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Thorn Creek Nature Center

Other Link http://tcwoods.org

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  1. Trails
THORN CREEK NATURE CENTER                       
247 Monee Road, Park Forest, IL 60466
708-747-6320    
thorn_creek@att.net

Website: http://tcwoods.org

 

Forty years ago, June 1978, Thorn Creek Woods Nature Preserve was dedicated as an Illinois Nature Preserve. It is one of the largest forested areas in northeastern Illinois...the fifth largest in the Illinois Nature Preserves system. This large dry mesic oak hickory forest is dominated by 150-year old white and red oak trees with a rich understory of native shrubs, rare plants and spring wildflowers. A walk through the Woods is a 3.5-mile nature adventure. The preserve also features Thorn Creek Nature Center in an 1861 white steepled building, and the historic Hornicek Farm. 



Workday March2018 by Dena Petraitis

FRIENDS OF THORN CREEK WOODS

Join Friends of Thorn Creek Woods and support the 985 acre Thorn Creek Nature Preserve and its Nature Center. Formed in 1969, Friends efforts ensured permanent protection for this unique open space enhancing Park Forest and the region. Friends volunteers build and repair trails, create exhibits, monitor species, staff the nature center, lead programs, and raise funds for programs and improvements.  Members enjoy a quarterly newsletter and sponsor Earth Day, plus Spring and Fall meetings. Annual family membership is $20 or $50 for an organization; life membership is $200. For more information: 708-747-6320; thorn_creek@att.net; https://tcwoods.org; P.O. Box 32, Richton Park, IL 60471.  

 


bridge

Visiting Thorn Creek Woods Nature Preserve

Come visit our oak-hickory woodlands. Our trails are open! It’s been a particularly lovely spring and summer, so please do come and see what nature has to offer.  When visiting remember:

  • Visit alone or with members of your household
  •  Practice social distancing of at least 6 feet
  •  Wear a face covering when unable to social distance

And visit our webpage often…

Unfortunately, Thorn Creek Nature Center will remain closed to the public for the foreseeable future. While this precludes normal public programming, we will be scheduling monthly outdoor programs for limited numbers of participants. These programs will be announced on the following websites: 

  • Thorn Creek Woods - www.tcwoods.org 
  • Forest Preserve District of Will County - www.reconnectwithnature.org 
  • Village of Park Forest - www.villageofparkforest.com

Our Naturalists continue to work at the nature center and from home. April is working one-on-one with volunteers for trail projects, nature center cleaning and other projects. She can be reached as usual by phone and email: 708-747-6320 and thorn_creek@att.net.


TAKE PRECAUTIONS BEFORE VISITING THORN CREEK WOODS NATURE PRESERVE

The Commission is urging members of the public to adopt all outdoor recreation safety measures recommended by the state as they visit Thorn Creek Nature Preserve. Please review the guidelines issued by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources on Thursday, April 23, 2020:

• Bring alcohol-based hand sanitizer (containing at least 60 percent alcohol) and face coverings.

• Practice social distancing by keeping at least 6 feet of distance between yourself and others.

• Stay home if you are sick or feeling any symptoms, such as fever, coughing, troubled breathing, and/or flu-like symptoms.

• Visit alone or with members of your household.

• Stay local; visit preserves that are closest to where you live.

• If you arrive at a preserve and crowds are forming, please return another time/day to visit.

• Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. If you don't have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper arm/elbow.

For information on the coronavirus contact your County Health Department.

Thorn Creek Nature Center 708-747-6320 or thorn_creek@att.net , https://tcwoods.org
Thorn Creek Woods Management Commission

 

 


Programs & Events 


Visit our website: http://tcwoods.org 


Wednesday Walkers spring2014 reduced


FEBRUARY PROGRAMS

SEASONS AT THORN CREEK WOODS
Saturday, February 6, 2021
10:30 a.m. – Noon
Thorn Creek Nature Center
Ages 13 – adult; 9 participants maximum 
Registration required by February 1: 708.747.6320. 

Discover the woods in a new way. Join naturalists to explore the woods and track seasonal changes throughout the year.  Observe birds and insects, identify trees and flowers, follow tracks and much more. 

Meet in front of nature center. Please bring your own hand sanitizer, face mask, binoculars, water bottle and be prepared to follow the social distancing of 6 feet. Participants should be able to walk 2 miles outdoors on natural surface trails across uneven terrain. Trails can be wet, muddy, icy and snow covered.

TRACKING ANIMALS IN WINTER
Saturday, February 13, 2021
1-2:30 p.m.
Thorn Creek Nature Center
13 yrs. old- adult, 9 participants maximum
Registration required by February 8.   708.747.6320.

Animals survive winter’s chills with unique adaptations and strategies. Join our hike to search for animal tracks and signs, and to learn how life goes on in the cold. 

