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March Forest Preserve programs feature maple syrup magic, beekeeping basics and woodsy women

The Forest Preserve District of Will County will offer two maple syrup programs on March 6 at two different locations, “Maple Syrup Magic” at Plum Creek Nature Center in Crete Township and “Maple Sugaring” at Isle a la Cache Museum in Romeoville. (Forest Preserve staff photo | Chad Merda)

Here are some of the online and in-person Forest Preserve District of Will County programs being offered in March. Registration is available via the Event Calendar at ReconnectWithNature.org. Zoom links will be emailed upon registration. Masks must be worn for indoor and outdoor in-person programs.

Lunch ’n’ Learn: Steel & Stone

Noon-12:45 p.m. Wednesday, March 3, Zoom webinar. Free, ages 16 or older. 815.886.1467.
In the heart of Will County, Joliet lives up to its nickname: The City of Steel and Stone. Thousands of immigrants found jobs at steel mills and the quarries that harvest stone from the area’s bedrock. Today we can see relics of these industries throughout our forest preserves. Hear stories of the backbreaking work of the I&M Canal, the blistering heat of the Joliet Iron Works and the genius of the Riverview Farmstead masonry. Registration is required.

Women in the Woods
6-7 p.m. Wednesday, March 3, Zoom webinar. Free, all ages. 815.722.9470.
Mother Earth isn’t the only woman in the woods. Explore the positive impacts determined women have made on nature throughout history. Learn who is making strides in the field now. Discover how our daughters and granddaughters can become the most emboldened and wild generations yet. Registration is required.

Maple Syrup Magic
Saturday, March 6, Plum Creek Nature Center. Three 90-minute sessions will be offered at 10 a.m. 11:45 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Free, all ages. 708.946.2216.
From the earliest times, Native Americans and pioneers of the Midwest made maple syrup from the sweet sap of the sugar maple tree. Learn how it’s made, find maple trees on site and try some real maple syrup. History has never been sweeter! Registration is required by Friday, March 5.

Maple Sugaring
1-2:30 p.m. Saturday, March 6, Isle a la Cache Museum, Romeoville. Free, ages 13 or older. 815.886.1467
Join the Forest Preserve District of Will County at Isle a la Cache to learn about the process of maple sugaring. In this program, we will discuss its historical importance among the Native American people as well as the actual process of collecting tree sap and turning it into syrup. Registration is required by Thursday, March 4.

Meet a Beekeeper
12:30-2:30 p.m. Sunday, March 7, Plum Creek Nature Center, Crete Township. Free, ages 18 or older. 708.946.2216.
Meet local beekeeper Mike Rusnak to discuss the art of beekeeping. Ask questions and chat with Rusnak and other beekeeping enthusiasts. Rusnak has more than 15 years of beekeeping experience to share. Pick up specific beekeeping tips or simply learn more about the world of beekeeping. Registration is not required.

For more information on the Forest Preserve District of Will County’s preserves, trails and events, visit ReconnectWithNature.org.


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