Fall Color Tram Tour of the Katy Trail, Oct. 19-20, 2022

Experience the dramatic scenery and fall colors along the Missouri River bluffs during the Fall Colors Tram Tours on Wednesday, Oct. 19 and Thursday, Oct. 20, 2022.

The two-hour, round-trip tours will take visitors on the Katy Trail between Rocheport and McBaine in the comfort of an open-air tram coach. This 9-mile section of the trail is known for its fall colors along the bluffs and striking views of the Missouri River. As riders enjoy the scenery, interpretive guides will explain the natural history and cultural features along the trail. The tours are free and open to the public, with a suggested donation of $5 for adults and $3 for children age 12 and under.

Tours will depart from Rocheport at 10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. on both days. Advance registration is required. To register, please call the Katy Trail State Park office at 573-449-7422 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, or register online HERE.

Each tour consists of six trams, with each tram providing seating for 20 people. In the event of inclement weather, the tours will be canceled.

The tours are cosponsored by Missouri State Parks and Boone Electric Cooperative.

Get Ready Bikers, Hikers and Runners: Walking & Biking Bridge Over Meramec River To Open Soon

Photo: Ursula Ruhl

By Don Corrigan

Bikers, hikers and runners in the area, particularly in Kirkwood, are chomping at the bit to use the new Interstate 44 bridge lane over the Meramec River.

The lane is dedicated for their use, but ramps and other infrastructure — also for their use — are still under construction.

“As a bicyclist myself, I am as excited as everybody else to use the new bridge,” said Kyle Henke, director of the city of Kirkwood’s Parks and Recreation Department. “I think it’s going to be incredible for those of us on the Kirkwood side of the Meramec River to have access to everything on the west side.”

Among the sites that will be available are those along the section of the Meramec Greenway Trail that stretches from Unger Park Lake on the north to the lake at George Winter Park on the south.

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MDC Grant Helps Purchase Track-Chairs for Missouri Disabled Sportsmen

With the help of a grant from the Missouri Department of Conservation, Missouri Disabled Sportsmen was able to acquire four new all-terrain track-chairs and an enclosed trailer. The chairs and trailer will allow MDS to expand services and opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts. Photo: MDC

Specialized track-chairs help the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) make nature and the outdoors more accessible to all outdoor enthusiasts. MDC recently awarded a grant to Missouri Disabled Sportsmen (MDS) to assist in the purchase of four track-chairs and an enclosed trailer. These all-terrain track-chairs will allow MDS to expand their services and create more opportunities for those they serve.

MDS is a non-profit organization with the mission of providing mobility-impaired, youth, and terminally ill youth outdoor enthusiasts with hunting, fishing, shooting sports, and outdoor educational opportunities in a safe and inclusive manner.

“Partnerships between MDC and organizations like MDS are integral to the Department’s outreach efforts,” said Education Outreach Coordinator Rob Garver. “We’ve partnered with MDS for several years and we’re confident this grant and the new track-chairs will strengthen this relationship for years to come.”

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Nature/Photo Hike For Those With Disabilities at Busch Greenway Trail, Oct. 1, 2022

Photo: MDC

This free, guided outing on a paved trail is an ideal chance to explore nature regardless of mobility.

Enjoying nature and the great outdoors is for everybody, and mobility doesn’t have to be an obstacle.  The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) is leading a Nature Walk/Photo Hike for adults and children with disabilities Saturday, Oct. 1, from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m., on the Busch Greenway Trail in St. Charles.  The event is open to all ages and mobility levels and family and support givers are welcome too.

The hike will be led by MDC volunteers and travel along an ADA-accessible paved trail toward the Katy Trial, then turn around and walk back.  The Busch Greenway travels near and through the August A. Busch Memorial and Weldon Spring Conservation Areas.

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Native Plant Sale at Roeslein & Associates, Sept. 30, 2022

Photo: celandine poppy by Mervin Wallace.

Four Grow Native!® professional members will sell a variety of native seeds, wildflowers, grasses, shrubs, trees, vines, and sedges.

The Missouri Prairie Foundation® (MPF) and host, Roeslein & Associates, will hold a native plant sale on Friday, September 30, 2022, at 9200 Watson Road, St. Louis, MO, from 3:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Gaylena’s Garden, Missouri Wildflowers Nursery, Papillon Perennials, and River City Natives will supply a variety of native plants for your landscaping needs. These Grow Native! professional members will donate five percent of plant sale proceeds to support MPF’s conservation work, and Roeslein & Associates will match this amount.

