ever experience)
  • Saturday Sept 25, 10am-12pm: Community stewardship (invasive species removal, trash cleanup, nature walk)

As always, please RSVP here

Until further notice, we’ll continue to follow these COVID-19 guidelines. 

  • Please do not attend if you or someone in your household isn’t feeling well, is in quarantine, or if you have visited a state affected by the emergency travel order in the last 14 days.
  • Get vaccinated! The sooner a large proportion of the population is vaccinated, the sooner restrictions can be lifted. 
  • Volunteers must stay at least 6 feet from each other or any other park attendee at all times.
  • Face coverings (with nose and mouth covered) must be worn at all times in the natural area, regardless of physical distancing.
  • Gloves must be worn at all times in the natural area. It is recommended you bring your own gloves, but there will be some available for one time use.
  • Gloves are not a substitute for good handwashing hygiene so you should wash your hands before and after visiting the natural area and minimize touching anything that someone else may have touched.
  • Hand sanitizer will not be provided so it is recommended you bring your own hand sanitizer.
  • Please bring your own pen to sign in and to sign the annual volunteer waiver, so that no pens need to be shared among volunteers.

Want to support the Rainbow Beach Park community and learn about all kinds of events and programs in the Park? Join the Rainbow Beach Park Advisory Council, attend a meeting on the 4th Monday of the month at 6:30, and certainly visit their Facebook page to learn more.

  • Rainbow Beach Park runs parallel to South Shore Drive from 75th-79th Streets.
  • By foot, or from the #6 bus stop, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St. 
  • By car, you can only access the park at the southern end, from Hwy 41 at Farragut.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, into the parking lot before the Fieldhouse.

Go to the far right corner of the first parking lot/southern end of the beach to the entrance of the Nature Area. Meet at the banner!


Find directions and a map here.

Scheduled RBD Workdays for 2021

3 Apr

Remember summertime at the Dunes? Still a few months away but Rainbow, plus you all, will be a sight to see in just a few months time. Mark your calendars and bring your friends, neighbors, and family!

  • Saturday May 22, 10am-12pm 11am-1pm: Community stewardship (winter trash cleanup, nature walk)
    • Note the time change and join the South Shore/Rainbow Beach community to clean up the rest of this beautiful park for It’s Your Park Day! Sign up here for their event from 9-11 and then join us afterwards in the nature area!
  • Saturday July 24, 10am-12pm: Community stewardship (sweet clover removal- one of the most satisfying weed-pulling events you’ll ever experience)
  • Saturday Sept 25, 10am-12pm: Community stewardship (invasive species removal, trash cleanup, nature walk)

Follow up: August and September workdays

9 Oct

In August, we pulled weeds and picked up trash! A small but mighty group of dedicated volunteers.

And what a beautiful day it was, with bright yellow, white, and greens throughout the site!

In September, after a nature walk and super satisfying cottonwood seedling removal with a great crew …

…CPD stewardship coordinator extraordinaire Lucy surprised Alison with flowers in recognition of 10 years of volunteering at Rainbow Beach Dunes!

Rejoice: workdays on August 29 and September 26!

14 Aug


Great news! The Chicago Park District is allowing limited access for community stewardship volunteers at lakefront parks. We’ll have the chance for 2 workdays this season — late August and late September — but notably with 1) limited capacity for volunteers and 2) a few important health and safety restrictions.

  • Saturday August 29, 9-11am: Community stewardship workday
  • Saturday Sept 26, 9-11am: Community stewardship workday

Our tasks will be to get reacquainted with a site that has undergone lots of changes this year, collect trash, and remove invasive species — all while safe and physically distanced.

1) The total group size is capped at 10 people so you must RSVP here, and attend only after your RSVP has been confirmed. First come first served until the 10-person capacity is reached. Unfortunately we cannot accommodate drop-in attendance for these workdays.

2) Health and safety restrictions:

  • Please do not attend if you or someone in your household isn’t feeling well, is in quarantine, or if you have visited a state affected by the emergency travel order in the last 14 days.
  • Volunteers must stay at least 6 feet from each other or any other park attendee at all times.
  • Face coverings (with nose and mouth covered) must be worn at all times in the natural area, regardless of physical distancing.
  • Gloves must be worn at all times in the natural area. It is recommended you bring your own gloves, but there will be some available for one time use.
  • Gloves are not a substitute for good handwashing hygiene so you should wash your hands before and after visiting the natural area and minimize touching anything that someone else may have touched.
  • Hand sanitizer will not be provided so it is recommended you bring your own hand sanitizer.
  • Please bring your own pen to sign in and to sign the annual volunteer waiver, so that no pens need to be shared among volunteers.
I am confident these guidelines will not impede a successful and fun workday and look forward to seeing you soon at Rainbow Beach Dunes!

