Don't let the snow on the ground fool you. Spring is here! Warmer temperatures, sunny skies, and persistent flower buds peeking up from beneath the ground are all evidence that a new season is upon us. (No matter how stubborn winter has been about leaving.) It's time for bright colors, baby animals, and the sweet scent of blooming flowers!
We can't think of a better way to ring in the coming of spring than with our town's beloved Wildflower Walks, led by professional botanists from Miami University. These colorful walks will once again take place at the Silvoor Biological Sanctuary, a five-acre home to over 60 species of wildflowers. Just minutes from the Miami University campus and with one entrance nestled snugly in a local neighborhood, the Silvoor Biological Sanctuary has been a staple in the Oxford community ever since it was donated to the university by Dr. Robert A. Hefner in 1978. Today, the sanctuary overlaps a mosaic of university and private properties, requiring a creative, collaborative management effort among residents and volunteers.
The Wildflower Walks will take place at 1:00PM on seven consecutive Sundays, beginning on March 25th and ending on May 13th. To participate, all you need to do is meet your guide and fellow walkers at the pavilion located in Peffer Park (off of US 27). Wear shoes that you don't mind getting dirty, and don't forget the camera at home! You're going to want to memoralize all the gorgeous flowers lining the trial.
This year there's a new and fun surprise for all the nature-loving youngins! Amanda Bentley Brymer, curator of the Silvoor Biological Sanctuary, is offering activities for pre- and elementary school kids during certain days of the Wildflower Walk schedule. These dates are: April 8th, April 15th, April 22nd, April 29th, May 6th, and May 13th. (The special activity dates are also marked with an asterik on the schedule below.)
Bring the little ones along to enjoy activities based off of the Pollinator Lesson Plan created by Kelli Scarpa, an Art Education major at Miami Univeristy. Activities will include bingo, birding days (bring your own binoculars!) and a special Mother's Day activity (May 13th) called Mommy Mammals, where kids can create little gifts with the materials provided!
Want to stay up to date on what's happening with the Silvoor Biological Sanctuary and even contribute your own findings? You're in luck! All participants will be given information on how to create an account with the iNaturalist app, find the Silvoor Biological Sanctuary project, and contribute observations and identifications with no more than a camera phone!
Now there's nothing left to do but get your walking shoes ready and your camera (or phone) battery charged! Wildflowers await, and there are plenty of opportunities to see and learn all about them! Happy walking!