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Fort Collins Natural Areas Department Offers Free Activities in June

This news was released 345 days ago and may contain inaccurate information.

Contact Information
Zoë Whyman, City of Fort Collins Natural Areas Community Relations Manager, , 970-221-6311
Everyone is invited to discover and celebrate your natural areas with over 20 activities this month! Topics include the Cache la Poudre River, making art in nature, wildlife, geology, wildflowers, local history and more. Details are listed below. To learn more call 970-416-2815 or email .

Capturing Soapstone Prairie as Art
Saturday, June 1, 10:00 a.m.-noon, Soapstone Prairie Natural Area
Meet at the north parking lot.
New, aspiring, or seasoned artists looking for a field day will learn to see Soapstone Prairie in a new way, filling field notebooks and sharing tricks of the artist’s trade with author and illustrator Gary Raham. Bring snacks, lunch, notebooks, and tools. REGISTRATION REQUIRED at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

River Walk
Saturday, June 1, 10:00-11:30 a.m.
Meet at Lee Martinez Park, 600 North Sherwood St, lower parking lot by the tennis courts.
Enjoy a leisurely walk along the Poudre River trail to observe birds, trees, and plants, and the interaction of the river with landforms along the way. Bring the family. 1-2 miles, easy. No registration required, but you can get a reminder and updates by signing up at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

National Trails Day
Saturday, June 1, 8:30 a.m.- 1:00 p.m., Soapstone Prairie Natural Area
Get your hands dirty! Volunteers of all ages are invited to help restore trails at Soapstone Prairie. A free celebratory lunch will be provided at noon. Kid-friendly projects and activities will be available. REGISTRATION REQUIRED at http://www.rei.com/stores/fort-collins.html
Nature at Noon: Bears on the Move
Wednesday, June 5, Noon-1:00 p.m.
Community Room, 215 N. Mason St.; enter through the north entrance.
Mark Vieira, wildlife biologist with Colorado Parks and Wildlife, will share information about his study using scent-baited hair snags to collect DNA samples from bear hair. The study is helping scientists estimate bear populations in northern Larimer County. Bring a sack lunch. No registration required, but you can get a reminder and updates by signing up at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Nature Nuggets—Prairie Dogs: It Takes a Village
Thursday, June 6, 10:00-11:00 a.m., Pineridge Natural Area
Meet at Dixon Reservoir parking lot off CR 42C.
Children ages 3-7 and parents/guardians will enjoy discovering fun facts about wildlife, with hands-on activities. Parents must attend with children. Day care and other groups should schedule a separate time. No registration required, but you can get a reminder and updates by signing up at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Plant Walk
Saturday, June 8, 8:30-10:00 a.m., Cathy Fromme Prairie Natural Area
Meet at the Shields St. parking lot.
Take a leisurely stroll and explore interesting plants and flowers of the prairie. ½ mile, easy. No registration required, but you can get a reminder and updates by signing up at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Bobcat Ridge Basics
Saturday, June 8, 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m., Bobcat Ridge Natural Area
Meet in the parking lot.
Bring your family to see how the natural world collides with history. Visit homestead buildings, learn about pioneer history, and the amazing diversity of wildlife, captured in photos by motion-triggered cameras. Bring water to drink, lunch, and sunscreen. 3-4 miles, easy to moderate. No registration required, but you can get a reminder and updates by signing up at http:// naturetracker.fcgov.com.


Geology: Walking the Gangplank
Sunday, June 9, 8:00 a.m.-noon, Soapstone Prairie Natural Area
Meet at north parking lot.
Hike to the landform known as the gangplank and discover geological secrets of this beautiful landscape. Bring water, snacks, sunscreen, and a jacket. 5-6 miles, moderate. No registration required, but you can get a reminder and updates by signing up at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Soapstone Surprise
Monday, June 10, 9:00-10:30 a.m., Soapstone Prairie Natural Area
Meet at the north parking lot.
Discover the amazing archaeological and natural secrets of this special place. Hike with a naturalist after the program if desired. Bring water to drink and snacks. No registration required, but you can get a reminder and updates by signing up at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Foothills Geology
Tuesday, June 11, 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m., Coyote Ridge Natural Area
Meet in the parking lot.
Discover some of the forces that shaped the Front Range landscape in this beginning geology hike. Bring water, snacks, sunscreen, and a jacket. 4 miles, easy to moderate. No registration required, but you can get a reminder and updates by signing up at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Nature Nuggets—Prairie Dogs: It Takes a Village
Thursday, June 13, 10:00-11:00 a.m., Pineridge Natural Area
Meet at the Dixon Reservoir parking lot off CR 42C.
Bring your little ones (ages 3-7 years) every Thursday to learn about nature with stories and hands-on activities. Parents/guardians must be present at all times. No registration required, but you can get a reminder and updates by signing up at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com. Daycare centers and other groups should schedule a separate time.

