Pre-registration is required for all programs (including free programs). For safety during this time, please have your face covering and consider bringing hand sanitizer when you attend the program.
Introduction to Native Plants & Natural Landscaping
Sat, Aug 28, 9–10 am
TNS Member: $4 | Non-Member: $5
Angela Nelson, Horticulturist at East Michigan Native Plants, LLC, will hold a workshop before the Native Plant Sale to assist you in making your native plant selections! The workshop will provide an introduction to native plants and natural landscaping concepts, discuss environmental and planning considerations, and delve into maintenance techniques, as well as take a look at some of Michigan’s most valuable wildflower and grass species.
August Native Plant Sale
Sat, Aug 28, 10 am–2 pm
Fall is a great time to plant! Butterflies, bees and birds will flock to your landscape with the addition of some of Michigan’s most-loved native plant species! Angela Nelson from East Michigan Native Plants, LLC, (formerly Designs By Nature East, LLC) will be bringing over 80 species of Michigan native perennial wildflowers and grasses for you to select from. Bring your pictures and plans for personal help and advice with your selections! Native Plant species information can be found at: eastmichnatives.com.
Photo Walks by TNS Photo Club
Saturdays, Sept 4, Oct 2 & Nov 6, 8-10 am
TNS Member: Free | Non-Member: $2
Guided hikes through the SNC. Meet in the parking lot by 8 am. Bring your camera. Dress for the weather.
Paint with a Naturalist
TNS Member: $6 | Non-Member: $8
Enjoy the relaxing and beautiful scenery of Stage as you paint your masterpiece! Using live mounts as still life, paint in your favorite medium while enjoying the company of other local artists. The naturalist will supply some fun facts about the animals being highlighted each session. Bring your own painting supplies. Flat tables and benches will be provided but please feel free to bring an easel. This is a non-instructional art class. There is a sink in the room, but please no chemical cleaners allowed in the building.
Water Birds: Wed, Sept 8, 10 am-12 pm Click here to register
Coyote & Fox: Tues, Sept 21, 10 am-12 pm Click here to register
Hawks & Owls: Wed, Oct 6, 12:30-2:30 pm Click here to register
Small Mammals: Tues, Oct 19, 10 am-12 pm Click here to register
Water Mammals: Wed, Nov 3, 12:30-2:30 pm Click here to register
Upland Ground Birds: Tues, Nov 16, 10 am-12 pm Click here to register
Join us on one of these tours to visit the 5 rehabilitated owls that call the Stage Nature Center home. This tour gives you a chance to learn more about the different owl species, reasons why they each live in captivity, explore their different personalities, and get your owl questions answered. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Fees apply to all participants.
Sat, Sept 11, 10-11 am or 11:30 am-12:30 pm
TNS Member: $5 | Non-Member: $7
The monarch butterflies of North America travel up to 3,000 miles during their unique two-way migration every year. September is when many of Michigan’s monarchs are beginning their journey to Mexico. Participants will assist staff in the tagging and release of live monarchs to further research about this fascinating butterfly. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Fees apply to all participants.
Homeschool & School Enrichment Nature Classes
TNS Member: $6.50/child | Non-Member: $8.50/child
For homeschool children and a free parent partner. Or, as science enrichment for children attending school (virtually or in-person) and a free parent partner.
Owls & Pellets – Meet some of the live owls that live at the nature center while learning about their adaptations for predation and the species found in Michigan. Each child will dissect an owl pellet to determine which animals it ate.
Harvest Time – Come and enjoy harvest time as we make real apple cider using our cider press! We will learn about the fall harvest at farms and in nature. We will take a close look at apples, use the press, go on a beautiful fall hike, and sample some pasteurized cider.
Animal Locomotion – Walk, run, gallop, fly, slither, swim, or glide? Animals have many ways of traveling. Join us and learn about adaptations that help animals move from place to place.
TNS Member: $11 | Non-Member: $14
Children, with a free adult partner, can attend one or more of the following programs. Each session includes a nature story, hike, activities, craft and a snack.
Discover the exciting lives of reptiles in September.
Explore the colors and happenings of the autumn harvest season in October.
Learn all about white-tailed deer in November.
Ages: All (best for 5 & up)
TNS Member: $4 | Non-Member: $6
Enjoy some screen-free time while exploring the natural world! Together we will participate in hands-on, outdoor experiences to investigate different nature-related topics. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Fees apply to all participants.
Invasive Species on Sat, Sept 18: CANCELLED
Wed, Sept 22 & Sat, Nov 13, 11 am-12 pm
TNS Member: $3 | Non-Member: $5
Let your child explore the sights and sounds of nature through outdoor activities. This program will take place outside, except in the event of inclement weather. Bring children in strollers that are sturdy enough for a wood chipped trail. The adult partner is free and must accompany the child throughout the program.
