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Newsroom

Newsroom

For news inquires, or to set up interviews with staff or naturalists, please contact Amy Curry, outreach coordinator at (618) 466-9930 or at acurry@TheNatureInstitute.org

Nature Brew Series

Old Bakery Beer, Nature Institute collaborate to release dozen combinations

October 28, 2016- Two hometown establishments are teaming up to provide craft beer enthusiasts with the tastes of nature. Old Bakery Beer Co. of Alton, Ill and The Nature Institute (TNI) of Godfrey, Ill created “Nature Brews”, a series including a variety of beers all highlighting a natural ingredient foraged straight from TNI managed property.

“We wanted to bring the idea of repurposing and foraging to the table with items people can find in their own back yards,” said Amy Curry, director of outreach for The Nature Institute. “I know many homebrewers and chefs that could utilize these ingredients in their own kitchens.”

She approached James Rogalsky and Lauren Patton, co-owners of Old Bakery Beer Co. with the project idea. Timing was on her side as Rogalsky and Patton had recently started brain storming on native brewing options. MORE

Trivia for Conservation

Game benefiting The Nature Institute to take place at Old Bakery

October 18, 2016- Test your knowledge of history, pop culture, nature and more all while helping The Nature Institute (TNI) in their mission of preservation, restoration and education.

The 2nd annual Trivia Night fundraiser at The Old Bakery Beer Co., located at 400 Landmarks Blvd. in Alton, Ill, will be held on Thursday, Nov. 10. Doors open at 6 p.m. and questions begin at 7 p.m. Admission is $15 per person or $120 for a team of eight to play. This event is sponsored by Shivers Frozen Custard, Maeva’s Coffee, Liberty Bank and Illinois Senator William Haine.

This year’s game will be announced by WBGZ’s Doug Jenkins. Jenkins is the host of 11th hour of WBGZ’s “Let’s Talk” and the Big Z Noon show Monday through Friday. You can hear him on WBGZ 94.3FM or 1570AM. MORE

Environmental Education Interns Needed

The Nature Institute’s student search for new program

 

September 28, 2016 – The Nature Institute (TNI) is expanding its education department and is currently seeking students or recent graduates to fill multiple part and full time opportunities for their highly selective environmental education internship program.

TNI is searching for strong candidates looking to gain real world experience through well-rounded training, on-the-job practice and challenges at its education facility. Individuals interested should be currently enrolled in or have completed a baccalaureate degree and have a passion for teaching the natural world, among other traits.

The intern program is new at the organization. Ramona Puskar, education assistant for TNI, is spearheading the search.

“Interns will become an essential part of the team by taking part in decision making for programs and working directly with all staff from all experience levels and backgrounds.” Puskar continued, “These positions serve as a great opportunity for real world experience working in a non-profit organization.” MORE

Foraging for Fungi

Instruction for safe, autumn mushroom hunting offered at The Nature Institute

September 7, 2016 – Foraging through the wild has been a tool for a variety of recipes for hundreds of years. Learn to correctly identify native, edible autumn mushrooms with The Nature Institute’s (TNI) “Foraging for Fungi” on Saturday, Oct. 1 from 9 a.m. to noon. The event will end with a mushroom fry demonstration for guests to learn some delicious recipes they can use at home.

“Foraging for Fungi” will take place at TNI’s Talahi Lodge, located at 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill.  TNI education director Patti Brown and education assistant Ramona Puskar will begin this program with an informational presentation. Then, the group will head out for a light hike on TNI trails to identify wild mushrooms. MORE

Beat the Heat, All you Can Eat

Shivers Frozen Custard, The Nature Institute to host Ice Cream Social

July 22, 2016– Shivers Frozen Custard and The Nature Institute (TNI) are teaming up to host an Ice Cream Social Fundraiser on Thursday, August 4 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. This event is open to the public and will be held on the lawn of TNI’s Talahi Lodge, located at 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill.

