Dahlem holds special events throughout the year. These events revolve around what is happening in the natural world, and celebrate our connection with plants and animals. They are designed with something to suit all tastes and are a fun and interesting way to learn about nature and the great outdoors. For more information on any of our events, call (517) 782-3453 or contact us. Also, be sure to check out our Partner Organizations page.
Program Codes – (A) Adult | (F) Family | (C) Child
The Dahlem Ecology Farm through Time – (A)
Saturday, March 8
The Dahlem Ecology Farm, formerly known as the Wickwire Farm, has a fascinating history. Join Mark Snedeker for a look through time at the history of the property. Old maps, aerial photographs and newspaper articles will be on hand for you to view., as we get ready to pull materials together to create a book about the Farm. Fee: $3/members $5/non-member.
Maple Madness – (F)
Saturday, March 22
12:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Dahlem’s small sugaring “operation” is just big enough to teach people about the nature of maple syrup. Visitors stop at different stations to learn about the history of sugaring, how to identify the right trees to tap, how tapping is done, and finally, see the sap being boiled down at the sugar shack, where everyone gets to taste the sweet nectar of the sugar maple. Tours leave every 20 minutes, the last one going out at 2:00. Fee: $3/member; $5/non-member. Call to reserve your spot: 517-782-3453.
Wild Bird Banding – (A) (F)
Saturday, March 29
8:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Have you ever held a live songbird in your hand…or seen one only inches from your face? If birds fascinate you, then you will not want to miss this opportunity to watch (and perhaps help) songbird bander Allen Chartier as he captures birds at our bird feeding stations and bands them for research. The program starts with a PowerPoint presentation inside at 8:00 and the banding will take place between 9:00 and 11:00. Program participants will be indoors most of the time, but may have the opportunity to help release birds. Program will be cancelled if it is raining. Fee: $5/member, $10/non-member.
Rain Gardens for a More Sustainable Landscape – (A)
Sunday, March 30
Rain gardens capture stormwater runoff before it can pollute our local streams, while adding an attractive, low-maintenance garden to your property. Learn how to site your rain garden strategically to intercept water runoff (especially from roofs, driveways and sidewalks). Find out which plants thrive in these conditions – especially native plants that can absorb extra water when available yet tolerate drier conditions at other times. Your rain garden can be attractive throughout the year while helping to provide food and shelter for birds, butterflies, bees, and other beneficial insects. Guest speaker Ellyn Meyers brings years of horticultural training and experience to this very timely topic. Fee: $5/member; $10/non-member. Pre-registration required by 3/28.
Winter Stonefly Hunt – (A) (F)
Feathered Friends – (C) Ages 3-5
Tuesday, April 1
10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
There are many beautiful birds that call Michigan home. Drop off your child so that they can learn about these feathered friends. We will go on a hike with binoculars to look for birds that live in Michigan, and make a bird feeder and a bird craft. We will visit the Nature Playscape as well. Because we will be outside for part of the program, please dress your child accordingly. Fee: $3/member; $5/non-member. Pre-registration required by 3/28.
Nature Art and Play – (C) Ages 3-5
Thursday, April 3
10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Nature has many wonderful gifts to use for play and art. Drop off your child so that they can experience playing in nature and making art using nature. Your child will go on a hike, build a small structure in the woods out of natural materials, and make a nature craft to take home. We will wrap up our morning playing at the Nature Playscape. Because we will be outside for part of the program, please dress your child accordingly. Fee: $3/member; $5/non-member. Pre-registration required by 3/28.
Gardening to Attract Butterflies – (A)
Sunday, April 13
Where have all the butterflies gone? A carefully planned garden can attract all sorts of beautiful butterflies and provide habitat for increasing their numbers. Learn how to select the best nectar producing flowers and also the plants that serve as food sources for caterpillars to develop into adult butterflies. Appropriate gardening techniques, butterfly behavior and development will also be discussed so that you will know how to help increase our faltering butterfly populations. Guest speaker Ellyn Meyers brings years of horticultural training and experience to this very timely topic. Fee: $5/member; $10/non-member. Pre-registration required by 4/11.
Night of the Amphibians – (F)
Thursday, April 24 & Friday, April 25
7:00 – 9:00 PM
As the warm sun of spring makes the plants start to grow, it also brings thoughts of romance to the frogs, who make their way to the nearest pond in search of a mate. The evening air soon becomes deafening as their songs of love throb in the dusk. Join us for a slog through the water and weeds as we search for these springtime singers. A fun event for the whole family! Wear your best wading boots and be prepared to get wet. Fee: $3/member; $5/non-member. Call to reserve your spot: 517-782-3453.
Earth Day – (F)
Saturday, April 26
1:00 – 4:00 PM
Although we like to think of every day as Earth Day, one day is set aside every year to specifically honor Mother Earth and help people learn a few ways to live a little more gently upon her. The Jackson Area Outdoor Coalition, a group of various outdoor organizations in Jackson, hosts an Earth Day Celebration every spring at Cascades Park. Vendors from many outdoor groups, like the Grand River Environmental Action Team, The Dahlem Conservancy, Jackson County Conservation District, Jackson Audubon, will be on hand with fun activities and learning opportunities. There will be food, music, paddling, fishing, and more! Come join us for an afternoon of fun while we pay tribute to this planet we call home. For more information: 517-782-3453.