Fall Clean Up Day
Sat, Sept 25, 9 am-12 pm
We are seeking volunteers to help us preserve our native flora by eradicating invasive non-native plants. We will also work to improve the nature trails and clean up the grounds. Work gloves, old clothes, and “old fashioned elbow grease” are recommended. Bring a kneeling pad, if desired.
Walk with a Naturalist
Sat, Sept 25, 2-3 pm & Sat, Nov 20, 10:30-11:30 am
Take a relaxing walk on the SNC trails through various natural communities. Get answers to your nature questions. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Fees apply to all participants.
Tues, Sept 28, 5-7 pm
TNS Member: $15 | Non-Member: $19 |<10 yrs: Free
Herbalist Lea Pfeifer will take you on a walk to explore edible and medicinal plants found on the SNC grounds. She will give tips on how to identify the plants and ways they can be useful to people.
Scout It Out: Boy Scouts
Scouts: come and complete your nature-related achievement! All or most requirements are met; however, the badge itself is not included. Register as an individual scout, den, pack or troop. Please dress for the weather. Leaders or chaperones are free and need to remain with their scouts. No refunds for these programs.
Scout It Out: Girl Scouts
Scouts: come and complete your nature-related badge! All or most requirements are met; however, the badge itself is not included. Register as an individual scout, den, pack or troop. Please dress for the weather. Leaders or chaperones are free and need to remain with their scouts. No refunds for these programs.
Fall Bird Hike
Sat, Oct 9, 8-10 am
TNS Member: $4 | Non-Member: $6
Fall offers a great opportunity to observe a variety of birds while enjoying the fall colors. Some of the birds will be winter residents; others will be just passing through on their trip south. Join us as we hike the trails and look for our migrating feathered friends. Bring binoculars or borrow ours. All experience levels welcome. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Each participant must enroll and pay the fee.
Sat, Oct 16, 2-3:30 pm
TNS Member: $5 | Non-Member: $7
Why do leaves change color in the fall? Come and explore the reason for the beautiful fall colors. We will hike the trails, enjoy the changing leaves, and make a simple craft.
Trick or Treat Among the Trees
A Parent and Child Autumn Adventure
Sun, Oct 17. Please attend at your assigned start time.
Start times: 1 pm, 1:30 pm, 2:00 pm, 2:30 pm and 3:00 pm
TNS Member: $11/child | Non-Member: $14/child
Halloween doesn’t have to be ghastly and frightening; it can be a fun and friendly outdoor celebration! Put on your costume and come out to hike the self-guided woodland pumpkin trail. Children will learn some secrets of the forest, receive treats, meet costumed characters and much more. Dress for the weather! For children with an adult. The free adult partner must accompany children throughout the program. To maintain social distancing, families will hike the trail on their own and not with a guided group.
Coyotes in Your Neighborhood
Tues, Oct 19, 7-8 pm
In this program, you’ll learn about the basic biology and behavior of coyotes in Michigan, how the DNR manages coyote populations in the state and how to coexist with the coyotes in your neighborhood or community. Presented by Holly Vaughn of the DNR Wildlife Division.
Sat, Oct 23, 1:30-3 pm
TNS Member: $10 | Non-Member: $13
We will observe and explore pumpkins with some interactive science experiments. Do they float? How far does one roll? We will determine which parts of a pumpkin have the most density, compare pumpkin weights, make some pumpkin catapults and much more. Come dressed to get messy!
Owl-O-Ween 2021 – Meet live owls!
Sat, Oct 30, 4–5:30 pm
TNS Member: $13 | Non-Member: $15
Join us this Halloween season to discover the mysterious, but not so scary, lives of owls while meeting some of the resident owls of the Stage Nature Center! We will explore owl myths, learn about their species characteristics, and how they survive the nighttime world. Finish your visit by making a fun owl craft to take home. All proceeds go directly towards the “Owl Fund” to provide food and care for our owls. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Each person participating must enroll and pay the fee.
Owl Prowl – Meet a Live Owl
Sat, Nov 20, 4:30-6:30 pm
TNS Member: $10 | Non-Member: $12
Have you heard the trill and whinny of the Eastern Screech-Owl or the deep, soft hoot of the Great Horned Owl? On each Prowl, we will immerse ourselves into the nighttime world of the owl and discover what makes them so unique. We will first meet one of our resident owls up close and personal. Then we will prowl the trails to listen and look for these elusive raptors that call the grounds of the Stage Nature Center home. Be sure to dress for the weather. This is a family program; children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Each person participating must enroll and pay the fee.
WATCH THIS SPACE – MORE NATURE EDUCATION PROGRAMS COMING SOON!