Give summer a farewell at the Ice Cream Social fundraiser for $5 per person and unlimited frozen custard with your choice of toppings. Other donation opportunities will be available. (more…)

Teaming Up for Mind, Body and Nature

River Bend Yoga to host sunset fundraiser benefiting Nature Institute

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                     

July 15, 2016- The inspiring views atop the bluffs at The Nature Institute drew in the co-owners of River Bend Yoga Vicky, Delaney and Janet Keffer, for a new opportunity. Nestled in between the birds and the Mississippi River, they knew this spot would be a great opportunity to bring unique yoga sessions all while offering a change to give back to the community.

Yoga mats in tote, Delaney and Keffer created “Sunset Yoga Fundraiser” to benefit The Nature Institute’s (TNI) mission of raising awareness and an appreciation of the natural world through preservation, restoration and education. This class is a donation based class with all proceeds benefiting the environmental organization. The next session will be on Friday, July 22 at 7:30 p.m. behind the main TNI office building located at 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill. These sessions are open to all levels of experience and will be led by Delaney herself. (MORE)

Nature Institute to Hold Weekend Plant Sale

TNI’s Greenhouse Gang to hold weekend fundraising native sale

June 15, 2016- The Nature Institute (TNI), located at 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey,Ill, who received a large turnout for last month’s plant sale, have expanded to offer a weekend event more more.

TNI’s Greenhouse Gang is excited to announce another Native Plant Sale to be held on Saturday, June 25 from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. at the organization’s greenhouse at the corner of Levis and South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill. Guests can park in front of the brown garage. (more…)

Bringing Native Beauty to Community

The Nature Institute’s Greenhouse Gang to hold first fundraising plant sale

May 13, 2016- The Nature Institute (TNI), located at 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey,Ill, receives help from many, but one of its volunteer groups, the Greenhouse Gang, is bringing something to the community like never before.

TNI’s Greenhouse Gang is excited to announce the first Native Plant Sale on Friday, May 20 from 9 a.m. to noon at the organization’s recently constructed greenhouse at the corner of Levis and South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill. Guests can park in front of the brown garage.

TNI’s Greenhouse Gang has been working all season long to bring native plants to citizens that are looking to enhance their landscaping. Some native plants that will be available are: black eyed Susan, grey coneflower, purple prairie clover, purple coneflower, prairie dropseed, aster, butterfly weed and more. Most of the plants available at this sale will bloom in the summer/fall season.

The Native Plant Sale will have units available in four or six pack trays. Guests may bring their own pots for transplanting by volunteers. Plants are six pack for $6, four pack for $4, quart of dropseed for $5, or a full tray, that has not been transplanted $20. Cash, check, or credit cards are accepted. All proceeds go towards TNI’s mission of preservation, restoration, and education. MORE

 

After Decade, Mercury Transit to Occur

The Nature Institute to host viewing party at Heartland Prairie

May 2, 2016- The Nature Institute (TNI) and friends invite the community to watch an upcoming rare, celestial event: the Mercury Transit. On Monday, May 9 at 6 a.m. the Mercury Transit Viewing Party will take place at the City of Alton’s Heartland Prairie, located on the north side of Gordon Moore Park at 4550 College Ave. in Alton, Ill. The transition will start around 6:12 a.m. and guests can continue to watch with on-site astronomical enthusiasts until 1 p.m. This event is family friendly, free and open to the public.

The Mercury Transit takes place as the planet crosses paths with the sun. Due to Mercury’s position in the solar system, it passes between the sun and Earth, which causes a black dot on the sun’s face. This dot will be visible to the majority of the planet on May 9. The last transition of Mercury happened in 2006 and the next date will not occur until 2019. MORE

Environment Groups Team Up for Earth Day Fest

Celebrate with 5th Annual Riverbend Earth Day Festival at Piasa Harbor

April 8, 2016- Mark your calendars for this year’s “Riverbend Earth Day Festival”, to be held on Saturday, April 16 from noon to 6 p.m. The 5th annual event offers local entertainment, food vendors, artisans market, environmental education and more. The “Riverbend Earth Day Festival will once again be at Piasa Harbor, owned by the Great Rivers Land Trust and is located along the Great River Road.

This year’s festival is sponsored by; Old Bakery Beer Company, Shivers Frozen Custard, St. Clair Beekeeper’s Association, Pearl Pro Audio, Liberty Bank, PictureThis & More, The Telegraph, Advantage News, WBGZ, and The Gateway Gardener. Other sponsors are River Bend Yoga, Madison County Planning and Development, State Representative Dan Beiser and Senator Bill Haine.

