Bernheim offers fun to explore the outdoors throughout the month
Spring is almost here, and Bernheim offers many opportunities to enjoy the longer days and the warmer weather. From ECO Kids programs to hiking and driving tours, visitors can celebrate the first signs of spring in a variety of ways.
Events and programming for all ages throughout the month of March are listed below.
First Sunday Nature Hike
Join a Bernheim Volunteer Naturalist at the Visitor Center on Sunday, March 1, from 2 to 3 p.m. for an engaging 45-to-60 minute nature walk. Registration is not required for this free event and all ages are welcome. Participants are encouraged to wear comfortable walking shoes.
Lunch & Learn: Signs of Spring
Join in the fun of seeking out spring’s first flowers and swollen tree buds on a sunny woodland slope at the Bernheim Lunch & Learn program from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, March 4. Hosted by Volunteer Naturalist Corinne Mastey, each program includes group introductions, a short hike and lunch from Isaac’s Café.
The cost is $15 for Bernheim members and $20 for non-members. Registration and payment are due by 4 p.m. the day prior to the program by calling (502) 955-8512 or visiting Bernheim.org.
Pollywog Play Parties: Our Friendly Trees
Bernheim’s youngest visitors are invited to Our Friendly Trees at the Pollywog Play Party on Saturday, March 7, from 10:30 a.m. to noon at the Education Center. Early learners (infants to five-year-olds) will have fun discovering the friendly nature of trees through bark rubbings, needle painting, wood building and much more. Pollywog Play Parties combine music, art, language and outside play to encourage children to learn about nature.
Registration is required by 4 p.m. on the day prior to the program by calling (502) 955-8512 or visiting Bernheim.org. The cost is $10 for Bernheim members and $15 for non-members. The fee covers one caregiver and one child.
ECO Kids Discovery Days
The E-C-O stands for Every Child Outside, and that’s exactly where kids can be found during ECO Kids Discovery Days. Discovery Days take place the first and third Saturday of each month at Bernheim’s Visitor Center and include:
On Your Own Challenge from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Discovery Stations from 1 to 4 p.m.
Hike of the Day led by a Bernheim guide, starts at the Visitor Center at 2 p.m. and runs 45 to 60 minutes.
Children and their families are invited to Cool Conifers on Saturday, March 7. Conifers, special cone-bearing trees with needle and scale-like leaves, can be found throughout the arboretum. Kids and their families will have fun locating these trees and then exploring Discovery Stations and the Hike of the Day during the afternoon.
On Saturday, March 21, join Bernheim for a Spring Lookout. Children will investigate springtime clues in the day’s On Your Own Challenge and then explore hands-on Discovery Stations and the guided hike of the day in the afternoon.
For details on ECO Kids Discovery Days, call (502) 955-8512 or visit Bernheim.org.
Bernheim at Night
Bernheim at Night programs provide ample opportunities to marvel at the moon, ponder distant planets and be awed by the vastness of space. Something new yet ancient appears in the heavens and on earth with each turn of the season.
Full “Crow” Moon Hike
Join Bernheim on Monday, March 9, from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. in a Full “Crow” Moon Hike. Full Moon programs weave together stories about night ecology, moon lore, history and the magic of nature at night.
Creatures of the Night: Woodcocks
Experience the sights and sounds that often go unnoticed on Friday, March 20, from 7:15 to 9:45 p.m. with the Creatures of the Night: Woodcocks event. Journey with Bill Napper and fellow Volunteer Naturalists on a driving tour into sections of Bernheim where crepuscular and nocturnal creatures are most active. This program includes a small amount of hiking through easy terrain of Bernheim.
All Bernheim at Night programs are $10 for members and $12 for non-members. Groups meet at the Garden Pavilion unless otherwise noted at bernheim.org. Registration and payment are required by 4 p.m. on the day prior to the program. Visit Bernheim.org or call (502) 955-8512 to reserve a spot. Space is limited for events and pets are not allowed.
Bernheim Birds & Conservation
Join Bernheim on Thursday, March 12, from 6 – 7:30 p.m. at J&H Lanmark Outdoor store in Lexington with Bernheim Director of Conservation, Andrew Berry, and Natural Areas Manager, Evan Patrick. The duo will discuss Bernheim’s ongoing bird research, including the pair of golden eagles Bernheim tracks during their migrations to and from Canada and the newly installed Motus bird tracking system. Bernheim will also share information about its land stewardship efforts over the last 91 years and strategy for the future, as large forest blocks like Bernheim become increasingly important for clean air, water, and more.
The talk is free and open to the public.
Forest Homeschool Hike: Ecosystems
On Wednesday, March 18, from 1 to 2 p.m., Bernheim takes homeschool to the woods, offering opportunities for homeschool families and co-ops to join Bernheim educators for an afternoon of learning, exercising and adventure. Appropriate for grades K-5, each Forest Homeschool Hike will include a short lesson followed by a hike that will bring the lesson to life.
Registration and payment are required by 4 p.m. on the day prior to the program. Visit Bernheim.org or call (502) 955-8512 to reserve a spot.
The cost for Bernheim members is $5 a student and $7 a student for non-members. There is no fee for adults. Children must be accompanied by an adult.
Want to give back while having fun in the great outdoors? Volunteers can give a few hours or several hundred hours, providing support to Bernheim and our visitors. Take the first step in becoming a Bernheim volunteer by attending this general orientation on Saturday, March 21 from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. Sign up at Bernheim.org.
NAI Certified Interpretive Guide Training
Why not branch out this spring and become a Certified Interpretive Guide (CIG)? Led by Bernheim’s award-winning Interpretive Programs Manager Wren Smith, the National Association for Interpretation CIG training from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday, March 27, Saturday, March 28, and Sunday, March 29, will help participants gain skills and become more confident in creating and presenting programs, hikes, and other presentations. This certification program recognizes individuals who exhibit knowledge and skills necessary to assure quality interpretive services to all audiences. The goal of the program is to provide consistent, high quality training for staff and volunteers. Those interested can register at Bernheim.org in the Programs and Events section.
Early spring is one of the best times to explore Bernheim’s backcountry, and that’s just what visitors can do in this five-hour driving tour from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday, March 29. A team of volunteer naturalists will lead the program and will allow for frequent stops in order to investigate nature up close. Participants should meet at the Visitor Center and bring a sack lunch and beverage.
Those interested in attending must register by 4 p.m. the day before the program by calling (502) 955-8512 or by visiting Bernheim.org. The cost is $20 for members and $30 for non-members. The program is for adults and children ages 8 and up.
Sneak Peek: Spring Break Adventure Week!
In conjunction with Spring Break from Monday, March 30 – Friday, April 3, Bernheim will offer a week of daily drop-in activities and guided programs to celebrate the nature and wonder of Bernheim. Self-guided activities for exploring the arboretum and natural areas will also be available.
DISCOVERY STATIONS: Daily 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.
GUIDED NATURE HIKES: Daily 2 – 3 p.m.
NATURE CONCERT: Wednesday April 1, 1 – 1:45 p.m.
Spring break activities are free and take place at Bernheim’s Visitor Center. Registration is not required for individuals or families, but groups of six or more should RSVP at least 48 hours in advance by contacting Dan Pascucci at firstname.lastname@example.org or (502) 955-8512.
Please note: Due to inventory, the Visitor Center will be open for information only (no gift shop purchases) until noon on Monday, March 2. Isaac’s Café will be open regular hours (11 a.m. – 4 p.m.), as will the Membership information desk (9 a.m. – 4 p.m.).
Starting March 9, Bernheim will be closing at the later time of 8 p.m.