Will County Forest District’s bird photo contest takes flight

Drop in to the Forest Preserve District’s Four Rivers Environmental Education Center in Channahon during the month of May to take part in self-guided Migration Celebration activities. To add to the fun, snap some photos for the new Where Feathers Meet the Flash bird photography contest.

Here are the Forest Preserve District of Will County programs for the week of April 29. Online registration is available on the Event Calendar at ReconnectWithNature.org.

Migration Celebration at Four Rivers: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays; noon-4 p.m. Sundays, May 1-31, Four Rivers Environmental Education Center, Channahon. Enjoy this monthlong celebration of migratory birds. Festivities will include ongoing crafts, family-friendly activities and hands-on exploration of feathers, beaks and more. Each week, a new station will be ready for visitors to discover what makes migratory birds so exceptional. Migration Celebration is supported by funding from Alliance Pipeline, a joint venture of Enbridge and Pembina, and through the assistance of The Nature Foundation of Will County. All programs will be self-guided. Free, all ages.

Where Feathers Meet the Flash Photo Contest: 8 a.m.-sunset, May 1-31, McKinley Woods, Channahon. Take part in the inaugural Four Rivers bird photography competition. Submit your picture of a migratory birds at McKinley Woods for a chance to win a gift certificate to the Cornell Lab Bird Academy and new bird-feeding supplies from Wild Birds Unlimited of Joliet. There will be adult (18 and older) and youth (17 and younger) categories. Visit Four Rivers Environmental Education Center to check out recent sightings and learn where you’ll have the best chance to find the bird you’re looking for. Register your bird photo by scanning the QR code at the photo submission stations along the trails and in the visitor center. Contest rules are on the submission form. Free, all ages.

Nature’s Palette Color Discovery: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays; noon-4 p.m. Sundays, May 1-31, Plum Creek Nature Center, Crete Township. For this self-guided activity, get close to nature to notice all the color differences that add beautiful details to our world. Drop in during open hours to pick up a palette of nature shades to see how many you can match to objects outside. Free, all ages.

“Fluddles” Film Screening: 6-9 p.m. Friday, May 3, Four Rivers Environmental Education Center. This documentary highlights the importance of large temporary puddles providing habitat for many birds. Film creator Bob Dolgan will introduce the film and host a question-and-answer session afterward. Learn more about Dolgan, founder of Turnstone Strategies, at Turnstoneimpact.com Visit Four Rivers for the screening, light refreshments and a chance to engage with local bird organizations. Free, all ages. Register by May 3.

Lake Renwick Migratory Bird Viewing: 8 a.m.-noon, Saturdays in May and June starting May 4, at Lake Renwick Heron Rookery Nature Preserve, Plainfield. See the dazzling display of nesting herons, egrets and cormorants and maybe even a bald eagle. The preserve has controlled access during nesting season to minimize disturbances to nests. The only way to view the birds at this time of year is to attend a viewing program. Volunteers and staff will be at the viewing platform and visitor center to answer questions. Free, all ages.

Birds and Blooms: 9-10:30 a.m. Saturday, May 4, McKinley Woods – Frederick’s Grove. Walk with a naturalist to spot brightly colored warblers in the trees above and vibrant wildflower on the forest floor. Free, ages 10 or older. Register by May 3.

Sensory Sunday: 11 a.m.-noon, Sunday, May 5, Four Rivers Environmental Education Center. Guests with sensory-processing needs, social anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder and those that would benefit from a small-group experience are invited to experience the exhibits and trails on their own terms. Free, all ages. Register by May 4.

Meet a Beekeeper: 12:30-2:30 p.m. Sunday, May 5, Plum Creek Nature Center. Meet Mike Rusnak, a local beekeeper with 15 years of experience, to discuss the art of beekeeping. Pick up specific beekeeping tips or simply learn more about the world of bees. Free, all ages.