Fall programs kick off with a Family Fall Nature Walk at 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 8, at Grand River Park. This walk, for people of all ages, will focus on the sights, sounds and smells of autumn as well as late summer observations of plants and animals. This hike will last about 90 minutes and is canceled if raining. Grand River Park is located in Georgetown Township. From the intersection of Fillmore Street and 28th Avenue, travel north on 28th Avenue to the park entrance. Meet in the parking lot near the picnic building.
A Fading into the Darkness Hike is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 22, at the Rosy Mound Natural Area. Watch the sunset and the light fade from high dunes. Dusk is when day animals retire, and crepuscular and nocturnal animals become active. Bring bug spray, a small flashlight, and a sense of adventure as the group observe the changes as light fades into darkness. This hike, for adults and older children, will last about 90 minutes and will be canceled if raining. The Rosy Mound Natural Area is located in Grand Haven Township on Lakeshore Avenue south of Rosy Mound Drive. Hiking at Rosy Mound is strenuous due to stairs up the dunes.
For those interested in birding, there will be a Thursday Morning Bird Walk on Sept. 6 and Sept. 13 beginning at 9 a.m. at the Nature Education Center. September marks the end of fall migration in our area for many birds. Beginning and experienced birders are welcome to join these 90-minute hikes to search for fall migrants. Bring binoculars (loaners are available). Walks are for adults and older children and are canceled if raining. The Nature Education Center is located at Hemlock Crossing County Park in Port Sheldon Township. From U.S. 31, travel west on Croswell Street to West Olive Road. Travel south on West Olive Road to the park entrance. The center is at the end of the park drive. Meet inside the center.
Bring the youngsters for a Sunday Nature Walk for Kids in September at the Nature Education Center. Walks for kids in K through second grades will be on Sept. 16 and Sept. 30. Walks for kids in third through sixth grades will be on Sept. 9 and Sept. 23. Join the Nature Education Center staff at 2 p.m. for these one-hour hikes at Hemlock Crossing. Fall is a great time to observe seasonal changes along the trails and each day brings new discoveries. These age-specific walks will focus on these changes in a fun and interactive way. Walks are canceled if raining.
And for stargazers, Fall Astronomy Sky Viewings, offered by the Shoreline Amateur Astronomical Association, are scheduled for 9 p.m. Sept. 7 and Sept. 28 at the Hemlock Crossing County Park. These outdoor sky viewings will be held weather permitting near the Nature Education Center. If canceled due to weather, the viewing will be rescheduled for the following Saturday. Telescopes will be provided or you may bring your own. Programs are for adults and older children. Bring a lawn chair and binoculars.
There are no program fees and advance registration is not required for any of these programs. For more information, call 616-786-4847.