Experience the natural beauty & wildlife of the Meadowlands
It’s time to celebrate spring in the Meadowlands! As we prepare to put winter’s frigid temperatures and snowfalls behind us, the New Jersey Meadowlands Commission (NJMC) invites everyone to experience the region’s amazing natural beauty and wildlife and to participate in our wide array of informative and engaging public programs for all ages.
This season you can experience the region’s breathtaking scenery during the Commission’s guided nature walks, get expert advice on preparing your plant gardens through our new Lunch ‘n’ Learn series, enjoy wildlife education programs with live animal visits, enroll in art classes with nature as your canvas, receive valuable boating safety tips and take NJMC guided pontoon boat cruises and canoe trips.
The Meadowlands Commission is proud to introduce its new Lunch ‘n’ Learn programs. We invite you to pack your midday meal and head to the Meadowlands Environment Center (MEC) for nature-themed discussions in a casual setting. The series kicks off on Wednesday, March 18, at noon, with “Passion for Plants.” NJMC plant expert Lisa Cameron will tell you all you need to know about how to determine the best flora to grow in your garden with the characteristics you want, including size, shape, color, and wildlife value.
On Tuesday, April 14, at noon, Don Torino of the Bergen County Audubon Society will discuss how to “Build a Better Butterfly Garden.” Don will explain how to create a butterfly habitat in your backyard and talk about how people can help the stunning Monarch butterfly, whose numbers have declined precipitously in recent years. Both Lunch ‘n’ Learn programs cost $6; MEC members $5.
This spring the NJMC is also hosting a number of live animal programs that aim to entertain and educate visitors of all ages. Owls, bees—don’t worry, they will be enclosed in an observation hive—and rainforest critters are among our guests. The Commission also encourages you to join our twice-monthly guided nature walks. The free, two-hour excursions co-sponsored by the NJMC and the Bergen County Audubon Society (BCAS) are held on the first Sunday and third Tuesday of each month at various Meadowlands District parks and natural areas.
The leisurely, family-friendly walks are a great way to spot some of the more than 280 bird species that can be seen in the area, including many on the State’s threatened, endangered and species of special concern lists.
Beginning in June, you can explore the Meadowlands’ stunning scenery and wildlife from the unique vantage point of a pontoon boat or canoe. The Commission’s guided, two-to-three-hour pontoon boat and canoe tours of the Hackensack River are led by experienced NJMC staff. The schedule will be announced in May. For more information, call 201-460-4677. As a prelude to the launch of our boat trips, the Commission will host a Boating Safety event on Saturday, May 9, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the NJMC’s River Barge Park in Carlstadt.
Please see the following schedule for a complete listing of our upcoming programs. Pre-registration is recommended and appreciated, though walk-ins are welcome. For more details, including registration information, visit www.njmeadowlands.gov or call 201-777-2431. All events are held at the Meadowlands Environment Center (MEC), 2 DeKorte Park Plaza, Lyndhurst, unless otherwise noted.
Those interested in group outings should call 201-460-4692. To receive email alerts about NJMC programs, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Senator Marcia Karrow, Executive Director of the NJ Meadowlands Commission. Senator Karrow has served as executive director of the NJ Meadowlands Commission since January 2011. Her proven ability to work with various stakeholders to support economic development and sustainability mirror’s the NJMC’s dual mandates of promoting economic growth and protecting the environment.
Sunday March 1, 10 a.m. – Nature Walk Mill Creek Marsh, Secaucus
Sunday March 8, 2 p.m. – Owls Alive!
Saturday March 14, 10 a.m. – Art Class: “Textural Expressions”
Saturday March 14, 2 p.m. – The Buzz About Bees
Tuesday March 17, 10 a.m. – Nature Walk, Harrier Meadow, North Arlington
Wednesday March 18, Noon – Lunch ‘n’ Learn: Passion for Plants
Sunday April 5, 10 a.m. – Nature Walk, DeKorte Park, Lyndhurst
Sunday April 12, 1 p.m. – Birding for Beginners: Bird Identification
Tuesday April 14, Noon – Lunch ‘n’ Learn: Build a Better Butterfly Garden
Saturdays April 18 and 25 and May 2, 2 p.m. – Three-part Art Class Series: The Art Safari
Sunday April 19, 1 p.m. – Birding for Beginners: Optics and Field Guides
Tuesday April 21, 10 a.m. – Nature Walk, Harrier Meadow, North Arlington
Wednesday April l 22, 10 a.m. – Earth Day Nature Walk, DeKorte Park, Lyndhurst
Sunday May 3, 10 a.m. – Nature Walk, Losen Slote Creek Park, Little Ferry
Saturday May 9, 10 a.m. – Boating Safety Day, River Barge Park, Carlstadt
Sunday May 10, 10 a.m. – Mother’s Day Nature Walk, Ridgefield Nature Center, Ridgefield
Tuesday May 19, Nature Walk – DeKorte Park, Lyndhurst
Thursday May 21, 7 p.m. – Conserve Wildlife Foundation Osprey Talk