August Update: Nature Programs &Etc in Cambridge



Dave Brown Wildlife Walk

1-3 p.m. Join Tracker-naturalist David Brown, who conducted a pair of wildlife surveys in the park a decade ago,on a wildlife walk on the North trail of the Alewife Reservation.  No Cost, All Ages welcome.

Getting Ready to Honk!

3–5 p.m. Join Ranger Jean Rogers and Julie Croston at Fresh Pond Reservation to make dragonfly (Wandering Glider) and damselfly (Blue Fronted Dancer) wings, or an algae hand-puppet, to wear in the Fresh Pond Creatures Contingent at the Honk! Parade on October 13th. For families with ages 5-11; rain or shine. Meet at Fresh Pond Reservation Ranger Station. Offered by Friends of Fresh Pond Reservation and Tobin Friends of Fresh Pond.



Cambridge Residents: Appeal to City Council for Silver Maple Forest funds

6 p.m.  Join Friends of Alewife Reservation’s Quinton Zondervan at Cambridge City Hall, Sullivan Chamber to support this appeal for funds from the Community Preservation Act.



Telling Your Natural Story: A Storytelling Workshop

1–3:30 p.m. Come take a short walk with Ranger Jean to learn the stories of nature at Fresh Pond, and then, over tea and cookies, storyteller Amy Tighe will show you how to create and share your own stories. Register at



A Fresh Pond Reservation Walkabourt

6–7:30 p.m.  Take a walking tour of recently restored areas at Fresh Pond Reservation and learn about both ongoing and future restoration projects. Watershed Manager Chip Norton will answer your questions about the past, present, and future of landscape management at Fresh Pond. Meet at Purification Facility front door, FPR.



Anne Marie Lambert Little RIver Nature Poetry Walk

3-5 p.m.  Join Belmont Citizen Forum guide Anne Marie Lambert, who has been leading groups since last year and enjoys sharing perspectives, history and wildlife information.




Botany Walk on Grasses and Sedges of Alewife Reservation with Walter Kittredge 

Meet at 1:00 p.m. at the lot on Acorn Park Drive, Cambridge., Mass., for this walk. Walter is Senior Curatorial Assistant at the Harvard University Herbaria, a worldwide research collection of over 5 million dried plant specimens. Walter is also the Assistant Curator of the New England Botanical Club Herbarium. Walter has 35 years experience as a botanist and 25 years experience as a Wetlands Delineator consultant. Walter is co-author with Bryan Hamlin of Changes in the Flora of the Middlesex Fells Reservation. Walter leads educational hikes on plant identification and ecology, and created a nature trail for the Dark Hollow Pond Trail which is now called Bear Hill Habitats, Current research focuses on documenting the largest trees of the Fells using the Eastern Native Tree Society methodology. Walter has participated in Biodiversity Days at various DCR properties, and conducts floristic inventories of conservation areas throughout eastern Massachusetts.

Cancelled in the event of rain. For more information please email



Online Class on Urban Agriculture through UMass

UMass is offering a 6-week online class called Urban Agriculture: Innovative Farming Systems for the 21st Century, beginning Monday, July 8.  This class earns 3 college credits and may count toward the Sustainable Food and Farming Online Certificate.  The instructor, Helena Farrell, has a Masters in Landscape Architecture from the University of Massachusetts and her course is well-grounded in permaculture principles.   The cost is $371/credit.  For more information, see: will learn about innovative production methods and critical social, economic, and environmental dimensions of modern day urban agriculture.  Multi-media presentations by the instructor, articles and videos online, and a custom, library research guide provide a strong foundation for students to investigate important topics and evaluate the performance of real life urban farm systems. The course will consist of readings, videos, quizzes, and research assignments in which students critically assess major strengths, weaknesses and issues of 21st century urban farm systems.



SUMMER BIRD WALK at Fresh Pond Reservation

7:30 to 9:30 am. Early morning is the best time to look for birds because they are most active when the air is cool and they are hungry for breakfast. We may find adults feeding babies in the nest and fledglings that are following their parents and begging for food.  As always, beginning birders are welcome.  We have binoculars to lend and will show you how to use them. You must register for parking and meeting place information E-mail or call 617-349-7712 and leave your name and phone number to register.


July 14


1 to 3 pm. Water Purification Facility parking lot, Fresh Pond Reservation, at the Volunteer Trailer
250 Fresh Pond Parkway
Join us as we start removing seed pods from this year’s crop of Fresh Pond’s most invasive vine. We’ll work along the Pond fence digging it up where we can, and picking pods where we can’t dig. Tools and training provided. To join us, e-mail Katie at or call
617-349-7712. Co-sponsored by Cambridge Pod Patrol, a public education campaign to spread the word (not the weed) about black swallowwort in Cambridge.


July 15

UPPER WATERSHED NATURE WALK (transport to and from Cambridge provided)

6 to 7:30 pm
Water Purification Facility front door
250 Fresh Pond Parkway
Landscape architects at Bioengineering Group will introduce you to the unique habitats found on Cambridge-owned land in the Upper Watershed.  Find out where your water comes from and discover new places to explore.  Transportation provided to registered participants; call 617-349-7712 or email

Saturday and Sunday

JULY 20/21

First Outdoors Family Camping Weekend, at Otter River State Forest, Baldwinville, Mass.

These weekend experiences are designed for families who are new to camping and families of all kinds are welcome! Depending on the location, activities may include: Camping Fundamentals, Nature Walks & Plant Identification, Fishing, Archery, Nature Center Exploration, Live Animal Program, Outdoor Cooking and an Evening Campfire Program.  Registration information is here on the  Department of Conservation and Recreation. Registration preference will be for those families who are new to this program.  Additional dates for this program are below:

July 27 & 28 — Harold Parker State Forest, Andover


July 29

WATER QUALITY MONITORING at Fresh Pond Reservation

6 to 7:30 pm
Water Purification Facility front door
250 Fresh Pond Parkway
Learn about the Cambridge Watershed system and the Water Quality Monitoring Program with Watershed Supervisor David Kaplan.  Find out about the parameters measured and what they tell us about the water quality.  Check out some of the tools and techniques used for sampling water collected from reservoirs and tributaries for laboratory analysis.

August 3 & 4 — Nickerson State Park, Brewster

August 10 & 11 — Tolland State Forest, Otis



image descriptionDaylight Moonlight: Nature Storytime with Children’s Author and Artist, Matt Patterson


Join the Harvard Museum of Natural History in Cambridge, Mass.,  for a special Nature Storytime with children’s author and artist, Matt Patterson, who will read from his newest book, Daylight Moonlight. This beautifully illustrated book provides a fun way for children to learn about the animals that populate different habitats by day and by night. Matt has painted 22 scenes of the forest, desert, underwater, seashore, wetlands, grasslands, mountains, public parks, and even his own backyard. (Copies of Matt’s book will be available for purchase in the Museum gift shop.)

The museum has many other good programs going on this summer.


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