Want to support the Rainbow Beach Park community and learn about all kinds of events and programs in the Park? Join the Rainbow Beach Park Advisory Council, attend a meeting on the 4th Monday of the month at 6:30, and certainly visit their Facebook page to learn more.

Rainbow Beach Park runs parallel to South Shore Drive from 75th-79th Streets.
By foot, or from the #6 bus stop, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St.
By car, you can only access the park at the southern end, from Hwy 41 at Farragut.

  • 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, into the parking lot before the Fieldhouse.

Go to the far right corner of the first parking lot/southern end of the beach to the entrance of the Nature Area. Meet at the banner!
Find directions and a map here.

A COVID field season

24 Jul

Due to COVID-19, the summer field season for researchers, land managers, and engaged citizens is an odd one this year. Many decades-long research programs will be missing a 2020 datapoint, especially as a result of travel restrictions. But even at our local Rainbow Beach Dunes, we can’t do our volunteer stewardship and monitoring work owing to its lakefront location — even though this year presents even more unusual conditions owing to its lakefront location.

How is RBD feeling this double whammy?

Because lakefront beaches in the city of Chicago are closed due to COVID-19, RBD isn’t open to the public or volunteer stewardship. The unfortunate irony is that this is precisely the time the site is undergoing massive changes in the landscape due to very high lake levels.

The loss of beach, dune, and vegetation is a result of Lake Michigan’s encroachment and can be seen clearly in this aerial photo of Rainbow Beach taken by the Chicago Park District in May.

20200529 Rainbow Beach and NA_transparent_mosaic_group1

Aerial view Rainbow Beach, May 2020

You might recall that in the far right corner by the breakwater (circled below), the sand used to be all the way out to the bend, back in the olden days (see also historic photos below, from ~2007-2012).RBD aerial photo 2020 - right corner

What used to be totally covered in native sand prairie and dune vegetation is now basically new “beach”:

RBD aerial photo 2020- new beaches

And one of my favorite features of the dunes — the huge, healthy and proliferating mats of arctic bearberry spreading out over 10s of meters — has been ripped up by the lake, and rolled into long tangles of stems, at the very edge of this new beach.

We also lost the panne, which was full of rare wetland plant species, including the incomparable fringed gentian and one of my favorites, grass of parnassus. Now they’re covered with sand, perhaps to emerge again in the future if the seedbank stays viable!

RBD aerial photo 2020 - old panne

And the swale, which was rid of the invasive species Phragmites and full of the lovely native Kalm’s St. Johns’s Wort, is literally underwater! You can see some of the dead shrubby branches poking up out of the water if you look real close:

RBD aerial photo 2020 - old swale

But as we all know, the water levels of Lake Michigan are variable and therefore ecosystems that are shaped by it are dynamic. That’s right, Lake Michigan dunes are DYNAMIC, here at RBD in Illinois but also around the Lake, in Indiana and Michigan! These shifting sands and shorelines are the forces this ecosystem has had to contend with for the last 10,000 years – whether it’s relatively undisturbed by humans, as in the National and State Parks, or it’s literally constructed by humans, as in Rainbow Beach Dunes.

So what can we expect next from our dynamic ecosystem?

Well, we’ve got a new panne starting! With the expertise of the natural areas contractors from Cardno, this was foreseen and Jack Pines, lovers of this groundwater-fed wetland micro-habitat, were planted in 2019! You can see all 3 of them in the aerial photo, right next to this new panne wetland:

And these new, bare sand beaches? They’ll be colonized quickly with marram grass -the dune builder- which will pave the way for a succession of plant species, and in a few more years, we’ll once again have a foredune taller than I am.

•••

As a reminder of how the lake levels have had an effect on RBD over the last ~20 years, see below (images from Google Earth):

RBD aerial pics over time1RBD aerial pics over time2

Scheduled RBD Workdays for 2020

11 Feb

P1080201

Remember summertime at the Dunes? Still a few months away but we’ve got some fun workdays planned for you this year. Mark your calendars and bring your friends, neighbors, and family!

update 5/1/20: Due to COVID-19, volunteer stewardship through the Chicago Park District is suspended AND Rainbow Beach Dunes, as a lakefront park, is closed until further notice.  That doesn’t mean you still can’t get outside to see some of the amazing lesser known parks and preserves in and around Chicago! Get outside and stay safe.

update 7/22/20: Lakefront beaches and natural areas remain closed to the public and volunteer stewardship work. When these guidelines from the Mayor change, we will do our best to reschedule some workdays from earlier in the year. Get outside and stay safe!

update 8/14/20: Chicago Park District is now allowing limited access for community stewardship activities at lakefront natural areas! We will have workdays in August and September but the total group size is capped at 10 people so you must RSVP here, and attend only after your RSVP has been confirmed. First come first served until the 10-person capacity is reached. Unfortunately we cannot accommodate drop-in attendance. 

