Polk County Conservation

Senior Programs and Trips

OWLS having lunch at the Lodge
Click here for a Desk Aid on how to register for a public program or event.
OWLS - Older, Wiser, Livelier, Seniors

Looking for an excuse to get out of the house, make some new friends, enjoy a good meal and learn about the exciting world of nature? Then join us!

These programs are held the first Tuesday of each month. The nature program will start at 11:00 a.m. at the Jester Park Lodge. An optional luncheon follows the program at noon in which pre-registration is required. Registration deadline for lunch is the Friday before the program. The cost of the catered lunch is $10.

Our State Fair – Iowa’s Blue Ribbon Story is the book that chronicles 150 years of Iowans who have collectively made up our unique August experience. You’ll discover a bit of yourself in their stories – from watching two locomotives collide in front of a packed Grandstand to riding the Roller Coaster or sneaking a smooch with your sweetheart while gliding through Ye Old Mill, from parading your Charolais around the ring to watching judges test your piecrust, from camping in Tent City to eating your noon meal beside your car. Author Mary Kay Shanley shares best-of-the-best tales, which are accompanied by a few of the book’s 500 brilliant photographs. There’ll be time for sharing because everybody has a great State Fair story to tell. Program sponsored by Humanities of Iowa. - See more at: http://www.mycountyparks.com/County/Polk/Park/Jester-Lewis-A-Park/Events/9366/O-W-L-S-Older-Wiser-Livelier-Seniors-Our-State.aspx#sthash.pEoLWYWQ.dpuf
Forget Recycling Often, Start Recycling Right!

March 5, 2019 - 11:00am - 12:00pm. Ammon Taylor, Municipal Marketing Manager for Waste Management, will discuss changes in the recycling industry and the need for continued education about what can or can’t be recycled. Register for lunch only; deadline is March 1. To register for lunch, click here.

Tropical Biodiversity: Why should we care?

April 2, 2019 - 11:00am - 12:00pm. The tropics are places of amazing beauty and biodiversity, filled with plants and animals exotic and fascinating to us.  Join Jim Pease as we explore a few of those places in this presentation and talk about why keeping them wild and diverse is important to us. Included will be photos from Costa Rica, Brazil, Ecuador, and more. Register for lunch only; deadline is March 29. To register for lunch, click here.

Birding in the Southwest

May 7, 2019 - 11:00am - 12pm. In late February and early March of 2018 Margaret and Ray Harden took a birding vacation to Arizona and New Mexico. In New Mexico they stopped at Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge and observed many species of waterfowl on the ponds and birds along the Rio Grande River. In Willcox, Arizona they saw thousands of Sandhill Cranes and in Tucson they spotted many birds in the desert of Saguaro National Park. They visited the birding hot spots nearby such as Ramsey Canyon, San Pedro River Reserve, and the hummingbird reserve in Patagonia. Register for lunch only; deadline is May 3. To register for lunch, click here.

Chichaqua BioBlitz

June 4, 2019 - 11:00am - 12:00pm. Chichaqua Bottoms Greenbelt with its myriad wetlands, grasslands and forests has long been known as an area of uncommon diversity.  In June 2018, a BioBlitz was conducted at Chichaqua Bottoms Greenbelt. Thirteen experts, representing Drake and all state universities as well as self-taught individuals, participated in the identification and mapping of species over a three-day period. We will share the findings of the Chichaqua BioBlitz and discuss their importance. We will also talk about a BioBlitz scheduled for Summer 2019 on a brand new Polk County Conservation landholding. Register for lunch only; deadline is May 31. To register for lunch, click here.

SEAGOING EASTER EGGS: How animal patterns influenced ship camouflage

July 2, 2019 - 11:00am - 12:00pm. This is a fast paced and often astonishing look at how the appearance of animals protects them from predators, and/or helps them otherwise in their on-going quest for survival. Varieties of animal concealment and deception are shown, as are the ways in which these findings were adapted for military purposes. Included are examples of colorfully-patterned WWI ship camouflage (called dazzle camouflage), which pundits at the time described as “seagoing Easter eggs." The presentation is enriched by an abundance of visual examples, both natural and military, from the most rarefied to common yet surprising forms that are found in the backyards of Iowa homes. The presenter has published four books and scores of articles on the art and science of camouflage. Register for lunch only; deadline is June 28. To register for lunch, click here.

