Explore Nature with us!

 

A full line-up of free programs that are free and close to home are offered at Volo Bog State Natural Area & The Moraine Hills State Park.

Donationas are happily accepted by the sites' associated Friends groups. 

 

For a complete list of programs offered for Youth Groups and Scout Groups, please visit the IDNR's website  - Volo Bog Interpretive Programs. For more information and reservations, call (815-) 344-1294 or email dnr.volobog@illinois.gov. Reservations are requested for most programs and required for some.

REGULARLY PLANNED EVENTS

Please check our calendar for official dates & times.

Leave No Child Inside! friendly events noted with LNCI!

Guided Bog Tours of Volo Bog
LNCI!

Most Saturdays & Sundays  11:00 a.m. & 1:00 p.m.  

 

All ages are welcome to our one-hour public tours for individuals, families and small groups of nine or fewer.  No reservations are needed except groups of 10 or more. Please phone to arrange a private group tour.  For more information, phone 815-344-1294 or visit Volo Bog State Natural Area.

 

For official dates and times, check our calendar regularly for updates - subject to change.

 

Astronomy Nights at Volo Bog State Natural Area
LNCI!

Usually Third Friday of the month at VBSNA - check our calendar to confirm dates

     Business Meeting 7:30pm

     Public Astronomy Program 8:30pm

     Public Star Party 9:30pm

 

The Lake County Astronomical Society (LCAS) will hold its regular monthly meeting at 7:30 pm beginning with an open business meeting, followed by a free public astronomy program at about 8:30 p.m.  Then about 9:30 p.m. there is a public star party in the parking lot (weather permitting).  Guests are encouraged to join in viewing many astronomical objects using member binoculars and telescopes.  The Lake County Astronomical Society is a group of people of all ages who are interested in the science of astronomy.  For more information, visit LCAS Astronomy or on FaceBook at LCAS FB.  Direct questions to LCAS at:  contact@lcas-astronomy.org

 

For official dates and times, check our calendar regularly for updates - subject to change.

 

Friends of Moraine Hills State Park Board Meeting

Fourth Thursdays of the month (usually)  7:00 p.m. in the VBSNA Visitor Center classroom

July is annual members' meeting picnic (date TBA) 

 

All members are welcome to attend board meetings which are held in the Volo Bog State Natural Area classroom.  To become a member, visit Friends of Moraine HIlls State Park and look under “membership” for a printable form.

 

The Friends of Moraine Hills State Park is a 501(c)(3) membership organization incorporated to promote citizen awareness of the local natural heritage of Moraine Hills State Park, portions of which are dedicated state nature preserves, and to preserve the same through special events, educational and training programs, acquisitions of properties for such purposes and take whatever steps deemed necessary to insure the continued care and preservation of Moraine Hills State Park as a natural site.

 

For official dates and times, check our calendar regularly for updates - subject to change.

Friends of Volo Bog Board Meetings

Fourth Thursday of the month (usually) 7:00 p.m. in the VBSNA Visitor Center library 

June is annual members' meeting the Sunday after Father’s Day

 

All members are welcome to attend board meetings.  Meetings are usually on the fourth Thursday of the month at 7:00 p.m. with exceptions in June, November & December.  To become a member, visit our membership page for a printable form.

 

The Friends of Volo Bog is a 501(c)(3) membership organization incorporated to promote citizen awareness of the local natural heritage of Volo bog State Natural Area, portions of which are dedicated state nature preserves, and to preserve the same through special events, educational and training programs, acquisitions of properties for such purposes and take whatever steps deemed necessary to insure the continued care and preservation of Volo Bog State Natural Area as a natural site.

 

For official dates and times, check our calendar regularly for updates - subject to change.

Volunteer Veterans’ Conservation Corps at VBSNA

9:30 a.m. - 12:00 Noon on Saturdays (usually)

 

Registration required. Please dontact Stacy Iwanicki at 815-344-1294 or dnr.volobog@illinois.gov.

 

Meetings are usually at the Volo Bog SNA garage behind the Visitor Center.

Volunteer Veterans’ Conservation Corp provides opportunities for veterans to continue serving their country by assisting with and developing projects to enhance our state parks and natural areas.  The VVCC is a cooperative effort of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources at VBSNA, MHSP & MD, Friends of Volo bog and Friends of Moraine Hills State Park with additional support provided by the Veterans Assistance Commission of McHenry County.  Natural Resources Coordinator Stacy Iwanicki, advisor to the VVCC, emphasizes how the corps is bringing veterans from different generations and conflicts together around a common cause - protection and enhancement of the natural environment in Illinois.  For information on joining the Volunteer Veterans’ Conservation Corps, contact Ms. Iwanicki at 815-344-1294 or dnr.volobog@illinois.gov.

 

For official dates and times, check our calendar regularly for updates - subject to change.

 

Bird Walks at McHenry Dam
LNCI!

Saturdays & Sundays 8:00 a.m.  (usually)

 

Ask for our refrigerator flyer!

 

Bring binoculars and field guides or borrow from our leaders. Walk is approximately 2 miles and takes from 1.5 - 3+ hours with weather and luck in birding.  Adults and attentive kids ages 6 and older are welcome. Meet at the south end of McHenry Dam parking. Registration is requested at 815-344-1294 or dnr.volobog@illinois.gov. Group size is limited - Walk-ins welcome if space allows but walk may be cancelled if minimum registration is not met 24 hours prior.  Co-sponsored, and led by members of the McHenry County Audubon. Visit them at McHenry Audubon.

 

For official dates and times, check our calendar regularly for updates- subject to change.

