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Astronomy Nights at Plains Conservation Center

Presented and Managed by the City of Aurora.

Come join the City of Aurora at the Plains Conservation Center for an exciting night of stars, planets, solar systems and s’mores. Each evening begins with a presentation by retired astronomy professor, Dr.Win Pendleton, including images of the stars and planets that make our solar system and universe unique. After Win discusses each night's topic we will venture outside for a campfire, s’mores and a chance to look at the planets and other objects through the telescope.

Each Astronomy night will have its own theme.

• October 26 at 7 p.m.: Hidden Gems of the Fall Sky

• December 7 at 6 p.m.: Wonders of the Winter Night Sky

The City of Aurora's Parks, Recreation & Open Space department's mission is to encourage active lifestyles and create healthy environments for people, nature and community.

Location: Plains Conservation Center, 21901 E. Hampden Avenue, Aurora, CO 80013

Bird Nerd Saturdays at Plains Conservation Center

Presented and Managed by the City of Aurora.

Join City of Aurora naturalists for a morning of birds and spectacular views at the Plains Conservation Center. Enjoy light refreshments while you socialize with other bird nerds before heading out onto the 1100-acre prairie with experienced naturalists to watch birds and other wildlife. Whether you are new to birding or a seasoned pro, this is a great opportunity to hang out with other bird enthusiasts.

The City of Aurora's Parks, Recreation & Open Space department's mission is to encourage active lifestyles and create healthy environments for people, nature and community.

Date: Select Saturdays

Time: 9 a.m.

Location: Plains Conservation Center, 21901 E. Hampden Avenue, Aurora, CO 80013

Cherokee Winter Nature Tour - At Cherokee Ranch and Castle

Those lucky enough to have hiked Cherokee Ranch know that there are a wealth of habitats and a rich flora that distract your eyes downwards, even as the vistas of the rugged backbone of the Rockies and distant misty towers of downtown Denver tempt you to look further away. We have experienced toasty winter days that were breathless and surprisingly sunny, as well as blustery days in the summer. One thing is for sure—you will never be bored on a Cherokee hike! This year we are starting much earlier—for better birding. But the plants will already be awake!

 

Whoever says winter is the “dormant” season? Wise naturalists know that nature does not sleep, you can now SEE those birds flitting in the bare branches. Buds are set on everything, and there is much more than just bark, branches and berries to liven a walk. You can see two species of Chickadees and Nuthatches that never stop in their search for food and there are a few last lingering hints of flowers. You will be surprised at how many evergreens there really are; not just pines and junipers and Oregon Grape, but many of our native shrubs and forbs keep living foliage and rosettes through the winter: they are still hard at work chlorophyll pumping! You might also be surprised to know that some Dark-eyed Juncos fly all the way from the Pacific Northwest and even Canada to winter at Cherokee. Other winter species include Flicker, Woodpeckers and a resident Red-tailed Hawk. What better time and place than Cherokee Ranch in the bright, winter light.

 

 

$20 member, $25 non-member.

 

Tour Guides: Panayoti Kelaidis and Lynn Willcockson

 

 

 

* Plants don’t really care how you dress for the field trips but BIRDS DO!! It is easier to see birds if you DO NOT wear white or other very bright colors –i.e. yellow, orange or red. Also, bring your binoculars: they can be used for both birds and plants

* Please wear comfortable shoes and bring your own supply of water for a 2 hour adventure

*Directions and details for your hike will be emailed to your email address approximately one week before your hike

 

 

Photography Expeditions at Plains Conservation Center

 

Photography expeditions to the Plains Conservation Center offer opportunities to capture the life and the seasonal characteristics of the prairie in the best light possible. Dates and times are set to coordinate with sunsets, sunrises, moonsets and moonrises with one exception in May to focus on spring flowers. Each expedition is led by David Winger, a renowned garden and nature photographer.

 

Open to all skill levels. Participants are encourage to bring a tripod and a telephoto lens and dress appropriately for the weather as the class takes place outdoors.

 

 

Price: $36, $34 member

Location: Plains Conservation Center, 21901 E. Hampden Avenue, Aurora, CO 80013

 

 

 

Plains Conservation Center Wagon Tour

Get to know the prairie in a whole new way. On our ride across the plains, participants watch for wildlife in the landscape, from prairie dogs to pronghorn antelope and birds of prey, beneath the great stretching sky while learning about the short grass prairie ecosystem along the way. With stops at the sod homes and Cheyenne camp, your group will experience what it was like to be a homesteader and a Cheyenne Indian living on the prairie in the 1800's. Take a guided tour of the sod homestead and see the sod homes, schoolhouse and blacksmith shop. Then visit the Cheyenne camp to learn about how the Cheyenne lived on the prairie and followed the bison as a seminomadic tribe.

Please note: Tours are weather dependent. If a tour is cancelled due to weather, you will be contacted.

Date: Select Saturdays

Time: 10:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Location: Plains Conservation Center, 21901 E. Hampden Avenue, Aurora, CO 80013

 

 

The Art and Science of Raising What You Eat

Presented and managed by the City of Aurora

Cows, sheep and chickens, oh my! The Plains Conservation Center is home to a variety of farm animals including donkeys, sheep, chickens and turkeys. Join us for an exciting adventure where you can meet and help feed these amazing creatures! Learn how vital they were for pioneer life on the plains and how important they are for us today.

Programs occur daily, Monday-Friday at 11:30 a.m., Saturday-Sunday at 3 p.m.

Program will begin at the sod village, which is 1/2 mile hike from the parking lot. Arrive early to allow yourself time to walk, program will begin promptly.

The City of Aurora Parks, Recreation & Open Space Department's mission is to encourage active lifestyles and create healthy environments for people, nature and community.

Location: Plains Conservation Center, 21901 E. Hampden Avenue, Aurora, CO 80013

Price: $5 adult, $3 child (12 and under)

 

 

Treat Yourself Tuesdays - Holiday From Days Long Past - At Cherokee Ranch and Castle

 

Cherokee Ranch and Castle welcomes you to a delightful holiday celebration! Tour the castle in all its holiday splendor explore traditions from years long ago. Create a decoration for your home and sample old European fare while listening to festive music.

Price: $55, $50 members, includes all materials

Instructor: Jeannine Colley

Location:

Cherokee Ranch and Castle

6113 N Daniels Park RD

Sedalia, CO 80135

 

Treat Yourself Tuesdays - Tibetan Singing Bowls - At Cherokee Ranch and Castle

 

Enjoy a day of healing vibrations. This class includes a mixture of sound healing tools including crystals and Tibetan singing bowls to balance the body, mind and emotions. Subtle movement and breath work connects our personal frequency, allowing us to tune in and move to stillness as you are surrounded by the vibrations of singing bowls.  

 

Price: $45, $40

Instructor: Emma Kelleher

Special Instructions:

Bring a mat or comfortable seat for this concert of vibrations & sound.

 

Location:

Cherokee Ranch and Castle

6113 N Daniels Park RD

Sedalia, CO 80135

 

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