Shirley Heinze Land Trust announces two April dates for their “Walks with Shirley and Friends” hikes where local experts in their field will lead informational walks around northwestern Indiana nature preserves. Group sizes are limited to 15 hikers, and tickets are available for $25 each.
On Saturday, April 2nd, expert birder Matt Kalwasinski will lead an early spring birding hike. In an endeavor to observe waterfowl and other early spring migrants, hikers will meet at the Indiana Welcome Center in Hammond (7770 Corinne Dr. Hammond, IN) at 8:00am CT and visit a variety of Lake County locations: the Highland Rookery, Grant Street Marsh, and the Shirley Heinze Land Trust property, Seidner Dune and Swale. Northwest Indiana birder Kalwasinski has led many birding trips for Shirley Heinze Land Trust, Indiana Audubon Society, and the Dunes-Calumet Audubon Society.
On Saturday, April 30th, an interpretive naturalist from St. Joseph County Parks will lead hikers through Bendix Woods to explore a variety of spring wildflower blooms: wild ginger, purple spring cress, wild geranium, yellow trout lilies, bloodroot, blue phlox, Canada violets, and many more. Hikers will meet at Bendix Woods in New Carlisle, IN from 9:00am – 11:00am ET and can expect to observe the spring vegetation and learn more about the breadth of plant life native to Northwest Indiana.
Walks with Shirley and Friends is an annual hike series aimed at connecting northwestern Indiana residents with local nature preserves and ecosystems. Shirley Heinze is proud to offer these informational hikes, and anyone interested in participating can purchase tickets here: www.heinze.ejoinme.org/WalksWithShirley.
Since 1981, Shirley Heinze Land Trust has protected, restored, and maintained northwestern Indiana’s rich and significant natural communities, including tallgrass prairie, high dune, oak savanna, boreal flatwoods, dune-and-swale, woodlands, marshes, swamps, ponds, fens, bogs, and riparian habitat.
More than 2,800 acres in Lake, Porter, LaPorte, and St. Joseph Counties have been preserved for the public’s benefit. Shirley Heinze nature preserves feature significant scenic and ecological value, and most are open to the public for hiking and enjoying nature. The organization also works to educate people of all ages to appreciate the importance of land conservation and to experience the natural wonders of this unique region.
For more information on the work and nature preserves of Shirley Heinze Land Trust, visit www.heinzetrust.org, call (219) 242-8558, or access its Facebook page at www.facebook.com/heinzetrust.
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