Meet in front of nature center. Please bring your own hand sanitizer, face mask, binoculars, water bottle and be prepared to follow the social distancing of 6 feet. Participants should be able to walk 2 miles outdoors on natural surface trails across uneven terrain. Trails can be wet, muddy, icy and snow covered. Program is sponsored by Thorn Creek Audubon Society.

Note: Wild Things conference held last 2 weekends of February-April attending. 

MARCH PROGRAMS

PRAIRIE SAMPLER AND TRAIL WORKDAY 
Saturday. March 13, 2021
1-3 p.m.

Thorn Creek Nature Center
Ages 13 - adult, children under 15 must be accompanied by an adult; 9 participants maximum.
Registration required by March 8: 708.747.6320.    

Get down and dirty at our Thorn Creek workday.  Help repair boardwalks, maintain trails, or weed and nurture our prairie sampler and butterfly gardens. Bring gloves, favorite tools and dress for the weather.  Please bring your own hand sanitizer, face mask, binoculars, water bottle and be prepared to follow the social distancing of 6 feet. Trail work is on natural surface trails across uneven terrain. Trails can be wet, muddy and slippery.

SEASONS AT THORN CREEK WOODS 
Saturday, March 20, 2021
10:30 a.m. – Noon
Thorn Creek Nature Center
Ages 13 – adult; 9 participants maximum 
Registration required by March 15: 708.747.6320.

Discover the woods in a new way. Join naturalists to explore the woods and track seasonal changes throughout the year.  Observe birds and insects, identify trees and flowers, follow tracks and much more. 

Meet in front of nature center. Please bring your own hand sanitizer, face mask, binoculars, water bottle and be prepared to follow the social distancing of 6 feet. Participants should be able to walk 2 miles outdoors on natural surface trails across uneven terrain. Trails can be wet, muddy, icy and snow covered.

WOODCOCK WATCH
Saturday, March 27, 2021. Rain date: Saturday, April 3, 2021
6:45 -8 p.m. 
Thorn Creek Nature Center
Ages 13-Adult; 9 participants maximum.
Registration required by March 22: 708.747.6320.

The arrival of the Woodcock is one of spring’s most sought-after sights. Discover the fantastic aerial courtship displays of the Woodcock. Join expert birder Sue Zelek for this evening program and watch in amazement as the male Woodcock seeks his mate.

Meet at Nature Center and carpool to GSU. This field trip is sponsored by Thorn Creek Audubon Society.
Participants should be prepared for the weather and be able to walk 0.5 mile outdoors on uneven terrain.

APRIL PROGRAMS

SEASONS AT THORN CREEK WOODS 
Saturday, April 10, 2021
10:30 a.m. – Noon
Thorn Creek Nature Center
Ages 13 – adult; 9 participants maximum. 
Registration required by April 5: 708.747.6320.

Discover the woods in a new way. Join naturalists to explore the woods and track seasonal changes throughout the year. Observe birds and insects, identify trees and flowers, follow tracks and much more. 

Meet in front of nature center. Please bring your own hand sanitizer, face mask, binoculars, water bottle and be prepared to follow the social distancing of 6 feet. Participants should be able to walk 2 miles outdoors on natural surface trails across uneven terrain. Trails can be wet, muddy and slippery.

EARTH DAY AT THORN CREEK: AMPHIBIANS
Saturday, April 17, 2021
2-4 p.m. 
Thorn Creek Nature Center
Ages 13 - adult, 9 participants maximum.
Registration required by April 12: 708.747.6320.


Join our Earth Day hike at 2 p.m. to explore woodland vernal ponds and wetlands listening for the calls of the wetland inhabitants!  Learn which frogs, toads and salamander live in these woods and why water is so important to them.

Meet in front of nature center. Please bring your own hand sanitizer, face mask, binoculars, water bottle and be prepared to follow the social distancing of 6 feet. Participants should be able to walk 2 miles outdoors on natural surface trails across uneven terrain. Trails can be wet, muddy and slippery. The event is sponsored by Jim Marzuki Fund for Public Programming.

PRAIRIE SAMPLER AND TRAIL WORKDAY 
Sunday, April 25, 2021
1-3 p.m.
Thorn Creek Nature Center
Ages 13 - adult, children under 15 must be accompanied by an adult; 9 participants maximum.
Registration required by April 19: 708.747.6320.    

Get down and dirty at our Thorn Creek workday.  Help repair boardwalks, maintain trails, or weed and nurture our prairie sampler and butterfly gardens. Bring gloves, favorite tools and dress for the weather. 

Please bring your own hand sanitizer, face mask, binoculars, water bottle and be prepared to follow the social distancing of 6 feet. Trail work is on natural surface trails across uneven terrain. Trails can be wet, muddy and slippery.