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Advantage Green Issue 2020
April 18, 2020
TNI Celebrates its 40th Anniversary
April 15, 2020
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Rebecca Steiner, Outreach Director
(618) 466-9930 / firstname.lastname@example.org
The Nature Institute marks its 40th anniversary
TNI rolls out environmental education for the community this year with Riverbend Trash Tag Challenge, Discovery Day Camp, Mighty Acorn program, and 50th Earth Day Celebration at its fall BioBlitz.
Godfrey, IL, April 15, 2020 — For 40 years, The Nature Institute has stood high above the Mississippi River atop the bluffs, providing opportunities for the public to engage with nature. “This year is no different – we are striving to meet our mission to foster awareness and appreciation of the natural world through preservation, restoration, and education in new and unique ways” said Rebecca Steiner, TNI Outreach Director.
Currently during the Illinois “Shelter in place” we are involved with a month long, community trash pickup, #RiverbendTrashTagChallenge, a partnership with Alton Main Street and Piasa Palisades Sierra Club. “To further prevent the spread of COVID-19, and in accordance with Illinois Stay at Home order, The Nature Institute has closed all trails and facilities, and all events are cancelled indefinitely. We feel this trash pickup challenge is a great way to foster stewardship for the environment and contribute to the community, all while maintaining social distancing and getting outdoors” said Angela Moan, TNI Executive Director.
Discovery Day Camp at The Nature Institute provides children ages 3-13+ an exciting opportunity to explore the outdoors at a fun and safe day camp, accredited through American Camp Association. Camp sessions run weekly, June 1- July 31, 2020 with half day sessions for 3-6 years, and full day sessions for 6+, dates and age ranges vary. Camp details and registration are found on the TNI website https://www.thenatureinstitute.org/discovery-day-camp-2-2/. There are still spaces open for campers, register today.
Mighty Acorns (https://www.mightyacorns.org/what-is-ma/) is an environmental education program managed by The Field Museum, Chicago Il, that connects 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students to meaningful and sustained interactions at a local natural area that serves as an outdoor learning laboratory. “We are proud to offer this program for Fall 2020 with North Elementary as our pilot school. We hope to engage more schools in the future, get more students outdoors, and help transform their attitudes about nature” said Ramona Puskar, TNI Environmental Educator.
We invite the public to celebrate our 40th anniversary, get outside, and explore at the TNI Earth Day BioBlitz on Saturday, September 12, 2020, 10 am – 2 pm, rain or shine (rescheduled from April). A BioBlitz is an opportunity to gather as much biological data as possible in a short period of time. “We are asking citizens and a myriad of scientists to join us and count organisms observed at The Nature Institute” explained Emily Ehley, TNI Environmental Educator.
Visit www.thenatureinstitute.org to learn more or visit us on Facebook@NatureInstitute
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
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
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
Meet Our Camp Staff
Get the chance to learn more about the Directors and Senior camp leaders. 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.
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
Heartland Prairie Spruces up for Summer
Alton Community Service League grant assists in entrance beautification
May 20, 2014- A beautification grant awarded to The Nature Institute (TNI), located in Godfrey, Ill, will be used to complete the improvement to the north entrance of Gordon Moore Park in Alton, Ill. The Alton Community Service League gave $500 last month to assist in the project that will attract visitors to Heartland Prairie, which is managed…MORE
Local Students Invited to Submit Scholarship Applications
Upcoming deadline for The Nature Institute’s college scholarship program
March 24, 2014 – The Nature Institute (TNI), located on 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, is offering scholarships up to $500 to current college students within the Lewis & Clark Community College (LCCC) district or to high school seniors living… MORE
Night Sky, Wildflowers and Frogs
The Nature Institute invites public to celebrate spring
March 14, 2014 – You know the season has changed when you start to hear the Spring peepers and Leopard frogs start to chirp. At The Nature Institute (TNI), located on 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, you will hear not only those sounds, but soon the laughter during their upcoming spring events… MORE
Pride, Inc. Recognizes Local Project
The Sierra Club and The Nature Institute honored with Outstanding Citizens Award
March 10, 2014– Over 200 attendees of Pride, Incorporated’s Annual Dinner watched on Thursday, March 6th as The Piasa Palisades Group of the Sierra Club and The Nature Institute were given the Outstanding Citizens Award for the Cabin Restoration Project. This award is gifted to individuals or organizations that share the same community-minded… MORE
Think Fun, Education and Outdoors
Registration begins for The Nature Institute’s 32nd year of “Discovery Day Camp”
February 28, 2014- It’s no surprise that children are spending half as much time outdoors as they did 20 years ago. The Nature Institute (TNI), located on 2213 South Levis Lane in Godfrey, Ill, is rolling out the green carpet to get children back outside and into nature… MORE