Before you settle in for the long winter ahead, bring your family to unplug, stretch your legs, and give thanks for the great outdoors and all its beauty. Journey back in time with a Mass Audubon naturalist as your guide as we look for signs from long ago of the people and wildlife who once lived here, and some who still do. You will have a chance to see and touch old tools and artifacts, learn the names and stories of the towering trees that reach overhead, and search for the wild creatures that rustle in the leaves around us in these special places. This hike is approximately 1.5 hours long, set at a leisurely pace, with stops to explore.
Join The Trustees of Reservations for an afternoon hiking tour of Choate Island. What could be better than a Choate Island hike AND picnic? This special spot is the jewel in the crown of the Crane Wildlife Refuge, and is only accessible by boat. Join us for a rare chance to explore the cultural and natural history of this treasure. Participants will be led on a modest trek that will go past the Proctor Barn, White Cottage, and Choate House before landing all the way to the top of the island where spectacular views await. A picnic lunch (sandwich, fruit, cookie, drink) for each participant will be prepared by our award-winning Inn at Castle Hill.
Imagine Sing & Learn sessions are fun-filled morning programs perfect for you and your active preschooler! Our structured activities include hands-on science, music and movement, a thematic snack, and an outdoor adventure if the weather complies. Keep learning with coloring pages and follow-up activities to continue the fun at home.
Join the Joppa Flats STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) Team, where you will work together with other creative and curious students for a weekly engineering challenge! We'll study how scientists and engineers have designed prosthetic legs for elephants, prosthetic beaks for eagles, and the prosthetic tail for "Winter" the Dolphin from Dolphin Tales. In collaboration with other creative and curious students, we'll work on problem-solving skills, increase your awareness of design elements in nature, and unleash your inner scientist!
Come celebrate Weir Hill's 50th anniversary as a Trustees property and the grand opening of the Weir Hill Stevens street parking lot. In partnership with Friends of North Andover Trails join us for a beautiful fall foliage hike to celebrate Weir Hill! The hike will be somewhat hilly and strenous but definitely family friendly and leashed dogs welcome. Enjoy cider and other fall harvest goodies to kick off the hike. The ribbon cutting will take place at 1:15 and the hike will leave shortly after. Come celebrate this special place! This is a free event.
Come to Halibut Point State Park to learn about trees! Often, what we do see of the natural world is less significant than what we don’t see. An exploration into the wood wide web of the perennials around us, revealing surprises of communities, environmental influences and conscious behavior. Bring sunscreen, clothing layers and hydration. Rain cancels. Best for those eight and over.
Maudslay State Park invites you to be an archaeologist for the day! Learn how to think like an archaeologist…excavate a test unit, screen for and identify artifacts, and document and record soil levels. Other activities focus on the extensive and rich peopling of the area dating back thousands of years. Find out why this place was and is so special to the First People of Massachusetts. Learn how to use a bow-drill, grind corn with a mortar and pestle, weave a fishing net, make a ground stone-tool fishing weight, make a ceramic pot in the traditional indigenous way, play the game of Hubhub, bring an artifact for the experts to ID, and even try your hand (arm) at throwing an atlatl!
The Ipswich River is the perfect place to start your children canoeing. We'll pair up two adults and two children per canoe and take a leisurely paddle up the river. We'll stop off in one of the backwater areas and do some dipping in the river to get a closer look at the creatures that live under the surface. On our return, we'll enjoy a snack at the picnic tables by the Nature Center and talk about what we discovered. Bring a blanket and we'll provide a sweet treat.
Summer beach days are over, but our 110-gallon tide pool touch tank is still filled with marine life! Drop in for this free program at Joppa Flats and examine the critters you might have discovered on your own visits to the shore. Sea Urchiins, Moon Snails, Sand Dollars, hermits, Horseshoe Crabs, and more! This free programming for folks of all ages includes special features for little ones.
Explore the Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary after hours and join us for a night of camping under the stars. Have an early dinner at home and then come with your family and your tent. We will explore nature through games and hands-on activities, set up our tents near the Barn before sundown, and tell stories after the sun sets. All campouts include an evening and a morning activity or hike and a light breakfast.
Tuesday, December 24
Wednesday, December 25
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