There’s so much to do in our region! Here’s a look at upcoming lectures and educational enrichment.
Klarifly Foundation Snowshoe Ball 5K
Dec. 20, 2014, 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Snowshoe, run or walk this 5K course, followed by mimosas, hot drinks, treats and a DJ. Spectators may watch from the clubhouse. Wear your snowshoes, boots, shoes, or give our partners at Fever River Outfitters a call to reserve your pair for the event. They’ll be waiting for you when you arrive. Lacoma Golf Club, 8080 Timmerman Dr., East Dubuque, Ill., (563) 542-3801, klarifly.org.
Celebration Christmas Service
Dec. 21, 10:30 a.m. Join us for a special Christmas service, only one service this Sunday. We will have a special kids program during service. Bethesda Covenant Church, 2101 E. State St., Rockford, (815) 397-4212, bethesdacovenant.com.
New Year’s Around the World: Sydney
Dec. 27, 6-10 p.m. A hands-on cooking class, four-course meal and wine tasting – a culinary trip to Sydney by developing traditional Australian celebratory dishes and wine pairings. Led by Chef John Bogan. The Lake Geneva School of Cooking, 727 Geneva St., Lake Geneva, Wis., (262) 248-3933, lakegenevaschoolofcooking.com.
New Year’s Around the World: Rome
Dec. 28, 6-10 p.m. A hands-on cooking class, four-course meal and wine tasting – a culinary trip to Rome by developing traditional Italian celebratory dishes and wine pairings. Led by Chef John Bogan. Lake Geneva School of Cooking, Lake Geneva, (262) 248-3933.
A Night at Burpee Museum
Dec. 27, 7 p.m.-midnight. Explore the museum at night and participate in lots of special activities, including storytelling, learning about the night sky with Gary Soper of the Dark Sky Society and his telescope, watching a movie, getting up close to some live creepy crawlies and much more. $10. Burpee Museum of Natural History, 737 N. Main St., Rockford, (815) 965-3433, burpee.org.
Downtown Churches Christmas Open House
Jan. 3, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Enjoy the peace and beauty of the sanctuaries at these participating Freeport churches: St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, 229 Washington Place; First Lutheran Church, 303 S. Galena Ave.; Christian Science, 429 W. Stephenson St.; United Presbyterian Church, 302 W. Stephenson St., Holy Cross Greek Orthodox, 607 S. Galena Ave.; Embury United Methodist Church, 515 S. Galena Ave.; St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 813 S. State; Grace Episcopal Church, 10 S. Cherry; Faith Center, 203 W. Pleasant. Downtown Freeport. (815) 232-3109.
Jan. 7, 10 a.m.-noon. Learn a bit about what’s going on under the snow and then head out for a hike through the prairie, to look for tracks, tunnels, scat, and other signs of winter critters. Hot chocolate afterwards. Free. Jarrett Center, Byron Forest Preserve, 7993 N. River Road, Byron, Ill., (815) 234-8535, byronforestpreserve.com.
The Greater Prairie Chicken in Illinois
Jan. 8, 2 p.m. Bob Gillespie, Natural Resources Coordinator with the Illinois Natural History Survey, talks about the history and beauty of this once-abundant wildlife species, current recovery efforts and the peril it faces. Free. Winter Lecture Series. Byron Forest Preserve, byronforestpreserve.com.
Winter Bird Walk
Jan. 10, 8:30-10:30 a.m. Local bird expert Dan Williams leads a family-friendly walk to identify the many birds making the arboretum their home. Dan will help everyone recognize the birds singing and, on the way, don’t forget to look for tracks in the snow. Dress for the weather. Included with admission. Members free. Klehm Arboretum & Botanic Garden, 2715 S. Main St., Rockford, (815) 965-8146, klehm.org.
See a Juggler! Be a Juggler!
Jan. 10, 11-11:45 a.m. Professional juggler/entertainer Jason Kollum presents an interactive program where everybody participates and learns cool balancing and juggling skills. Nordlof Center, 118 N. Main St., Rockford, (815) 965-7606, option 2, rockfordpubliclibrary.org.
Jan. 11, Feb. 8, 2-4 p.m. Learn beekeeping techniques, tools of the trade and everything else there is to know about these awesome little insects, and the important role they play in our lives. $2 per person. Byron Forest Preserve, byronforestpreserve.com.
Galena Winter Farmers Market
Jan. 14, Feb. 11, March 11, April 8, 4-6 p.m. Find winter produce such as greens, root vegetables, cabbages, winter squashes, pears and more, locally made craft items, baked goods, plants, jams and jellies, and handmade winter wear. Galena Center for the Arts, 219 Summit St., Galena, (815) 776-9200, galenawintermarket.com.