Protecting the Western Frontier with the Buffalo Soldiers
Saturday, June 15, 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m., Soapstone Prairie, south parking lot.
Saddle up with the Buffalo Soldiers of the American West. Discover their role in protecting frontier citizens against crime and lawlessness. Experience a reenactment of a stagecoach robbery! Learn how this courageous and historic group dealt with the harsh elements of the plains. Travel on horseback with guides who will uncover the exciting history of the railroad and stagecoach era. Bring your own horse, water to drink, food, and sunscreen. REGISTRATION REQUIRED at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Skygazing at Fossil Creek
Saturday, June 15, 9:00-10:30 p.m., Fossil Creek Reservoir Regional Open Space
Meet at the parking lot.
Volunteers from the Northern Colorado Astronomical Society provide telescopes for viewing the sky, and share their knowledge about stars, planets, galaxies, and more. Dress warmly, and bring a blanket or chair to sit on. Visit their website for cancellation notices: ncastro.org. No registration required, but you can get a reminder and updates by signing up at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Hike to a Homestead
Sunday, June 16, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Soapstone Prairie Natural Area
Meet at the south parking lot.
Learn about the early history of the settlers who braved this harsh landscape. Visit several homestead ruins and hear stories about the families who lived here. Bring plenty of water, lunch, snacks, and sun protection. 6 miles, moderate-strenuous. REGISTRATION REQUIRED at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Journalist Takes a Nature Walk
Tuesday, June 18, 9 a.m.-noon, Pineridge Natural Area
Meet at the Dixon Reservoir parking lot, off CR 42C.
Bring your family for an observational look at nature. Explorers 10 years old and up are invited to experience the art of keeping a journal, viewing nature from the perspective of a scientist, writer, artist, or philosopher. Bring water and snacks. 1-3 miles, easy. REGISTRATION REQUIRED at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Nature Nuggets—Spectacular Spiders
Thursday, June 20, 10-11 a.m., Bobcat Ridge Natural Area
Meet at picnic shelter, 1/8 mile from parking lot.
Bring your little ones (ages 3-7 years) every Thursday to learn about nature with stories and hands-on activities. Parents/guardians must be present at all times. No registration required, but you can get a reminder and updates by signing up at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com. Daycare centers and other groups should schedule a separate time.

Morning on the Prairie
Friday, June 21, 9 a.m.-noon, Coyote Ridge Natural Area
Meet at the parking lot.
Discover the wide variety of wildlife at Coyote Ridge, including prairie dogs, rattlesnakes, coyotes, burrowing owls and more. All ages are welcome. 2.5 miles, easy. No registration required, but you can get a reminder and updates by signing up at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Natural Area Family Night Walk
Saturday, June 22, 8-10 p.m.
Location given at time of registration
Enjoy a short walk in the moonlight with interactive activities and stories related to nocturnal animals and night senses. Dress warmly, bring water. 1 mile or less, easy. REGISTRATION REQUIRED at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com. For information, call 970-416-2815.

Natural Area Adult Night Walk
Sunday, June 23, 8-10 p.m.
Location given at time of registration
Adults and accompanied children 16 and older experience a quiet walk with information about the night, and time for reflection in the moonlight. Dress warmly, bring water. 2 miles, easy. REGISTRATION REQUIRED at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com. For information, call 970-416-2815.

Stroller Stroll
Tuesday, June 25, 10:30-11:30 a.m., Poudre River Trail
Meet at Lee Martinez Park, 600 N. Sherwood St, lower parking lot by the tennis courts.
Bring your toddler (3 years and under) and explore the natural areas from the ground up. Enjoy a short walk with strollers, and stops along the way to see, feel, and smell natural objects. REGISTRATION REQUIRED at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Nature Nuggets—Spectacular Spiders
Thursday, June 27, 10-11 a.m., Fossil Creek Reservoir Regional Open Space
Meet at program shelter near parking lot.
Bring your little ones (ages 3-7 years) every Thursday to learn about nature with stories and hands-on activities. Parents/guardians must be present at all times. No registration required, but you can get a reminder and updates by signing up at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com. Daycare centers and other groups should schedule a separate time.

Fireside Tails—Creatures of the Night
Thursday, June 27, 8-9:30 p.m., Fort Collins Museum of Discovery, 408 Mason Court.
Meet at the museum entrance.
Join a Master Naturalist around the campfire to hear stories and learn fun facts about the wildlife that come out after dark. S’mores provided by museum staff. REGISTRATION REQUIRED at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Making Connections to Nature
Saturday, June 29, 9-10:30 a.m., Bobcat Ridge Natural Area
Meet at the picnic shelter, 1/8 mile from parking lot.
How are a rock, tree, squirrel, and bird all connected? Discover the way that nature threads everything together on this short walk. No registration required, but you can get a reminder and updates by signing up at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Tell Me More About the Sun and Seasons
Saturday, June 29, 8:15-10:30 p.m., Bobcat Ridge Natural Area
Meet at the picnic shelter, 1/8 mile from the parking lot.
Enjoy a brief family-friendly astronomy program followed by skygazing with telescopes provided by the Northern Colorado Astronomical Society. Dress warmly, bring water and a jacket. Please arrive on time—entrance gate closes after start. REGISTRATION REQUIRED at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Wildflowers, Wildlands & Wildlife Photography
Sunday, June 30, 5-8 p.m., Cathy Fromme Prairie Natural Area
Meet at the Shields St. parking lot.
Learn basic nature photography techniques with a variety of skills. Nature photography is 10% photography skill and 90% nature observation. Discover which animals and plants reside at Cathy Fromme Prairie, the best time to see and photograph landscapes, basic camera functionalities, and how to compose great nature photos. Bring your own camera equipment, water to drink, and snacks. REGISTRATION REQUIRED at http://naturetracker.fcgov.com.

Natural Areas Passport
Now through November 15
Everyone is invited to celebrate 20 years of natural areas with the Passport to the Natural Areas. It is a checklist of natural areas to visit and free activities. Complete your passport for a prize and to be entered into a drawing for a backpack full of outdoor supplies. The free Passport brochure is available online at http://www.fcgov.com/naturalareas and in natural area trailhead brochure boxes.