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Winter Wonderland Festival

Winter Wonderland Festival
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A researcher from the Shedd Aquarium, who is in her second year of studying the biology and ecology of the mudpuppy population in Wolf Lake, will talk about her research and then demonstrate how she does it at the 15th annual Winter Wonderland at Wolf Lake on January 16.
The event, sponsored by the Association for the Wolf Lake Initiative (AWLI), is free to the public. The morning session will be held at the Environmental Education Center, 2405 Calumet Avenue, Hammond.  The afternoon session will be held at William Powers State Fish & Wildlife Area, 126th Place and Avenue O, Chicago.
Alicia Beattie, research associate at Shedd Aquarium, will speak on Chasing Mudpuppiers at Wolf Lake in the morning and then give a demonstration in the afternoon.
The multi-year research project was launched in 2014 by Dr. Phil Willink, senior research biologist at the Shedd Aquarium.   His researchers are gathering such baseline information as the amphibians’ population dynamics, feeding habits and contributions to ecosystem functions.
Beattie visits Wolf Lake a week at a time.  Her team’s composition changes daily during visits from October to May.  Curious fishermen help as do volunteers from local colleges, organizations, and government agencies.
A mudpuppy is a large salamander and a long-time resident of Wolf Lake.  Featuring colorful gills, it grows to 11 to 18 inches long and remains in the water.   It is most active during cold weather.
Other speakers and guides at the festival include archaeologist Les Marszalek, ecologist; Dr. Young Choi of Purdue University Calumet; Jeannie Regan-Dinius, Indiana DNR; Racine Kovach, Lake County Solid Waste Management District; John Pastirik, and Michel Boos, AWLI.
Outdoor activities, weather permitting, will include cross-country skiing, skating and hiking.
The tentative schedule is as follows:
9 a.m.: Welcome by Lake County Solid Waste Management District
9:05 a.m.: Poster contest winners honored
9:15 a.m.: Visit exhibits and displays and tour building and trout stream by Lake County Solid Waste Management District
–Over the Line by AWLI
–Native American artifacts by Les Marszalek
–Amphibians and reptiles of the Calumet Region by Alan Resetar of the Field Museum
9:30 a.m.: “Chasing Mudpuppiers at Wolf Lake” by researcher Alicia Beattie, Shedd Aquarium.
9:30 a.m.: Cross-country skiing and skating by John Pastirik
10:00 a.m.: Retrieving Native American Artifacts by Les Marszalek
10:30 a.m.: Birding tour of Wolf Lake by Dr. Young Choi, Purdue University Calumet
11:00 a.m.: Underground Railroad in Northwest Indiana by Jeannie Regan-Dinius
Noon: Transfer to William Powers State Fish & Wildlife Area
1:00  p.m.: Welcome by Chris Rollins, William Powers State Fish & Wildlife Area, Illinois Department of Natural Resources
1:05  p.m.: Visit exhibits and displays
–Over the Line by AWLI
–Native American artifacts by Les Marszalek
–Amphibians and reptiles of the Calumet Region by Alan Resetar of the Field Museum of Natural History
1:30 p.m.: Roundtable discussion on the Underground Railroad Connections in Calumet Region.
2:30 p,m.: Demonstration by researcher Alicia Beattie, Shedd Aquarium
3:30 p.m.: Tree identification by John Pasterik
4:00 p.m.: Concluding discussions over pizza
AWLI is a bi-state not-for-profit organization and land trust headquartered at Calumet College of St. Joseph.  Its mission is to work across state boundaries to protect and enhance the Wolf Lake watershed.
website: www.wolflakeinitiative.org

Sue

Sue Baxter

Susie Young Baxter, CEO, has published PanoramaNOW Magazine for 31 years. Her hobbies are Camping, Boating, Hiking, Nature, Gardening and Outdoor Activities. She is an Artist, Graphic Designer, an Avid Seamstress, Dabbles in Homemade Crafts and Landscaping. Since her Father was a Health Teacher, she also likes homeopathic Health Solutions. Since blogging started over 10 years ago, PanoramaNow has been added to Newsbreak – a national news affiliate.

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About The Author

Sue Baxter

Susie Young Baxter, CEO, has published PanoramaNOW Magazine for 31 years. Her hobbies are Camping, Boating, Hiking, Nature, Gardening and Outdoor Activities. She is an Artist, Graphic Designer, an Avid Seamstress, Dabbles in Homemade Crafts and Landscaping. Since her Father was a Health Teacher, she also likes homeopathic Health Solutions. Since blogging started over 10 years ago, PanoramaNow has been added to Newsbreak - a national news affiliate.