There’s so much to do in our region! Here’s a look at upcoming lectures and educational enrichment.
Basket Making Workshop
April 8, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Anne Johnson and the Sinnissippi Basket Guild guide you in the creation of a beautiful handmade basket bowl. All materials provided. Bring a sack lunch. Cherry Valley Public Library, 755 E. State St., Cherry Valley, Ill., (815) 332-5161, cherryvalleylib.org.
Bontanica: A Gardener’s Luncheon
April 8, 10 a.m. Historian and actress Leslie Goddard brings to life “Slient Spring,” the story of noted author and environmentalist Rachel Carson. Lunch by Greenfire. Klehm Arboretum & Botanic Garden, 2715 S. Main St., Rockford, (815) 965-8146, klehm.org/2016/04/botanicadate.
Breakfast with the Butterflies
April 9-30, Sat. 8:30-10 a.m. or 9:30-11 a.m. Enjoy breakfast from Granite City while surrounded by butterflies. Children receive a special butterfly gift. Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens, 1354 N. 2nd St., Rockford, (815) 987-8858, nicholasconservatory.com.
Pet Therapy Program
April 10, 10:30 a.m.-noon; 1-3 p.m. Meet some adorable dogs that are trained to provide comfort to hospital patients. Learn what these amazing canines can do and how your dog could be part of the “Loving Tails” therapy program. Discovery Center Museum, 711 N. Main St., (815) 963-6769, discoverycentermuseum.org.
April 12, noon. Dr. William Gahan, assistant professor of English at Rockford University, presents a lecture on Shakespeare’s sonnets. Feel free to bring a lunch. Rare Books Room, Howard Colman Library, Rockford University, 5050 E. State St., Rockford, (815) 964-9713, mendelssohnpac.org.
Finding Home: The Immigrant Experience
April 14-24, times vary. Journey back to Rockford in 1920 during this theatrical program in the Many Faces, One Community exhibit. Visitors will meet several characters and discover what life was like for newly arrived immigrant families. Midway Village Museum, 6799 Guilford Road, Rockford, (815) 397-9112, ext. 104, midwayvillage.com.
Rockford Police K-9 Demonstration
April 16, 2 p.m. Watch a Rockford Police Officer and his canine partner demonstrate how dogs help police fight crime. Then stick around to ask questions and meet this trained police dog. Discovery Center Museum, Rockford, (815) 963-6797, discoverycentermuseum.org.
Going Native in Your Garden
April 21, 6-7:30 p.m. Nathan Huff of Teach ‘Em to Fish Landscaping is on hand to discuss creating a sustainable garden using native wildflowers. Cherry Valley Public Library, Cherry Valley, Ill., (815) 332-5161, cherryvalleylib.org.
Lotusland’s Sustainable Horticulture
April 21, 7 p.m. Hear a presentation covering applied ecology and entomology, organic fertilizers, compost, mulches and other sustainable concepts that are easily applied for home gardening. Anderson Japanese Gardens, 318 Spring Creek Road, Rockford, (815) 316-3306, andersongardens.org.
Jellyfish and Sea Star Dissection
April 21, 7 p.m. Dissect a jellyfish and a sea star. Register in advance. Midwest Museum of Natural History, 425 W. State St., Sycamore, Ill., (815) 895-9777, mmnh.org.
Japanese Tea Ceremony
April 23-24, Sat. 9:30 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 2:30 p.m.; Sun. 9 a.m.-noon. Enjoy a traditional Japanese Flower Viewing Tea Ceremony which provides a hands-on lesson focused on tea serving procedures and guest etiquette. Anderson Japanese Gardens, Rockford, (815) 316-3306, andersongardens.org.
Rockford’s Cultural Heritage Celebration
April 23, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. The Cultural Heritage Celebration features ethnic groups from our community’s past and present with educational displays, artifacts and clothing, as well as dancing, live music, crafts and exhibits. Midway Village Museum, Rockford, (815) 397-9112, midwayvillage.com.
Pitney Place Open House Celebration
April 29, 4:30 p.m. Celebrate the opening of Pitney Place – a refuge of hope for homeless women and children who’ve faced substance abuse, domestic violence, family dysfunction and other obstacles. The evening will include a ribbon-cutting, open house tours and a celebration reception. Rockford Rescue Mission, 715 W. State St., Rockford, (815) 316-4176, rockfordrescuemission.org.
Butterfly Monitoring Training
April 30, 9 a.m.-noon. Doug Taron, Ph.D., returns to the Forest Preserves of Winnebago County to delve deeper into the wonderful world of butterfly monitoring. Open to all interested in butterfly identification. Forest Preserve Headquarters, 5500 Northrock Dr., Rockford, (815) 877-6100, winnebagoforest.org.
Dia Del Nio (Children’s Day)
April 30, 2 p.m. Come celebrate this day with your children. There will be games and a movie. Nordlof Center, 118 N. Main St., Rockford, (815) 987-6660, rockfordpubliclibrary.org/content/nordlof-center/nordlof-events.
Annual Plant Sale
May 6-7, Fri. 5-8 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Spend Mother’s Day weekend shopping for this year’s garden stock. Choose from hundreds of plants. Afterwards, stroll through the Klehm grounds to see what’s blooming. Klehm Arboretum & Botanic Garden, Rockford, (815) 965-8146, klehm.org.
Museums for Mom
May 8, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Celebrate Mother’s Day with free admission for all mothers and grandmothers at five area museums. Pick up a passport at one museum, then visit three more to be entered in a drawing to win free memberships to all five locations: Discovery Center Museum, Burpee Museum of Natural History, Rockford Art Museum, Klehm Arboretum & Botanic Gardens and Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens. Info: visit info.gorockford.com.
Oscar’s Garden Fair
May 13-14, Fri. 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Sat. to 4 p.m. Visit the beautiful grounds of the Taylor Mansion Museum and enjoy this first-time garden fair. Stephenson County Historical Museum, 1440 S. Carroll Ave., Freeport, (815) 232-8419.
The Art of Bonsai
May 19, 7 p.m. Ivan Watters, Midwest Bonsai Board member, covers the philosophy, history, techniques and principals of what makes a bonsai: a dwarfed tree shaped like something found in nature. Anderson Japanese Gardens, Rockford, (815) 316-3307, andersongardens.org.