KIRKWOOD, Mo.--The Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) Powder Valley Nature Center is hosting a program that will empower visitors with new skills to discover nature in a safe responsible way. Into the Woods is free family event being held at the nature center Saturday, Oct. 14 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
“It’s all about helping people to discover nature with confidence so they can have more adventures outdoors,” said MDC Naturalist Rebecca Rodriguez.
Educational stations at the event will feature opportunities for participants to learn how to identify poisonous plants and venomous animals they could encounter in nature, and tips on preventing potential problems. Visitors will also discover ingenious ways to start a fire, including flint striking techniques to using transistor batteries and steel wool. Skills for navigating the outdoors will be demonstrated using both traditional compass and modern GPS units, along with fun geocaching exercises.
Other stations will demonstrate useful outdoor skills like identifying trees, and what and how to pack a backpack for a safe hike in the woods.
Partners from local police and fire departments will be on hand with outdoor safety information. Local search and rescue organization, Tri-SAR, will give presentations at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. on what children should do if they find themselves lost in the woods.
“All ages are invited and there’s something for everyone at this event, including the very young ones,” Rodriguez said.
One attraction will be Powder Valley’s popular mud pile, which offers kids a chance to get dirty and have some back-to-nature fun. It provides a safe space for young children to play in the mud and dirt, while parents can learn about the many benefits of unstructured play and re-connecting children with the natural world. Bringing towels and a change of clothes is recommended.
Into the Woods requires no reservations to attend. Powder Valley Conservation nature Center is located in Kirkwood at 11715 Cragwold Road, near the intersection of I-270 and I-44. For more information, call 314-301-1500. To discover more free MDC events, go to https://goo.gl/VFvW6T.