The Nature Institute (TNI) is partnering with the Sierra Club, the Great Rivers Land Trust, The National Great Rivers Research and Education Center/ Lewis & Clark Community College (NGRREC) and the Alton Regional Convention and Visitors Bureau for this day of live music, local food, nature activities, electronic recycling, and much more. This event will be held rain or shine and is free and open to the public.MORE

Lending a Helping Hand

The Nature Institute searching for volunteers

March 11, 2016- The Nature Institute (TNI), a local environmental non-profit located at 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill, is searching for community leaders to lend a helping hand in assisting with various projects. Those interested can be individuals, groups, and/or schools and be at least 16 years old or have an adult present. Projects vary and provide many opportunities for volunteers to choose from.

TNI offers a few monthly work days with the next date being Saturday, March 19 at 9 a.m. This date is focused on clean up around Talahi Lodge. The TNI work day is held on the third Saturday of each month, with each month having a different focus.

“With the season quickly changing, we need to spruce up our play area and the surrounding land for guests,” said Patti Brown, education director. MORE

Riverbend Earth Day Festival Accepting Vendors

Registration underway for eco-friendly businesses and nonprofits

February 29, 2016- Vendor registration is open for the 5th annual “Riverbend Earth Day Festival”, to be held on Saturday, April 16 from noon to 6 p.m. at Piasa Harbor, along the Great River Road. This event will be held rain or shine and is free and open to the public.

The event offers local entertainment, food vendors, artisans market, environmental education and more. This year’s event is currently sponsored by Old Bakery Beer Co., Pearl Pro Audio, Liberty Bank, Picture This and More, The Gateway Gardener, St Clair Beekeepers Association, River Bend Yoga, Madison Co. Planning and Development and Senator Bill Haine.

The Nature Institute (TNI) is partnering with the Sierra Club, the Great Rivers Land Trust and The National Great Rivers Research and Education Center/ Lewis & Clark Community College (NGRREC) and the Alton Regional Convention and Visitors Bureau for this day of live music, local food, nature activities, electronic recycling, and much more. MORE

Sweet Treat for Valentine’s Day Weekend

The Nature Institute and LaVista CSA team up for maple tree tapping

February 2, 2016- The Nature Institute (TNI) and LaVista Community Supported Agriculture Farm team up to bring another year of maple tree tapping. “Maple Tapping with LaVista CSA Farm” is an event for those interested in learning with a hands-on approach about the process of making tasty maple syrup and its history. “Maple Tapping with LaVista CSA Farm” will be on Saturday, Feb. 13 at 1 p.m. The event will begin at the entrance to the Oblates, 4350 Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill.

Join Eric and Crystal Stevens, LaVista CSA, and Ramona Puskar, TNI, as they walk through the biology and history of maple trees, tapping with everyday items, boiling and even tasting syrup. This event is $10 per person or $8 for current TNI members, which will benefit the missions of both TNI and LaVista.

Guests will first be led by TNI on a hike through maples trees with a background of tapping and the biology of the trees. Then, LaVista CSA will demonstrate how to tap the tree and collect the sweet water and how to boil the water off. With over five gallons of syrup already tapped, there will be plenty to end with tasting the newly created syrup. MORE

Nature Creations, More at The Nature Institute

Environmental organization to spread holiday cheer with upcoming events

November 25, 2015- A “Candy Cane Challenge”, winter wreath making, a Christmas moon lit hike and more; friends, family, scout groups and the public are welcome to join The Nature Institute (TNI) in celebrating the 2015 holiday season with their upcoming December events.

TNI, located at 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill, is offering many winter events, some free, starting with the 1st annual “Candy Cane Challenge” on Saturday, Dec. 5 from 10 a.m. to noon. This orienteering event is for those that enjoy exploring the woodlands with a GPS or compass. Individuals, partners and groups are invited to test their teamwork by completing the event’s challenges. This event is $5 per person.