The Wild World of Bromeliaceae

August 6, 2019 - 11:00am - 12:00pm. From pineapples to Spanish moss to carnivorous plants, the Bromeliaceae family is full of interesting and unique plants. Get to know this diverse family by exploring the different species, human uses and faunal interactions. Register for lunch only; deadline is August 2. To register for lunch, click here.

Senior Bus Tours (flyer)

Our State Fair – Iowa’s Blue Ribbon Story is the book that chronicles 150 years of Iowans who have collectively made up our unique August experience. You’ll discover a bit of yourself in their stories – from watching two locomotives collide in front of a packed Grandstand to riding the Roller Coaster or sneaking a smooch with your sweetheart while gliding through Ye Old Mill, from parading your Charolais around the ring to watching judges test your piecrust, from camping in Tent City to eating your noon meal beside your car. Author Mary Kay Shanley shares best-of-the-best tales, which are accompanied by a few of the book’s 500 brilliant photographs. There’ll be time for sharing because everybody has a great State Fair story to tell. Program sponsored by Humanities of Iowa. - See more at: http://www.mycountyparks.com/County/Polk/Park/Jester-Lewis-A-Park/Events/9366/O-W-L-S-Older-Wiser-Livelier-Seniors-Our-State.aspx#sthash.pEoLWYWQ.dpuf
Our State Fair – Iowa’s Blue Ribbon Story is the book that chronicles 150 years of Iowans who have collectively made up our unique August experience. You’ll discover a bit of yourself in their stories – from watching two locomotives collide in front of a packed Grandstand to riding the Roller Coaster or sneaking a smooch with your sweetheart while gliding through Ye Old Mill, from parading your Charolais around the ring to watching judges test your piecrust, from camping in Tent City to eating your noon meal beside your car. Author Mary Kay Shanley shares best-of-the-best tales, which are accompanied by a few of the book’s 500 brilliant photographs. There’ll be time for sharing because everybody has a great State Fair story to tell. Program sponsored by Humanities of Iowa. - See more at: http://www.mycountyparks.com/County/Polk/Park/Jester-Lewis-A-Park/Events/9366/O-W-L-S-Older-Wiser-Livelier-Seniors-Our-State.aspx#sthash.pEoLWYWQ.dpuf
Learning how to carefully spot and identify nests is a challenge welcomed by a growing number of experienced and beginning birders alike. From huge platform nests located high in trees to neatly woven cup nests hidden in the grass, the amazing diversity of nests nearly matches the diversity of the birds themselves. Join Iowa DNR biologist Bruce Ehresman as he discusses nest sites, nest types, and nest materials of birds in Iowa and beyond. Bruce will show how this information can help a keen observer determine the type of bird that made a particular nest - and how important those nesting aspects are to a bird's life cycle. In addition to photos, he will bring in various examples of nests for first-hand views. Bruce participated in both of Iowa’s Breeding Bird Atlases, during which time he spent several thousand hours locating nests across the state. He is excited to share what he has learned with others who appreciate wildlife. - See more at: http://www.mycountyparks.com/County/Polk/Park/Jester-Lewis-A-Park/Events/6785/OWLS-Bird-Nests-a-Tour-of-Avian-Architecture-a.aspx#sthash.PvLo6Y6Q.dpuf
Learning how to carefully spot and identify nests is a challenge welcomed by a growing number of experienced and beginning birders alike. From huge platform nests located high in trees to neatly woven cup nests hidden in the grass, the amazing diversity of nests nearly matches the diversity of the birds themselves. Join Iowa DNR biologist Bruce Ehresman as he discusses nest sites, nest types, and nest materials of birds in Iowa and beyond. Bruce will show how this information can help a keen observer determine the type of bird that made a particular nest - and how important those nesting aspects are to a bird's life cycle. In addition to photos, he will bring in various examples of nests for first-hand views. Bruce participated in both of Iowa’s Breeding Bird Atlases, during which time he spent several thousand hours locating nests across the state. He is excited to share what he has learned with others who appreciate wildlife. - See more at: http://www.mycountyparks.com/County/Polk/Park/Jester-Lewis-A-Park/Events/6785/OWLS-Bird-Nests-a-Tour-of-Avian-Architecture-a.aspx#sthash.PvLo6Y6Q.dpuf

Contact Us

Administration Office
12130 NW 128th St
Granger, IA 50109

P: (515) 323-5300
F: (515) 323-5354
pccb_info@polkcountyiowa.gov

Monday – Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

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