Be the Light Winter Solstice walk

Thursday, Dec. 21, 6:30 – 8 p.m.

You are invited to “Be the Light” on the night of the Winter Solstice. We’ll celebrate the longest night of the year with a self-guided luminary trail, a campfire with s’mores and a DIY luminary station. We will also honor the light we all have within and call attention that many in our community feel they have lost their light because of personal struggles. All will be encouraged to “shine” their lights even brighter to help them reclaim their light and encourage them to step out of the darkness.

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Campfire Programs

All programs Friday, 6:30 – 8 p.m.

Dec. 8, Owl Moon
Jan. 12, Winter Constellations
Feb. 9, Legends of the North
March 9, Maple Sugar

Come enjoy a Friday night fire at the nature center.  Each month we will explore a new activity, tell stories and socialize under the stars.  Come to one or sign up for all!

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Wood Round Creations

Saturday, December 2, 3 – 4:30 p.m.

Design your own “tree cookie” creations to decorate your home this season. We’ll provide the materials, you bring the ideas.

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Winter Birds

Saturday, Jan. 20, 3:00 – 4:30 p.m.

Not all birds fly south for the winter! Come and learn about some of Minnesota’s winter-hardy birds and how they adapt to the cold.  Meet one of Westwood’s raptors as well.

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New Year’s Eve Open House

Sunday, Dec. 31, 1 – 4 p.m.

Bring your family or come on your own for some outdoor end of the year activities. Try snowshoeing or kicksledding in the snow. No snow, no problem! We will have other activities available that fit the weather conditions. Either way we’ll have a cozy fire outside in our fire ring, along with hot cocoa and other snacks.

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Maple Syrup

Sunday, March 18, 1 – 3 p.m
Monday, March 26, 1 – 3 p.m.

Join us for this annual rite of spring. Tap a tree and if the sap is running, taste the sweet sap. Discover how the trees are tapped and how the sap is collected and cooked to become syrup. Enjoy some of Westwood’s tasty maple syrup on a mini-pancake.

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March Critters Close Up

Saturday, March 3, 1 – 2:00 p.m.

Have you ever wondered what a salamander feels like? What a turtle likes to eat? Or how a snake moves without any legs? Our exhibit animals will be out for an up-close and  hands-on day where you can learn the answers to these questions and more.

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Animal Tracks and Signs

Sunday, Jan. 28, 3 – 4:30 p.m.

Learn how to detect the “clues” that will help you identify the animal guests visiting your yard. We’ll go out on a nature hike to practice our detective skills as we search for tracks, food, fur and other evidence the animals leave behind. Dress for the weather and plan to spend some time outdoors.

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Staying Warm in Winter

Sunday, December 10, 3 – 4:30 p.m.

Minnesota is known for its harsh winter weather, but what keeps animals warm and safe? Discover the answer through hands-on experiments and a fun winter walk. Bring your warm winter boots and we’ll provide the hot cocoa.

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Winter Scavenger Hunt

Sunday, Jan. 14,  1 – 2:30 p.m.

A scavenger hunt is always a good way to explore the outdoors. This time we’ll use one to learn how different animals spend their time during the winter.

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Adult Snowshoeing

Saturday, Jan. 13, 2:30 – 4:30 p.m.

Burn calories at the Nature Center on snowshoes! Hike with a naturalist and explore Westwood Hills Nature Center’s diverse habitats both on and off the trails. Relax afterwards with hot beverages and snacks. Snowshoes will be provided or bring your own. Activity dependent on snow conditions.

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Natural Navigation

Saturday, December 16, 3 – 4:30 p.m.

Learn how to use the sun, the moon and the clues that plants and animals give us to navigate and find your way.

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Snowshoe Adventure

Saturday, Feb. 10, 2:30 – 4:30 p.m.

Join us for a day of exploring the woods and wetlands at Westwood Hills Nature Center on snowshoes. Play games and follow tracks in the snow. Finish the fun by sipping hot chocolate. Snowshoes are provided.  Wear warm winter boots and dress in layers. This event is dependent on snow conditions.

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Nature Unnoticed Winter

Saturday, Feb. 17 , 10 – 11:30 a.m.
Saturday, March 17, 10 – 11:30 a.m.

Explore your natural curiosity. Join a naturalist on a nature walk. We’ll focus on the  seasonal activities of the plants and animals found in the park, so each hike will be a unique experience.

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November Critters Close Up

Sunday, Nov. 19, 3 – 4:30 p.m.

Come visit Westwood’s exhibit reptiles and amphibians close-up and hands-on. There will be an opportunity to touch some of these critters and even observe them as they eat.

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