Katherine Golden with a giant tortoise.
By Don Corrigan (Webster-Kirkwood Times)
IMAX Theatre presentations at the Saint Louis Science Center used to inspire Katherine Golden when she was younger to imagine herself as an explorer. Thanks to a National Geographic program for teachers, she no longer has to imagine.
Golden has returned from a trip to the Galápagos Islands, where she explored the islands’ marvels, courtesy of Linblad Expedition ships, including the National Geographic Explorer, National Geographic Endeavour II and the National Geographic Sea Lion.
She saw the incredible tortoises and the vast diversity of plant and animal species, many found nowhere else in the world. She saw the creatures Charles Darwin discovered in 1835, which played a role in his formulations for the scientific theory of evolution.
“The trip taught me so much about seeing things as an explorer would, about the importance of place, and about the power of storytelling,” Golden said.
“Now I want to share my stories with other teachers, which is part of the responsibility for educators chosen for the National Geographic Grosvenor Teacher fellowships,” she explained.
Photo by Holly Shanks.
The city of St. Charles is celebrating its 250th anniversary this year! The Lewis and Clark Expedition will be the main focus of the celebrations taking place.
History runs deep on the shores of the Missouri River in St. Charles. Looks like 2019 will be a great year to visit St. Charles and learn about famous visitors in Missouri’s history. Did you know the first Missouri State Capital building was located in St. Charles? Want to learn more about the Lewis and Clark Expedition? Visit St. Charles and see the Lewis and Clark’s campsite, memorial statue and the Lewis & Clark Boathouse and Museum.
For more information, use the links below to find out more about this year’s celebrations. (At the end of this post see information for Don Corrigan’s new book – coming soon!)
There are over 80 public lakes comprising more than 1,200 acres of water in the St. Louis area. Photo provided by MDC.
UPDATE FROM MDC: “Fishin’ Hotspots of the St. Louis Area” program at Powder Valley Nature Center has been canceled due to unforeseen circumstances making the speaker unavailable. The program will be rescheduled at a later date. We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your support of conservation.
The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) continues its 50th anniversary of St. Louis urban fishing celebration with a special presentation at Powder Valley Nature Center in Kirkwood. The St. Louis lake fishing hotspots program will be held Friday, Feb. 22 starting at 7 p.m.
St. Louis has many quality lake and pond fishing opportunities, from rainbow and brown trout in winter months, to largemouth bass and channel catfish sure to give any angler’s line a workout in warmer months. Many St. Louis anglers may not know about them, however. There are more than 80 public lakes comprising more than 1,200 acres of water within a one-hour drive of the Gateway Arch.
MDC invites St. Louis-area anglers to learn about these overlooked St. Louis fishing holes with MDC Fisheries Management Biologist Kevin Meneau, who manages the urban fishing program.
Read more about the event and how to register below.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 7 released information for planned groundwater contamination testing at West Lake Landfill.
The “EPA is requiring the PRPs to perform the investigation to characterize the nature and extent of groundwater contamination from the site, pursuant to an enforceable agreement with EPA. Based on the results of this investigation, EPA will assess whether remedial measures are needed to protect and restore groundwater at the landfill boundary and beyond. If sampling results during the OU-3 RI/FS indicate that action under Superfund law is appropriate, it will be addressed by a future OU-3 Record of Decision.”
For the full press release read more below.
Membership in The Green Dining Club offers members exclusive discounts at a variety of local restaurants! (See the restaurant listing here.)
Here is what the Green Dining Alliance (GDA) website says about how your membership will help the local St. Louis area:
“Support the GDA by joining the Green Dining Club… Club members receive a set of bamboo cutlery, offers for exclusive discounts at select GDA member restaurants, discounts at St. Louis Earth Day events, and email blasts about food and sustainability news in the Saint Louis area!
Membership is $45 annually – your investment helps the GDA provide education, resources and training to restaurants and diners about sustainable practices – including recycling, composting, sourcing local ingredients, energy reduction strategies, and eliminating Styrofoam!”
