CANCELLED DUE TO WEATHER-Sterne's Volunteer Work Day

Fri January 25, 2019


Join us for the first workday of 2019!  The weather will be extra cold but we'll be warm working beside the fire.  Note we're starting an hour early this month. 


Spend some time outdoors and help make a great park even better.  Volunteer at Sterne’s Woods & Fen on Sunday, January 27th from 8-10AM. NOTE THE EARLIER START TIME THIS MONTH ONLY.  We will be stacking and burning invasive buckthorn on the fen.  We will take a short hike over the frozen fen to our worksite near the artificial pond.


Don't wear anything nice!  There will be bonfire sparks that can burn holes in clothes, especially synthetics like polyester.  Cotton works well.  Dress in layers so you can adjust to the heat of the fire and the winter weather.


We meet once a month at Sterne's outdoor pavilion, 5617 Hillside Dr.  Volunteers have a chance to learn about restoration ecology and what makes Sterne’s special.  Bring a waterbottle and a pair of work gloves.  The park district will supply tools, and I will bring treats.  Email Brice Alt, volunteer site steward, to receive updates:  The next several volunteer dates are:   Feb 24, March 24, and April 28.



Sterne’s Woods & Fen became an Illinois State Nature Preserve in 1994 to preserve and protect its unique ecology.  A fen is a rare type of wetland in which cold groundwater that is high in calcium and magnesium seeps to the surface.  The unique water chemistry supports plants that grow nowhere else.  Sterne’s Fen is home to at least 10 rare or endangered plant species.  The surrounding parkland acts as a buffer to the fen and includes prairie, oak savanna, and flatwood ecosystems.  Every one of those ecosystems can benefit from the efforts of volunteers.  Join us once a month and learn about them!



We've applied for a $4,000 Community Stewardship Challenge Grant from the Illinois Clean Energy Foundation.  We need to document 400 volunteer hours over 18 months to earn the grant.  Much thanks to the groups who have volunteered with us at Sterne's: MUDD, the Silver and Sleepy Hollow Creeks Watershed Coalition, the Environmental Defenders of McHenry County, the BREAK, Jacobs High School Interact, Girl Scout Troop 888, Cub Scout Pack 156, and Boy Scout Troops 158 and 368.



For an update on the recent restoration project at Sterne's Fen:

Who was Ted Sterne?  The Crystal Lake Historical Society article:



By volunteering at a Sterne's workday you're helping with the ecologic restoration of an exceedingly rare type of habitat. 

To learn more about restoration ecology, here's a quick video: