Feb. 10 Environmental Education Expo to feature growing number of local organizations offering hands-on learning and a preview of programs
A growing number of local partnering organizations, agencies and groups are planning to participate in an Environmental Education Expo on Saturday, Feb. 10, 2024, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Montour Preserve's Educational Center located at 700 Preserve Road, Danville, PA 17821.
"On Super Bowl weekend, this will be the Super Bowl of local events to take your whole family to. We have more than 20 groups planned with so many cool hands-on activities and things to explore, from fossils to STEM-related MWEE (Meaningful Watershed Educational Experience) kits and drones, reptiles and a community weaving experience, among other things," said Middle Susquehanna Riverkeeper John Zaktansky. "This is the first major event for the Vernal School partnership at the Montour Preserve and a chance to show people what we've been up to so far and preview of programs to come in 2024 and beyond."
Among those joining the Middle Susquehanna Riverkeeper Association and Montour Area Recreation Commission with a hands-on booth experience for families and others of all ages will be the Central Susquehanna Intermediate Unit (CSIU), featuring the MWEE kits.
"MWEE is a comprehensive set of educational materials designed to engage students in hands-on, experiential learning about watersheds and environmental stewardship. These kits typically include a variety of resources to facilitate a meaningful exploration of local water systems," said Colleen Epler-Ruths. "They are designed to empower educators to facilitate meaningful and memorable learning experiences that foster a sense of environmental responsibility. By combining classroom instruction with hands-on field activities, these kits aim to deepen students' understanding of watershed systems and inspire a commitment to environmental conservation."
The CSIU will also be offering Act 48 credit hours for teachers who attend the expo.
The current list of groups that will be represented at the expo and some of the activities being planned include the following. Check back for updates on this list:
"Booths will be spread out throughout the large auditorium, classroom and displays of the nature center and will be set up in a way where people of all ages can explore it at their own pace, learning as they go," said Zaktansky. "There will be plenty of free handouts, door prizes and other cool opportunities. This is definitely one event you won't want to miss."
The event is free to attend and all are welcome. Please note that all regular Montour Preserve rules apply, including no pets/dogs except those that are registered service animals. For a listing of general Montour Preserve rules, click here.
Donations toward the event, toward the growing list of future environmental education programs or toward numerous upgrades planned at the Montour Preserve to help facilitate programming and helping people of all walks of life better connect with our natural resources, can be made via the following DonorBox platform, via check made out to Vernal School, 112 Market Street, Sunbury PA 17801 or in person during the event on Feb. 10.
While pre-registration is NOT needed to attend the Environmental Education Expo on Feb. 10 at the Montour Preserve, those that do pre-register and show up at the event will be entered into a drawing for a few special door prizes.