Forest Preserves of the Kankakee River Valley
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"All ethics so far evolved rest upon a single premise: that the individual is a member of a community of interdependent parts.  The land ethic simply enlarges the boundaries of the community to include soils, waters, plants and animals, or collectively, the land ... a land ethic changes the role of Homo Sapiens from conqueror of the land-community to plain member and citizen of it ... it implies respect for his fellow members, and so also respect for the community as such"

---- Aldo Leopold, "Sand County Almanac"



Fall 2015 Newsletter

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Current Events and Announcements


Green Drinks Kankakee

The Illinois Native Plant Society,

Kankakee Torrent Chapter 

Presented by

Janine Catchpole,

President of the Kankakee Torrent Chapter of the Illinois Native Plant Society (INPS),

Past State Prsident and INPS Board Member           

 Tuesday, November 17, 2015

The program is free and open to the public

6-6:30 p.m. networking • 6:30-8 p.m. program

Brickstone Brewery 557 William Latham Drive, Bourbonnais

Menu items and drinks will be available for purchase.

                         Come and learn the history of the Illinois Native Plant Society (INPS), what the new Kankakee Chapter plans to do,

                            and an update on the Bio Blitz held this spring at Camp Shaw.  For more information, see



The event is sponsored by the Council for Community Sustainability, a public outreach group created as part of the sustainability initiative at Kankakee Community College. For more information, contact Bert Jacobson at 815-802-8242


DVDs of the documentary film "Everglades of the North"

The DVDs of the documentary "Everglades of the North are for sale through Lakeshore Public Television and you can place an order now by calling (219) 756-5656.  The cost of the DVD is $24.95, which includes shipping and handling.  

Once known as the Northern Everglades, the Grand Kankakee Marsh was one of the largest wetlands in North America.  This riparian Garden of Eden covered much of present-day Northern Indiana and Illinois, and was home to some of the highest concentrations of wildlife on the planet.

"Never in all my world travels, have I found a more perfect spot, not a more tantalizing river."

-- General Lew Wallace. Author of "Ben Hur"

Native Americans considered the Grand Marsh's waters to be nature's womb.  Louis XIV would claim the land as "New France."  Sportsman and market hunters called it "paradise". Industrialists made their fortunes from its seemingly endless natural resources.  For centuries the marsh gave and man took.

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Links for more information on the Grand Kankakee Marsh:

U.S. Fish and Wildlife goals for reviving the grandeur of the Grand Kankakee Marsh:

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Friends of the Kankakee:

"Our mission is to establish the Grand Kankakee Marsh National Wildlife Refuge.

We will work with and support individuals and groups, public and private, who share this vision."

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The Documentary "Everglades of the North" on Facebook:

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The Indiana Grand Kankakee Marsh Restoration Project:

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Waterfowl U.S.A., Northwest Indiana Chapter: 



Public Radio WKCC 91.1 FM

at Kankakee Community College
programs that focus on topics related to conservation, sustainability and the environment

Outside with Chicago Sun Times outdoor columnist Dale Bowman, is a locally produced, half hour programs featuring interesting talks with local outdoors men and women about birding, fishing, hunting and hiking adventures along the rivers and in the woods and prairies of Illinois.

This program is aired each Monday at 4:30 p.m. and rebroadcast Sundays at 12:30 p.m.

Bioneers - another series of programs with a sustainability focus which can be heard Thursdays at 4:30 p.m.

The Green Minute messages feature KCC faculty, staff, and students providing tips about how to live a more sustainable lifestyle, conserve energy and resources and even save money. These are aired on weekdays.

Learn more at or call the station at 815-802-8230.

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Volunteer Opportunities

Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie


Hi everyone!  We have some really special volunteer days and tours planned at Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie.  Bring your family and friends and come join us!  Click here for a full event calendar:

To RSVP for Volunteer Days: Please contact Gemma Guenther, Assistant Volunteer Coordinator, by phone at  

815-423-2148 , email

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Volunteer with The Nature Conservancy:


Birding in Kankakee County

We have a very active Audubon Club in Kankakee County. Click the following links for resources, & to download documents :

Kankakee Valley Audubon Spring Field Trips


Species Checklist

Bi-Annual Birdcount Participant Checklist

Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Cornell Lab of Ornithology Website "All About Birds":

Bird Cams:

Cornell Lab of Ornithology Online Bird Guide, including each species songs and calls:

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Do your own birding, and turn in your data at the eBird website:

eBird offers Global tools for birders, which can be shared worldwide and provide critical data for science:

record the birds you see, keep track of your bird lists , explore dynamic maps and graphs, share your sightings and join the eBird community, and contribute to science and conservation

How to Enter the Hidden World of the Birds

Bird Language with Jon Young ....

Birds are the sentinels of the forest - they alert other animals to our presence, often long before we even know they are there.

The birds also tell us a lot about our own state of being, as we move on the landscape.

How can we see the more elusive animals of the forest?

Or get a deeper window into the lives of the birds right outside our door?

You can view the audio library of bird voices here:

Happy Bird watching!


Local Conservation Links:

Sustainability Office at Kankakee Community College:

Midwest Permaculture:

Center for Sustainable Community:

The Resiliancy Institute:


Scholarship Announcement


The Kankakee River Valley Forest Preserve District is seeking applicants for its Richard L. Witt scholarship.  This $750.00 college scholarship is open to students who are residents of Kankakee County and who are pursuing a program in forestry, conservation, environmental science or a related area.

Requirements for eligibility:

1) Completed at least 48 college transfer courses with at least 16 hours in the sciences.

2) Grade point average of at least 2.2 on a 4.0 scale.

3) A copy of his/her letter of acceptance from the accredited 4 year college or university where the scholarship will be applied.

4) Two letters of reference from college instructors to include at least once science instructor.

5) A written statement describing his/her interest in forestry, conservation, environmental science or a related area.

   Application forms and instructions are available at the Forest Preserve District Office at 3301 Waldron Road, Aroma Park, Illinois, or by calling 815-935-5630

Kankakee River  Valley Forest Preserve District

3301 Waldron Road P.O. Box 13 Aroma Park, Illinois 60910

phone: 815-935-5630

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last updated on November 2, 2015