Grant Funds Extend Conservation Education into Valparaiso Schools

Grant-Funds-Extend-Conservation-Education-into-Valparaiso-SchoolsThe Izaak Walton League of America - Porter County Chapter has been holding their free Family Nature Nights in Duneland schools for years. Family Nature Nights allow families to creatively explore aspects of ecology. By spraying a model city with water "run-off" we understand what effects it has beyond the gutter, or by examining macroinvertebrates we can figure out how healthy a river is. Holding snakes and meeting a screech owl is a popular part of the fun too.

20+ exhibitors delight with hands-on experiences that teach conservation. Now, thanks to grant dollars from The Coastal Grant & the Izaak Walton National Endowment matching grant, IWLA-PCC is able to extend their educational programming and offer these events to Valparaiso schools also. Approximately 150 families came out to Thomas Jefferson School on Thursday, October 20 for their first Family Nature Night and Cooks Corners Elementary School of Valpo will have its first Nature Night on November 3.

Event planners Bonnie and Susan Swarner garnered the grant dollars that also help IWLA-PCC host public conservation education events like the group's 'Conservation Corner' at the Porter County Fair, Naturepalooza at Rogers Lakewood and Porter County Museum's Earth Day celebration.

The Ikes are defenders of soil, air, wood, water & wildlife; they maintain wild spaces for the enjoyment of future generations. Their Porter County acres are set-aside for migratory bird habitat, quality deer management, wetland restoration, education access, nature playgrounds, reintroduction of fish and wildlife, and so much more! See them on or visit their webpage at