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Explorations for bats, crayfish part of MCCD programs

Published: Monday, July 7, 2014 3:05 p.m. CDT

WOODSTOCK – Catching fireflies, telling stories around campfires and hikes are on all the agenda for upcoming McHenry County Conservation Distriction programs.

All events require prior registration and include:

• Things That Go Buzz in the Night: 8 to 9 p.m. Thursday, July 17, at Pleasant Valley Conservation Area, 13315 Pleasant Valley Road, Woodstock. Moths, beetles, crickets, fireflies, and other noctural insects are out and about in the cover of night. Adults and families will learn how to attract, catch and observe these tiny creatures. The program is free for county residents and $2 for non-residents. The deadline to register is July 13.

• Morning Meanders – Tail Tales: 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Friday, July 18, at Prairieview Education Center, 2112 Behan Road, Crystal Lake. Children five to seven years old will enjoy three hours filled with games, activities, and crafts all based around the theme of the day. A snack is provided. Dress appropriately for the weather and wear good walking shoes. The program costs $6 for county residents and $8 for non-residents. The deadline to register is July 14.

• Andy’s Awesome Alphabet Campfire: 7:30 to 9 p.m. Friday, July 18, at Marengo Ridge Conservation Area, 2411 N. Route 23, Marengo. A fun twist on a family campfire, audience members will draws letters out of a hat, triggering a fun activity – stories, songs, jokes and even some dancing – to correspond with each letter. The program is free for county residents and $5 for non-residents. The deadline to register is July 14.

• Crafty Crayfish: 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 19, at Fel-Pro RRR Conservation Area's east entrance, 1520 Crystal Lake Road, Cary. Children six to 13 years old will go in search of the four species of crayfish, also known as crawfish or crawdads, that are common to this part of northern Illinois. Attendees should dress for the weather and getting muddy. The program is free for county residents and $3 for non-residents. The deadline to register is July 15.

• Barn Full of Bats: 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 22, at Lost Valley Visitor Center in Glacial Park, Route 31 and Harts Road, Ringwood. After a fun and informative presentation, participants will hike one mile through Glacial Park to observe bats flying out of a barn at dusk. Other arrangements can be made for those unable to walk the distance. The program is free for county residents and $5 for non-residents. It is open to adults and families ages 5 and up. The deadline to register is July 18.

Go to the McHenry County Conservation District’s website at www.MCCDistrict.org to view the programs in greater detail or sign up to receive the seasonal magazine Landscapes.

Registration is also available online or by mail and walk-in at Prairieview Education Center, 2112 Behan Road in Crystal Lake, walk-in only at Lost Valley Visitor Center, Route 31 and Harts Road in Ringwood, or for free programs only by phone at (815) 479-5779.

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