For more information, or the link to join The Green Dining Club, CLICK HERE.
Photo by MDC Staff, courtesy Missouri Department of Conservation.
Read the Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) story of how the Urban Fishing Program (UFP) began and how the positive influence of the outdoors was a resounding success in our urban communities.
This year marks the 50th anniversary of the MDC Urban Fishing Program. MDC plans to spend 2019 celebrating and invites metro area anglers to join in.
The UFP was originally initiated in 1969 by the federal government during a time when civil unrest was causing tensions in many cities across the country. Their goal was to bring close-to-home fishing to people and infuse a positive influence into urban communities. The program launched in six cities, including St. Louis with the cooperation of MDC and the St. Louis Parks and Recreation Department. It was a resounding success in the Gateway City. MDC took over the UFP in 1972 and eventually expanded it into St. Louis County and Kansas City.
Don Corrigan has an opinion on “The Wall.” No, not the wall proposed along the Mexico border, but a wall proposed in Illinois.
By Don Corrigan (Webster-Kirkwood Times)
It’s time to seize the day and build the wall. Not the wall that Mexico was supposed to pay for at our southern border, but a wall to stop invading Asian Carp from traveling up our Mississippi and Illinois rivers into the Great Lakes.
The multi-million dollar wall would be built underwater near Joliet, Illinois, to keep the Asian carp from swimming into Lake Michigan near Chicago. There are fears the invading carp would make a home in the Great Lakes, including that big lake they call Gitche Gumee.
Around these parts, I have seen Asian carp establish themselves in the lakes we call Simpson, Unger, Creve Coeur, as well as in the Meramec River. During our annual 500-year floods, I have seen hordes of Asian carp kissing the surface scum in the Meramec River tributaries at lovely Emmenegger Park.
Asian carp take over wherever they invade. It’s estimated that they now make up more than 60 percent of the fish bio-mass in the Illinois River. Scientists say if these voracious fish enter our Great Lakes, they could ruin prized fresh water angling and wipe out the region’s $7 billion fishing industry.
Photo: Webster-Kirkwood Times
By Don Corrigan (Webster-Kirkwood Times)
Snow is not just for shoveling. Dr. Richard Walters of Webster Groves wants those who loathe the snow to take a new, close-up look at the white stuff. He makes it easy with his snowflake photography exhibit.
His prints on display at the Webster Groves Public Library this January offer an array of snow crystals, including needles, bullets, plates and rare capped columns. Of course, there also are the typical six-armed stellar forms that we all associate with snowflakes.“I’m into details and there’s a lot of work and care that goes into capturing the details of snowflakes,” explained Walters. “For one thing, you have to hold your breath to keep the crystals from melting and distorting when you are shooting them.”
The 2015 Maple Sugar Festival.
The Missouri Department of Conservation has announced Rockwoods Reservation’s Maple Sugar Festival!
Just because the temperatures drop, doesn’t mean you have to stay inside! There are many fun activities to do during winter, like maple sugaring, hiking, camping, bird-watching, outdoor photography, and fishing to name a few.
MDC and local partnering organizations will help uncover the many different outdoor activities you can do in winter, along with information about how animals weather the season as well. It’s a day your whole family will enjoy!
Read more about the event from the MDC below.
The Mark Twain Birthplace State Historic Site has an exciting new exhibit on display. To protect Mark Twain’s first edition books from overexposure to light and stress on delicate spines, the museum is introducing a rotating display of Twain’s books. The plans are to spotlight just one of the author’s books at a time and to change the exhibit twice a year.
The new exhibit features the time-travel novel “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court,” published in 1889. This book is often called the last of Mark Twain’s best works. It features a man from 19th century New England (Mark Twain’s home at the time) traveling back in time to 6th century England. The hero confronts and tries to change a medieval world ruled by a king and his nobles and a wily magician named Merlin.
Read more from the Missouri State Parks information release below.