The object of the “Candy Cane Challenge” is for participants to move through a series of points identified on a TNI map and return to the finish line. This sport involves endurance, ingenuity and decision making. This challenge is for any one, regardless of age or experience. Courses will be offered to beginners as well as the advanced. Guests may go out on their own or may compete in any of the following challenges: correctly obtain all five color coded canes while correctly deciphering clues, find the most candy canes, fastest time, correctly answer the most questions in the environmental quiz or complete two road blocks properly. MORE

Living History: A Walk through Time

Program to focus on The Nature Institute and region history

November 12- Learn about The Nature Institute’s (TNI) past from those that know it the best; John M. Olin, Aune Nelson, James John Audubon and more. Dozens of costumed, local historians will be at TNI, located at 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill, for a “Living History: A Walk through Time” on Saturday, Nov. 21 starting at 10 a.m. Admission is $10 per person. All money acquired through this event will go to assist TNI in their mission of preservation, restoration and education.

Some speakers will be in full costume with in-period artifacts by their sides. Guests will be allowed to move along the eight historical stops of the trail at their leisure (map will be provided to guests as a take home booklet).

Historical stops along the trail include: Larry Reid, WBGZ’s Outdoors with Larry Reid, as John M. Olin; Brad Winn, Lewis and Clark State Historic Site #1, as an expedition re-enactor with the keel boat replica; story teller and author Brian “Fox” Ellis as John James Audubon and Prince Maximillian, and Eric Robinson, Underground Railroad Tours, talking about TNI property and its important role in the road to freedom.  MORE

Living History Media Advisory

Challenge yourself, smarty-pants

Trivia to benefit The Nature Institute to take place at local brew

October 27, 2015- Test your knowledge of history, pop culture, nature and more all while helping The Nature Institute (TNI) in their mission of preservation, restoration and education.

TNI will be hosting its first Trivia Night fundraiser at The Old Bakery Beer Co., located at 400 Landmarks Blvd. in Alton, Ill, on Thursday, Nov. 12, 2015. Registration opens at 6 p.m. and the questions begin at 7 p.m. Admission is $15 per person or $120 for a team of eight to play. Single and drop in players are welcomed. This event is sponsored by Shivers Frozen Custard. MORE

Trivia Night at OBB Flyer

2014 Year in Review: Back to Basics

Every year our staff gets together to produce an in print publication that is sent to all of our members and friends. This year, we decided to heighten our efforts in promoting our 2014 tasks in a dozen page booklet. Didn’t get one sent to your home? No worries! View the electronic version here. MORE

The Nature Institute Forest Turns “Evil”

Environmental organization opens preserve for Halloween scares

Godfrey, Ill– Ghosts and ghouls keep Halloween fright traditions alive, but a local environmental conservation organization believes that nothing will get this holiday’s admirers more afraid than their own woodland trails.

The Nature Institute (TNI), located at 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill, is introducing a new Halloween event, “Evil Forest”. After countless requests, TNI is offering a different look at their preserve: A haunted one. On Saturday, Oct. 17 from 7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. guests will take a hike through the spooky trails. Admission is $10 per person. This event is most suitable for participants of 10 years of age and older. MORE

Foraging for Fungi

Instruction for safe, autumn mushroom hunting offered at The Nature Institute

September 24, 2015– Many questions surround the tricks of wild mushroom hunting. For example, which wild mushrooms are edible and harmless, or what recipes will bring out the best flavor? All of these questions will be answered by The Nature Institute (TNI) on Saturday, Oct. 10 from 9 a.m. to noon.

“Foraging for Fungi” will take place at TNI’s Talahi Lodge, located at 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill. TNI education director Patti Brown, education assistant Ramona Puskar and TNI board member Dr. Patrick Dailey will begin this program with an informational presentation. Then, the group will head out for a light hike on TNI trails to identify wild mushrooms. MORE

New Season, Big Improvements

The Nature Institute steps up with play area enhancements

May 28, 2015- The Nature Institute (TNI) is celebrating its 33rd year of Discovery Day Camp by looking for a new way to enhance children’s educational experience. With nature as a child’s playground, the potential is infinite.

