The Great Backyard Bird Count
February 18, 9:30-11:30 a.m.
Every February since 1998 the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and National Audubon Society has organized a worldwide 4-day Great Backyard Bird Count. Its purpose is to create a snap shot of the distribution and abundance of birds. The count was the first online citizen-science project to collect data, and display the results in near real-time. You too can participate during one or more days and Stratford will help you get started. Attend our workshop and learn to identify the typical birds found at your feeder, and how to register and log your data. Practice your new skills at our feeders and in our nature preserve, and help record the findings. Bring binoculars if possible.
Suggested donation of $5 or a bag of bird seed.
Maple Sugar Tours
February 18 & 25, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
Discover the wonder of this local Ohio natural food. Join our experienced Sugar Cookers for a hands-on experience in the sugar bush. Learn how to tap a maple tree, help collect sap, experience the evaporation process in the sugar shack, while spending time in Stratford’s beautiful forest! Tours begin every half hour from 10am to Noon. $4 per person. Register at www.stratfordecologicalcenter.org.
Pre-Season Beekeeping Overview
February 25, March 11 & 25
Start the year with this 3 class series that covers basic honey bee biology and how to use bee biology to develop better beekeeping management practices. Classes are on selected Saturdays in February and March for a total of 9 hours of classes. $120 per person. Call 740-363-2548 to register. For more Stratford Apiary information and Beekeeper Training programs visit http://stratfordecologicalcenter.org/apiarybees/.
Maple Sugar Pancake Breakfast
March 4, 8 a.m.-1 p.m.
Spring has sprung, the sap is flowing, bring your family out to celebrate the season at Stratford! Start the day with a farm fresh breakfast of home-made whole wheat pancakes, Stratford sausage and local maple syrup. Then enjoy a hike along the creek to the sugar shack learning all about the sugaring process. Don’t forget to visit the farm animals. There may be a new lamb in the barn! Seatings every hour 8 a.m.-Noon. $10 per adult, $5 per child (2-12). Advanced registration required, register at www.stratfordecologicalcenter.org.
Vernal Pool Monitoring
March 17 at 6:45 p.m.; April 7 at 7 p.m.
Put on your mud boots and grab your flashlight! It’s time for the spring awakening in the wetlands. Bring the whole family for a night hike to the vernal pool, listen for mating calls and look for salamanders, frogs and egg masses. You will be participating in a state-wide preservation effort of one of Ohio’s disappearing ecosystem. $5 per family or $3 per person.
4th Friday of each month, 6:30-8 p.m.
Explore literary works in a lively discussion on topics ranging from agriculture, nature writers and homesteading. If you would like to learn more about available books related to a particular subject, librarian Liz Barker will help you discover a treasure of great reading. For monthly topics visit www.stratfordecologicalcenter.org. No registration needed, $10 for year, first time free.
Herbal Study Group
2nd Tuesday of each month, 1- 3 p.m.
This participant–led group has members well versed in the knowledge and use of herbs. During the December in-home luncheon members brainstorm to create the following year’s monthly programs. The group maintains Stratford’s herb garden during the meeting, gaining valuable hands-on experience. Members share in the harvest from the garden. Whether a new herbalist or a pro, all are made welcome. No registration needed, $10 for the year, first time free.
Story Time on the Farm
2nd Tuesday of each month (March-November), 10-11 a.m.
Join other families on the farm for a fun and educational hour of storytelling and a unique hands-on experience based on the seasonal happenings around the farm. Families are invited to pack a picnic to enjoy after the story hour. No registration required, $5 per family.
Stratford Photography Club
3rd Thursday of each month, 1-3 p.m.
Calling all photography enthusiasts to become members of our photography club. Monthly meetings will provide an opportunity to share photos and knowledge, learn techniques from local experts, and photograph landscapes, animals, gardens and more. All skill levels welcome! Bring your camera, even if it’s your phone, and wander the fields and forest of Stratford to capture the abundant beauty of the seasons. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to rsvp or call 740-363-2548. $20 for the year, first visit free.
Register at www.stratfordecologicalcenter.org.