  • Saturday May 2, 7-10am: For the Birds! Migration season bird walk with Chris Williamson/COS
  • Saturday May 2, 10am-12pm: Community stewardship (winter trash cleanup, nature walk)
  • Saturday June 27, 10am-12pm: Community stewardship (sweet clover removal- one of the most satisfying weed-pulling events you’ll ever experience)
  • Saturday July 25, 10am-12pm: Insect walk led by Jen!
  • Saturday August 29, 9-11am: Community stewardship workday
  • Saturday Sept 26, 10am-12pm: Community stewardship workday

October 19: bird walk and seed collecting *note different time

13 Oct

p1050272

Grasses are big and tall, boldly coloring the dunes with golds, yellows, and oranges, while the asters and goldenrods are starting to fade: truly one of the most brilliant times of year!

    new england aster with a cucumber beetle IMG_1417

Come out to RBD this Saturday October 19 for a really exciting last community stewardship workday of the year:

First, we’ll take a bird walk with the Chicago Ornithological Society throughout the park from 7-9am. This is quite a wonderful opportunity because we’re in the middle of migration season, and as you may know, the Chicago lakefront is a stopover spot for many tired birds as they fly south. We’re glad our friends at COS are bringing out the experts, like Christine and Geof Williamson to lead the walk!

Then, from 9:00-11:00am we’ll spend time in the natural area, taking a nature walk and collecting seeds from our native plants.

Join us Saturday October 19 from 7-9am to bird, 9-11am to collect seeds, or both for or a whole morning at Rainbow! Note that we will be out there rain or shine so prepare for the weather and terrain (sandy, wet, sometimes unstable): it may be cold, windy and/or rainy.  Sturdy shoes, long pants, and water are recommended. Tools, equipment, and snacks will be provided.

Want to support the Rainbow Beach Park community and learn about all kinds of events and programs in the Park? Join the Rainbow Beach Park Advisory Council, attend a meeting on the 4th Monday of the month at 6:30, and certainly visit their Facebook page to learn more.
**Mark your calendars**
See you next time in 2020!

 

….
Rainbow Beach Park runs parallel to South Shore Drive from 75th-79th Streets.
By foot, or from the #6 bus stop, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St.
By car, you can only access the park at the southern end, from Hwy 41 at Farragut.
  • 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, into the parking lot before the Fieldhouse.

Go to the far right corner of the first parking lot/southern end of the beach to the entrance of the Nature Area. Meet at the banner!
Find directions and a map here.

Saturday August 17: invasive species management

12 Aug

Even the gulls know that RBD offers one of the best views of downtown!

Rainbow Beach Dunes is bloomin’ with milkweed, blazing stars, asters, goldenrod, and sunflowers, while grasses like switchgrass, Canada wild rye, and big bluestem are getting taller everyday. Pollinators, dragonflies, and swallows fill the skies above the nature area. What new plant do you want to learn about at this late summer workday?

 

Along with this profusion of native plant growth, there are also invasive species to remove, like sweetclover, spotted knapweed, goatsbeard, and with the continually high lake levels, the most pernicious invasive species of all: trash.

 

So please join us on Saturday August 17 from 10am-12pm for this family friendly workday to attack invasive species and see the late summer beauty of our dune ecosystem. We encourage you to bring friends, family, and neighbors.

 

Please RSVP for the workday here. Questions? Contact co-stewards Alison Anastasio (alison.anastasio@gmail.com) or Jen Raber (jennifer.raber@gmail.com).

Remember to prepare for the weather and uneven, sandy terrain: sun protection, sturdy shoes, long pants, bug repellent, and water are always recommended. Tools, equipment, and snacks will be provided.


Mark your calendars and RSVP now! This makes it easier for us to plan, and to contact you if any changes arise.
Remaining 2019 workdays:

  • August 17 2019, 10am-12pm: Community stewardship workday – Invasive species management
  • October 19 2019, 7-9am and 9-11am *note the different times* : Special Event! Chicago Ornithological Society birdwalk 7-9 am + RBD workday 9-11am

Rainbow Beach Park runs parallel to South Shore Drive from 75th-79th Streets.
By foot, or from the #6 bus stop, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St.
By car, you can only access the park at the southern end, from Hwy 41 at Farragut.
  • 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, into the parking lot before the Fieldhouse.

Go to the far right corner of the first parking lot/southern end of the beach to the entrance of the Nature Area. Meet at the banner!
Find directions and a map here.

 

Saturday June 22: invasive species management

15 Jun

Please join us on Saturday June 22 from 10am-12pm to attack invasive species that have started to make themselves known, even in this cool wet start to the summer, like goat’s beard, cheatgrass, pepperweed, and bladder campion! Co-steward Jen Raber will lead this family friendly workday and we encourage you to bring friends, family, and neighbors.

Please RSVP for the workday here. Questions? Contact co-steward Jen Raber (jennifer.raber@gmail.com) directly with questions about June’s workday

Remember to prepare for the weather and uneven, sandy terrain: sun protection, sturdy shoes, long pants, bug repellent, and water are always recommended. Tools, equipment, and snacks will be provided. (See directions below and here.)

In other RBD news, high lake levels continue to make RBD slightly different every time I visit this spring. Here’s a video of some wave action from just the other day!

P1030558.jpgIn addition to the dynamic shoreline, you’ll find other new sights: a newly installed bikerack (!!!), so you can feel comfortable riding your bike to the nature area AND locking it up safely.

 

 

P1030593.jpgAlso, both of the tree swallow nest boxes are filled with … nests! I advise you not to get too close so you don’t disturb the protective parents and their precious offspring-to-be.
P1030626.jpg

 
 
 
The native prickly pear cactuses aren’t blooming yet, but you can find many of the larger plants just on the cusp with their buds ready to burst over the next weeks.

 
 
 

Finally, We’re grateful to all our volunteers, and especially the Honeycomb Project for bringing enthusiastic families to the wetland planting on a beautiful day in May. Check out some photos from this fun event. Nearly all our stewardship events at RBD are family-friendly so we hope to see you all again!

 

Mark your calendars and RSVP now! This makes it easier for us to plan, and to contact you if any changes arise.
Remaining 2019 workdays:

  • June 22 2019, 10am-12pm: Community stewardship workday – Invasive species management
  • August 17 2019, 10am-12pm: Community stewardship workday – Invasive species management
  • October 21 2019, 7-9am and 9-11am *note the different times* : Special Event! Chicago Ornithological Society birdwalk 7-9 am +; RBD workday 9-11am

Rainbow Beach Park runs parallel to South Shore Drive from 75th-79th Streets.

  • By foot, or from the #6 bus stop, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St.
  • By car, you can only access the park at the southern end, from Hwy 41 at Farragut.
    • 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, into the parking lot before the Fieldhouse.
  • Go to the far right corner of the parking lot farthest from the field house at the entrance to the Nature Area. Meet at the banner!
  • Find directions and a map here.

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, into the parking lot before the Fieldhouse.

 

Wetland planting followup: May 18 workday

27 May

Volunteers got down and dirty to install native plants in the wetlands of the natural area. It was great to collaborate with the Honeycomb Project on this workday, and many thanks to our committed return volunteers. We couldn’t do this without you!

 

 

 

Saturday May 18: Special event wetland planting

2 May
IMG_3727
Have you been to the dunes lately? As I say every spring, dunes are dynamic and wow you will find a dynamic place next time you visit. With lake levels high and a stormy winter and spring, the foredune is mostly flattened and we see more of the low depressions filling with water regularly. In fact, our first workday of the year is a reaction to this — planting native wetland plants at the far southeast corner of the beach to steel the small pond against invasive species!
Join us and our friends from the Honeycomb Project on Saturday May 18 from 10am-12pm to get your hands dirty and install some plants! Truly you should prepare yourself for wet and dirty conditions; the planting will not just be a day at the beach. :) However, there will be ample time for weed pulling, trash cleanup, or a nature walk if this is more your style.
Please RSVP for the workday here. Questions? Contact co-stewards Alison Anastasio (alison.anastasio@gmail.com) or Jen Raber (jennifer.raber@gmail.com).
Remember to prepare for the weather and terrain: sun protection, sturdy shoes, long pants, bug repellent, and water are always recommended. Tools, equipment, and snacks will be provided.
Check your calendars and RSVP now!
We will have four workdays this year with the hopes that we can concentrate a critical mass of volunteers on these particular dates.
  • May 18 2019, 10am-12pm
    • Special Event! wetland planting – be prepared to get wet and dirty
  • June 22 2019, 10am-12pm
    • Community stewardship workday – Sweetclover removal
  • August 17 2019, 10am-12pm
    • Community stewardship workday – Invasive species management
  • October 19 2019, 7-9am and 9-11am *note the different times*

Rainbow Beach Park runs parallel to South Shore Drive from 75th-79th Streets.

  • By foot, or from the #6 bus stop, walk east from South Shore Dr. on 77th St.
  • By car, you can only access the park at the southern end, from Hwy 41 at Farragut.
    • 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, into the parking lot before the Fieldhouse.
  • Go to the far right corner of the parking lot farthest from the field house at the entrance to the Nature Area. Meet at the banner!
  • Find directions and a map here.
Gallery

Early spring at Rainbow Beach Dunes

30 Apr

 

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