 

Habitat Work Days at Volo Bog State Natural Area

Every-other Thursday; Once-a-Month Saturdays (usually)

 

Adults (and kids ages 10 and older)

 

The Habitat Restoration and Stewardship Team (HRST) at Volo Bog State Natural Area is seeking new volunteers to tackle exotic invasive species and help restore the natives!  Each session may involve pulling, cutting, planting and gathering seeds, depending on the season.  A camaraderie and sense of accomplishment makes each day worthwhile!

 

        Come Prepared:  Please dress for the weather with long pants and bring drinking water and comfortable work gloves.

 

Reservations requested at 815-344-1294 or dnr.volobog@illinois.gov. Walk-ins welcome but session may be cancelled if minimum registration is not met 24 hours prior.  New HRST Volunteers must register ahead and plan to arrive 15 minutes early for paperwork.  Sessions are cancelled if it rains or will rain within four hours of end time.

 

For official dates and times, check our calendar regularly for updates - subject to change.

Bird Walks at Volo Bog State Natural Area
LNCI!

Saturdays & Sundays    8:00 a.m. (usually)

 

For official dates and times, check our calendar regularly for updates - subject to change.

 

Ask for our refrigerator flyer!

 

Bring binoculars and field guides, or borrow from our leaders.  Walk is approximately 3 miles and takes from 2 - 3+ hours with weather and luck in birding.  Adults and attentive kids ages 6 and older are welcome.  Meet in the main parking lot.  Registration is requested at 815-344-1294 or dnr.volobog@illinois.gov. Group size is limited. Walk-ins welcome if space allows but walk may be cancelled if minimum registration is not met 24 hours prior.  Co-sponsored, and led by members of, McHenry County Audubon.  Visit them at www.McHenryAudubon.org.

Of Bogs & Books
Book Discussions at Volo Bog State Natural Area

Second Saturdays 10:00am - 11:30am

 

For official dates and times, check our calendar regularly for updates - subject to change.

 

Ask for our cumulative list of over 200 titles.

 

Engaging Conversations since 1994!

This monthly gathering of adults (age 17 & older, generally…) shares discussions of nature, science & environmental readings over morning coffee & snacks.  Over 200 titles have been discussed since establishment in 1994!

 

To register, contact us by email at dnr.volobog@illinois.gov or call 815-344-1294. Drop ins are welcome!

 

Signs of Spring at Moraine Hills State Park
LNCI!
 

TBA - Keep an eye on our calendar in April for dates.

 

For official dates and times, check our calendar regularly for updates - subject to change.

 

Meet Naturalist Stacy Iwanicki in the Northern Woods parking area near the playground for a search for Spring!!!  We’ll look, listen, feel and smell for hints of the awakening.  Bring your binoculars or borrow ours.  Whether birds, frogs or flowers, we’ll find them all.  Geared to all ages. Reservations requested at 815-344-1294 or dnr.volobog@illinois.gov.  Walk-ins welcome but session may be cancelled if minimum registration is not met 24 hours prior.

Adopt-A-Road Volunteer Days with Friends of Volo Bog
 
 

Please inquire for dates and times.

Sign up for one, more, or all!

 

Friends of Volo Bog is regrouping and restarting this effort along Brandenburg Road!  With 4 miles of roadside (two sides of a two-mile stretch) we need eight volunteers to do it right. Adults (and kids 10 years & older with a responsible adult) can join the team. Each pair of volunteers goes ½ mile up and then ½ mile back.  All equipment is provided.

 

Reservations requested at 815-344-1294 or dnr.volobog@illinois.gov. Walk-ins welcome but session may be cancelled if minimum registration is not met 24 hours prior.  New Adopt-a-Road Volunteers must register ahead and plan to arrive 30 minutes early for paperwork & safety orientation.  Sessions will be rescheduled if weather is undesirable.

 

 

Nature Photography Club at Volo Bog State Natural Area
 
 

Third Wednesdays    7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

 

For official dates and times, check our calendar regularly for updates - subject to change.

 

New members are always welcome - visit www.ShutterBugsofVoloBog.com for membership information (payment accepted at the meeting).

The ShutterBugs of Volo Bog meet on the third Wednesday of each month.  Share your love of nature photography while learning how to improve your images through camera skills composition, field techniques and digital manipulation.  Guest speakers, programs, and member competitions help photographers learn how to create impactful nature images.  While membership is required to compete, non-members are always welcome to attend - no registration required.  Memberships are available at the meetings.  Visit www.ShutterBugsofVoloBog.com for more information.

World Migratory Bird Days LNCI!
 
 

Join us for two celebrations - one at Volo Bog State Natural Area and again at McHenry Dam.

 

Inquire official dates and times

 

Get Your Passport stamped as you participate in over 20 games and activities! 

More Stamps = More Prizes including our ever-popular Audubon Plush Bird that sings its song when squeezed!

FREE "Door" prizes at each site include a pair of binoculars, gift certificates to our favorite Mexican restaurants, and photo prints from some of our favorite photographers.

Moraine Hills Nature Center
 
 

Moraine Hills Nature Center will re-open regularly in April (until then, it is catch-as-catch-can)

Family Fishing Day with Friends of Moraine Hills State Park at McHenry Dam
LNCI!
 
 

Usually in June - keep an eye on our calendar for a date

 

For official dates and times, check our calendar regularly for updates - subject to change.

 

Visit The Friends of Moraine Hills State Park website for more information as it becomes available.

International Bog Day
LNCI!
 
 

More information coming soon!

 

For official dates and times, check our calendar regularly for updates - subject to change.

Usually in fall - keep an eye on our calendar for dates!

Visit the Moraine Hills Run for the Hills website for more information.

Run for the Hills
Check here for updates