The summer brings in a new season of hiking and day camps, and with it an enhanced play area. The play area has been on the TNI wish list for a significant time, and with the help of an anonymous donor, the project officially has the green light. MORE

Environment Groups Team Up for Earth Day Fest

Celebrate with the 4th Annual Riverbend Earth Day Festival at Piasa Harbor

March 31, 2015- Mark your calendars for this year’s “Riverbend Earth Day Festival”, to be held on Saturday, April 18 from noon to 6 p.m. The 4th annual event offers local entertainment, food vendors, artisans market, environmental education and more. The “Riverbend Earth Day Festival”; sponsored by St. Clair Beekeepers Association, The Gateway Gardener, Pearl Pro Audio, Madison County Planning and Development and River Bend Yoga, will once again be at Piasa Harbor, owned by the Great Rivers Land Trust along the Great River Road.

The Nature Institute (TNI) is partnering with the Sierra Club, the Great Rivers Land Trust, The National Great Rivers Research and Education Center/ Lewis & Clark Community College (NGRREC) and the Alton Regional Convention and Visitors Bureau for this day of live music, local food, nature activities, electronic recycling, and much more. This event will be held rain or shine and is free and open to the public. Please note that the electronic recycling drive will be held from noon to 4 p.m. only; items brought after 4 pm will not be accepted. MORE *Event Flyer

Opportunity for Local Educator

The Nature Institute seeking education assistant

March 2, 2015- The Nature Institute (TNI), a non-profit land conservation and environmental education organization based in Godfrey, IL, is seeking a qualify educator to fill the open position of education assistant.

The primary responsibility of the education assistant is to provide administrative and program support to the Education Department, primarily the education director. The nature of the work requires flexibility to work on evenings and weekends, as needed. The education assistant follows the policies set forth by the Board of Directors and reports to the education director and the executive director. MORE

Local Environmental Educator Recognized

February events announced

February 5, 2015– Patricia (Patti) Brown of The Nature Institute, located at 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill, received the honor as one of only seven educators in the state of Illinois certified to teach workshops on “Aquatic WILD” and “Project WILD”. These workshops are catered to a variety of educators: formal and non-formal.  MORE

Explore, Learn with The Nature Institute

February events announced
January 23, 2015– The Nature Institute’s (TNI) hiking trails, located at 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill, may be closed until March 1, but staff members of one of Illinois’ largest, private nature preserves is inviting the public out for these upcoming opportunities. MORE 

New Face, Rooted Focus

The Nature Institute welcomes incoming executive director

November 20, 2014- The Nature Institute (TNI), located at 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill, formally welcomed its new executive director. Angela Walker-Moan was officially invited to join the TNI team in early August and has jumped right in by making sure the organization remains focused on its goals.

Walker-Moan has over 20 years of management and finance experience. She previously worked for Reebok and Fox Sports Midwest. Her children have attended TNI Discovery Day Camp and several of the organization’s educational programs throughout the years. Walker-Moan grew up hiking in what is now known as the Olin Nature Preserve. MORE

The Forest at The Nature Institute Gets “Enchanted”

Celebrate Halloween with this safe, family friendly event

September 12, 2014- The Nature Institute (TNI) trails will get “enchanted” for the 13th Annual “Enchanted Forest”. This event is known for bringing in hundreds of residents, with more than 270 last year. The excitement has continued this year with already over half of the hiking times reserved by thrilled locals. MORE

Young Naturalist Program Opens New Season

The Nature Institute’s “Knee-High Naturalists” to answer nature questions
August 25, 2014- “Knee-High Naturalists” at The Nature Institute (TNI), located at 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill, will open this year on September 10th with two sessions to get children three to five years of age interested in the natural world around them. These kids and their parents are welcomed to participate in the upcoming dates for this educational program offered every second Wednesday of the month from now through April 2015. MORE

Birder, Author to Speak about Passenger Pigeon

Current year marks centennial of species’ extinction

July 23, 2014- “A Feathered River Across the Sky: The Passenger Pigeon’s Flight to Extinction”, the first story to showcase this topic since a 1955 study, guides its readers through the journey of a bird that once numbered in the billions. Taking only 40 years to reach a population of zero, passenger pigeons were once the most populated North American bird… MORE