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Protecting our Pollinators Event at Powder Valley Nature Center, event Sept. 17

Photo: MDC

Nature’s pollinating insects have our backs every day.  Scientists estimate at one out of every three bites of food we eat is there thanks to pollinating insects and other animals.  Did you know approximately 35% of the world’s food crops depend on animal pollinators to reproduce?  That also includes the peppers and tomatoes we grow in our own gardens, or the blackberries we might enjoy collecting in nature.  Without our pollinators, we would be starving.

Since pollinators do so much for us, the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) invites you to help them out too.  MDC’s Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center is hosting the Protecting our Pollinators event, on Saturday, Sept. 17 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. It’s a special event to celebrate these silent, but essential heroes of the insect and animal world.  Some of Missouri’s most important pollinators include bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, and moths.  The event is free and welcomes people of all ages and will include educational booths, presentations, and activities to help the whole family appreciate pollinators.

The presentations during the event will take place in the nature center’s auditorium and will include the following topics:

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St. Louis Suburbs Hit: Hard One-in-1,000 Year Rains Make A “Summer of Flash Floods”

Kirkwood residents watched in amazement on July 26 when storms turned Sugar Creek into a raging river.

by Don Corrigan

St. Louis and its suburbs have been bombarded by extreme precipitation events. That includes record-shattering rains that delivered a “Summer of Flash Floods” for 2022.

Thunderstorms in July delivered devastating flooding, including one on July 26 and another on July 28. The storms hit especially hard in Kirkwood, Webster Groves, Rock Hill, Brentwood and University City.

Area waterways such as the River Des Peres, Shady Creek, Deer Creek and Gravois Creek “flashed” out of their banks. The water receded in a matter of hours, but left mud, trees, home debris and thousands of dollars in damage.

The one-in-1,000 year rain events prompted national news coverage. Sean Hadley, spokesman for the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District (MSD), summed it up for the Washington Post: “It was just too much water.”

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Celebrate Monarch Butterflies with the MDC in September

Photo: MDC

Monarch butterflies migrate southward from northern states in early autumn, swelling their numbers for a time in the Kansas City region. To celebrate these beautiful orange and black butterflies and to promote their conservation, the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) will host several programs for monarchs and other butterflies during September.

The monarch butterfly events will be hosted by MDC’s Burr Oak Woods Nature Center in Blue Springs and the Anita B. Gorman Discovery Center in Kansas City. A butterfly event will also be offered at Platte County’s Platte Ridge Park.

COVID-19 safety precautions will be observed. Some programs are walk-in for the whole family, others may require registration and have an age requirement. All events connect people with one of nature’s most visibly wondrous creatures.

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Dine & Discuss Webster at Cyrano’s on Sept. 16

Cyrano’s Café in Webster Groves will host a special Dine & Discuss panel on environment and the outdoors at noon on Friday, Sept. 16. The panel will be moderated by Don Corrigan, author of Amazing Webster Groves. The book covers topics to be discussed by panelists, who will include:

• Charles Hoessle, emeritus St. Louis Zoo Director, who will talk about zoologists from Webster Groves, larger-than-life personalities who changed the face of Zoos in America and across the world.

• Richard Thoma, past president of the Webster Groves Nature Study Society, who will talk about scientists and expert members of the 100-year-old society, such as Marshall Magner, renowned entomologist.

• Jean Ponzi of MoBot and Earthworms, who will talk about J.B. Lester, publisher of The Healthy Planet, and his magazine’s service in highlighting outdoor activists over the years.

The event will be in the Cyrano’s Private Room at 603 E. Lockwood Avenue. Space is limited for the Friday, Sept. 16 event. The restaurant is selling tickets at $40 each which will include a copy of the book, lunch and beverage.

Luncheon guests should call the restaurant at 314-963-3232 to purchase tickets. Ticket reservations are highly recommended, but tickets may be purchased at the door at 11:30 a.m., space permitting.

Author of Amazing Webster Groves, Don Corrigan, is professor emeritus of Webster University and editor emeritus of Webster-Kirkwood Times.

Local Event: ArborMeisters Homebrew + Craft Beer Festival, September 24, 2022

Forest ReLeaf of Missouri is excited to present the ArborMeisters Homebrew + Craft Beer Festival!

Each homebrew includes at least one ingredient sourced from a tree! Enjoy these unique brews while taking in the natural beauty of Forest ReLeaf’s Communitree Gardens nursery in Creve Coeur Park. All proceeds benefit Forest ReLeaf’s mission of “Planting Trees, Enriching Communities.” Attendees will have the opportunity to rate the various brews and vote for their favorites; may the best homebrewer win!

You will enjoy creative home brews, craft beer, live music, CommuniTree Gardens nursery tours, raffle prizes, food, and more.

For more information CLICK HERE.