Open House, Sip ‘N Hike, The Hillside Hustle, & fun, seasonal activities for kids
With the holidays just around the corner, the Bernheim calendar is full of events to celebrate with nature this December. Except for Christmas Day, Bernheim is open the entire month with activities for every age.
There are several special events at Bernheim this month to help everyone get in the holiday spirit!
Bernheim’s Holiday Open House takes place on Saturday, Dec. 7, from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. at the Visitor Center. Kick off the holiday season with shopping, live music and refreshments. Visitors can find a special gift for the nature lover in their life from beautiful handmade birdhouses to nature books and many more unique items from the Gift Shop. Bring a friend and enjoy a delightful lunch at Isaac’s Café. There is no fee for this event, but there is a $10 per car recommended donation at the front gate for non-members.
The Hillside Hustle
Work off those holiday meals with a brisk run through the beautiful hills of Bernheim in The Hillside Hustle on Dec. 7 starting at 8 a.m. The Hillside Hustle is a 5k, 10k and trail half marathon with proceeds benefiting The Home of the Innocents. Flex Appeal and Bernheim Forest host the race. Registration is $85 for the half marathon trail race, $45 for the 10K and $35 for the 5K. All distance races will begin at 8 a.m. Register online at HillsideHustle.com.
Holiday Wreath Making
Decorating for the holidays can be fun, easy, and inexpensive when using found objects in nature. Visitors can make their own wreath on Dec. 7, from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. with Holiday Wreath Making. All materials will be collected from Bernheim, and supplies and tools will be provided.
The cost for Bernheim Members is $40 and $50 for non-members. Registration and payment are due by 4 p.m. the day before. Call (502) 955-8512 or visit Bernheim.org to register.
Continue the festivities on Saturday, Dec. 7, with the Sip ‘N Hike from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. Join a Volunteer Naturalist for a relaxed two-mile guided hike while sipping a refreshing beer.
Hikers will enjoy three beer stops along the trail compliments of West Sixth Brewing, and food will be available at the end of the hike. Sippers and hikers will have the opportunity to receive special offers and shop with outdoor retailers such as KEEN and Quest Outdoors. All minors must be accompanied by an adult 21 years or older. The Sip ‘N Hike event will happen rain or shine, and pets are not allowed. The cost for Bernheim members is $35, and for non-members is $45. Call (502) 955-8512 or visit Bernheim.org for more information and to register.
There are many more ways to celebrate the season at Bernheim during December. See below for more information on these nature-filled events and other activities throughout the month.
First Sunday Nature Hike
Meet a Volunteer Naturalist at the Visitor Center on Sunday, Dec. 1, from 2 – 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: Hidden in the Hollies
Meet Volunteer Naturalist, Corinne Mastey from 10:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 4 at the Visitor Center and celebrate the holiday season with a visit to Bernheim’s renowned holly collection. Participants will learn of the legends and lore growing inside Bernheim’s hollies.
Bernheim Lunch & Learn programs are designed for those who enjoy spending time outdoors in the company of other adults who love learning about nature. Each program includes group introductions, a short themed hike, and a fabulous lunch from Isaac’s Café.
Registration and payment are due the day before the event at 4 p.m., and the cost is $15 for Bernheim members and $20 for non-members. Call (502) 955-8512 or visit Bernheim.org for more information and to register.
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. – 4:30 p.m.
Discovery Stations from 1 – 4 p.m.
Hike of the Day led by a Bernheim guide, starts at the Visitor Center at 2 p.m. and runs 45 – 60 minutes.
Children and their families are invited to Nature Ornament Making on Saturday, Dec. 7. Use the day’s On Your Own Challenge to transform nuts, seedpods, pinecones and other nature treasures into holiday ornaments.
The fun continues on Saturday, Dec. 21 when families are invited to Bernheim for a Hot Chocolate Hike. Participants can earn a free cup of hot chocolate by completing the On Your Own Challenge and then turning it in at Isaac’s Café. During the afternoon, kids will enjoy exploring hands-on Discovery Stations and the guided Hike of the Day.
Pollywog Play Party: Keeping Cozy for Winter
Brrr! How do people and animals keep warm during the cold months? Pollywogs (infants to five-year-olds) are invited to the Education Center on Saturday, Dec. 7, from 10:30 a.m. – Noon to find out and enjoy a morning of great fun. Early learners will participate in Keeping Cozy for Winter, where they will explore winter survival strategies by comparing fur and feathers, snoozing in the hibernation cave, making bird feeders and more. Pollywog Play Parties combine music, art, language and outside play to encourage infants and children through the age of five to learn about nature.
Registration for the Pollywog Play Party is required by 4 p.m. on the day prior to program by calling (502) 955-8512 or visiting Bernheim.org. The cost is $10 per child for Bernheim members and $15 per child for non-members. There is no fee for children under 18 months, but they must be registered. There is no fee for adults but they must accompany children.
Forest Homeschool Hike: Survival Strategies
Bernheim takes school to the forest on Wednesday, Dec. 11, from 1 – 2 p.m. On this hike, families and co-ops join educators for an afternoon of learning, exercising and adventure. Appropriate for grades K-5, each month’s Forest Homeschool Hike includes a short lesson followed by a hike that brings the lesson to life. December’s theme is Survival Strategies because to survive cold weather, animals must migrate, hibernate or stay active.
The cost for Bernheim members is $5 per student and for non-members is $7 per student. There is no fee for adults, but they must accompany children. Registration is required by 4 p.m. the day prior to the program. Call (502) 955-8512 or visit Bernheim.org. Space is limited.
Winter Star Stories and Sky Watch
Join Bernheim on Friday, Dec. 21, from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. and be enchanted with the stars in a special Winter Star Stories and Sky Watch. Join Volunteer Naturalists and the Louisville Astronomical Society (LAS) to see brilliant stars and constellations of winter through the telescopes provided by LAS. If overcast, a virtual astronomy program will be presented inside the Garden Pavilion. This program is for ages 8 and up. No pets allowed.
Bernheim at Night programs are $10 for Bernheim members and $12 for non-members. Registration for Bernheim at Night programs is required by 4 p.m. on the day prior to program by calling (502) 955-8512 or visiting Bernheim.org. Call (502) 955-8512 before 5 p.m. on the day of program for last-minute updates and changes due to weather.
Reminder: Bernheim Closed for Holiday
Please note that Bernheim will be closed on Monday, Dec. 25, in observance of the Christmas holiday, and will close at 2 p.m. on Dec. 24 and at 2 p.m. on Dec. 31.