Earth Day 2019: Restoring Wild At Grace Farms

April 23, 2019 - By 

The serene landscapes of rolling vistas, surprising natural wonders at every turn, and scenic backdrops of nature’s gifts all provide a masterful natural experience at Grace Farms. Set throughout over eighty acres of preserved natural lands, the thoroughly modern cultural oasis aims to inspire thoughtful introspection, insightful conversation, garner unexpected outcomes, and bring individuals together from various backgrounds. Through thoughtful programming, the expert staff creates opportunities for education, inspiration, activity, and community engagement. Within Grace Farms’ Nature initiative, Earth Day programming remains an annual highlight, and this year’s swiftly approaching Earth Day celebration aims to encapsulate the importance of restoring wilderness, developing sustainable environments for wildlife to thrive, and maintaining ecosystems and infrastructures necessary for native species to return to their previously abandoned homes.

Earth Day 2019 at Grace Farms will see a collaborative effort with The Nature Conservancy, wherein all individuals will be invited to participate in expert-led discussions and informational sessions, family friendly activities, and other special programming designed to celebrate Earth Day. On Saturday, April 27th, Grace Farms will welcome all visitors to participate within these special adventures, from 10:00AM until 6:00PM. An annual tradition at Grace Farms, Earth Day celebrations are revered by all visitors, and staff alike. During last year’s Earth Day programming, Grace Farms Foundation’s Nature Initiative Director Mark Fowler stated that “the future of conservation is all about private land and open space being preserved for wildlife habitats. Open space and access to nature are leveling factors that bring a quality of life for all people. Nature connects us to something real that grounds us and lifts our spirits.” With such importance placed on humanity’s interaction with nature, as well as the importance of restoring nature, Earth Day at Grace Farms is a tradition to look forward to, amidst the already-existing exuberant nature-based programming.

The celebrations will kick off at Interactive Meadows Plaza, featuring family friendly activities, various native plants, and an important demonstration from Pollinator Pathway, which will focus on the importance of sustainable ecosystems for pollinators. Within the structure of Grace Farms’ Nature incentive, extensive programming related to the power of pollination in terms of reviving natural splendors is already in motion, with events focusing on the revival of indigenous plants and wildlife.

Morning activities will continue with Habitats and Home, a facilitated workshop set in Grace Farms’ art studio and outdoors. The workshop is intended for families with children from three to ten years old, and will encourage children to learn about animal communities, and the manner in which animals build homes, through various interactive activities. Throughout the year, Grace Farms offers open time for families within the arts studio, as well as structured programming that inspires insightful conversation, and new revelations through aesthetic creation.

A recognized birding enclave, Grace Farms is home to over 75 species of birds. As part of this year’s Earth Day programming, Grace Farms will be offering guided Native Bird Walks, led by Master Birder Frank Mantlik. Set within Grace Farms’ walking trails, the Native Bird Walks are an exciting way to enjoy an outdoor activity and take in the sights and sounds of native birds in the preserved wetlands, ponds, and grasslands that make up Grace Farms. Following the conclusion of the walks, Grace Farms will once again welcome Master Falconer Brian Bradley, who will engross his audience with a live falconry demonstration, scheduled for 12:00PM, and 2:00PM. Previously enjoyed throughout prior Earth Day celebrations at Grace Farms, the Falconry demonstration will provide insights into the behavior, mannerisms, life, and grace of the falcon.

Other diverse programming will include various conversations with industry experts, ranging in topics, and designed to inspire conversation, consideration, and appreciation for the entwined relationships between nature, mankind, and the world around us. The first conversational programming will be titled “The Benefits of Rewilding”, led by the Director of Land Management at The Nature Conservancy, Dave Gumbart. This informational session will focus on the vital symbiotic relationship between native plants, and the birds and insects that rely on them for food and shelter. This topic is especially important for Grace Farms, as their Nature initiative strives to develop hospitable conditions that have already fostered the successful return of many native species of animals and hopes to provide sustainable conditions within the future. The second informational session will be titled “Restoring Native Meadows” and will feature a conversation with the Founder of Pennington Grey, Penn Marchael. This session will revolve around planting and the long-term importance of maintaining meadows.

Welcoming to all visitors, of all ages, from all backgrounds, Earth Day celebrations at Grace Farms inspire the face-to-face communication that is often lost within the hustle and bustle of the modern world. By taking time to celebrate the natural wonders amongst Grace Farms’ 80-plus acres and yearning to experience the personal growth associated with learning about nature, patrons will undoubtedly participate in a memorable day. As the largest expanse of natural land in Fairfield County, Grace Farms serves as the perfect backdrop for Earth Day, and the daily celebration of nature.

Grace Farms Foundation’s President and Founder, Sharon Prince recently spent time sharing her thoughts about thoughtful space via the Grace Farms Blog. Prince related ways in which hopeful spaces can incite real change in the world, propelling education, insight, and conversation through thoughtful design, relationship with nature, and a symbiotic flow. In this case, she continued, Grace Farms’ “open architecture, embedded into an 80-acre expanse, and the pathways that extend out to a faraway Cattail Pond, cue discovery. Meanwhile, nature—the 10 different restored native habitats, meadows, roaming pollinators, 80+ sighted birds—can inspire a sense of awe. This intentional relationship between indoors and outdoors, complemented by our intention to cultivate a peaceful, welcoming environment for all, can stimulate new perspectives.” Grace Farms continues to serve as a shining beacon of a hopeful space and urges all patrons to participate in its wonders. Earth Day programming is the springboard for a season of exploration, education, and growth.

For more information visit the Grace Farms website.

Posted In:  Earth Day

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