Jan. 17, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. production of MacBeth, vendors booths and exhibits from local authors, booksellers, publishers and literary organizations. Presentations by authors Mary Potter Kenyon and Heather Gudenkauf, Q&A, book signing. DeSoto House Hotel, 230 S. Main St., Galena, (815) 777-0200.
I Have A Dream Day
Jan. 19, 4-5 p.m. Learn about Martin Luther King Jr, an African American leader and hero, and make a craft. Ages 6-12. Rockford Public Library (RPL), Lewis Lemon Branch, 1988 Jefferson St., Rockford, (815) 965-7606, option 2, rockfordpubliclibrary.org.
Finding Grants for a Non-Profit Organization
Jan. 22, 2-3:30 p.m. Ages 18+. Learn to search the Foundation Directory Online to find grants for a non-profit organization. NOT businesses or individuals. Phone number or email address required. Must be Internet proficient. RPL Main Branch, 215 N. Wyman St., Rockford, (815) 965-6731, rockfordpubliclibrary.org.
Speaker Series: Holocaust Denial
Jan. 21, 7-8 p.m. Three-course light dinner & speaker presentation. The phenomenon of Holocaust denial, presented by Dr. Adam Stanley. $35 per couple plus tax and gratuity. Fried Green Tomatoes, 213 N. Main St., Galena, (815) 777-3938, visitgalena.org.
Thesis in Hip-Hop
Feb. 2, 6 p.m. Adjunct English Instructor Grant Schubert will explore how “The Rise of the Sword” in hip-hop came about, from D.J. Hollywood to the Sugar Hill Gang and to the battle between Kool Moe Dee and Busy Bee. First Tuesday Lecture Series. Student Center Atrium, Rock Valley College (RVC), 3301 N. Mulford Road, Rockford, (815) 921-4009, rockvalleycollege.edu/FirstTuesday.
Etsy How To’s
Feb. 11, 1-3 p.m. If you’re ready to turn your hobby into a real job, this will guide you through the steps to create your own shop. Must be Internet savvy with an email account. Nordlof Center, Rockford, rockfordpubliclibary.org.
Meteors and their Impact on Earth
Feb. 15, 2 p.m. The origins and characteristics of meteors and meteorites, the role meteorites played in earth’s formation and may play in its destructions, and explore the possibility that the very same object that may have brought life to our planet may also take it away. Presented by Walter Trentadue, RVC astronomy instructor and president of the Galena Astronomical Society. Free. Winter Lecture Series. Byron Forest Preserve, byronforestpreserve.com.
Domestic Servants in the 19th Century
Feb. 21, 1 p.m. Erika Holst discusses the rise of domestic servants in middle class homes, the social class impact, the individuals who held these roles, their duties and more. $5/members free. Tinker Swiss Cottage, 411 Kent St., Rockford, (815) 964-2424, tinkercottage.com.
Fresh and Local: Seed Exchange
Feb. 21, 2-4 p.m. Join a local food expert for tips on saving seeds and selecting what will work in your garden. Seeds will be available for exchange. If you’ve saved seeds, please bring some in for exchange. All seeds provided are Non-GMO, organic. RPL, East Branch, 6685 E. State St., Rockford, (815) 965-7606, option 2, rockfordpubliclibrary.org.
1859 Belden School Open House
Feb. 21, March 21, April 18, 1-4 p.m. Begins with a one-hour presentation by a local resident who shares his/her knowledge and expertise, followed by an open-house format. Docents will share the history of this restored one-room schoolhouse, built in 1859. Free. Belden School, 52 Heatherdowns Lane, Galena, Ill.,
(815) 777-2000, beldenschool.org.
Return of Bison to Nachusa Grassland
Feb. 22, 2 p.m. After a 200 year absence, bison have returned, and staff and volunteers have been spent 28 years creating the proper habitat. Learn more about the bison herd, site preparations, ecosystem research and visitor expectations from Nachusa Grassland’s volunteer Betty Higby. Free. Winter Lecture Series. Byron Forest Preserve, byronforestpreserve.com.
Lilies in the Rock River Valley
Feb. 28, 9:30-11:30 a.m. Learn simple propagation techniques, hear about the wide variety of lilies that flourish in our area and how to design a garden with lilies so some are in bloom all summer long, from Woodruff Imberman, past president of the Lily Society. Klehm Arboretum, Rockford, (815) 965-8146.
POWs of the Civil War
Feb. 28, 1 p.m. Learn about Chicago’s Camp Douglas, Union training facility and from 1862-1865, a Confederate POW camp that held 30,000 prisoners. Presentation by David Keller using Civil War photos, PowerPoint and static displays. $5/members free. Tinker Cottage, Rockford, tinkercottage.com.
Feb. 28, 2 p.m. See what wildflowers look like in the winter and take a short hike to find plants under the snow. Free. Byron Forest Preserve, byronforestpreserve.com.