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There are few things that I enjoy more than spending time exploring the outdoors with my kids. These are some of the few remaining places where children can still have unstructured play and free exploration, while building a strong sense of belonging and respect for nature. Few places can teach us so much about correlations and interactions in nature as creeks do, because you can experience forest and aquatic ecosystems in the same spot.
You do not need a lot to have a great day, some of our favorite activities are:
-Catching and releasing aquatic animals (you only need a net and a container to hold your critters while you check them out)
-Craft boat race (use recyclables to create a boat and let it race down the creek)
-Floating down the river in inner tubes or boards
-Building sand castles or rock structures
-Enjoying a picnic by the water
You can find more outdoor activities for kids on the Nature Conservancy Nature Rocks website. Click here.
As Oakville residents, we are very lucky to have patches of urban forest, natural areas and creeks within walking distance from every home. Take advantage of these opportunities and get out and explore with your family and friends. You can find a complete list of trails via the Town of Oakville. Click here to visit their website.
~ Beatriz (OCA Tree and Education Program Coordinator)
Exploring Oakville’s urban creeks and valley trails this weekend?
Bring along your camera!
Oakvillegreen invites you to participate in our first ever Discover Your Creek Photo Contest! Share your discoveries in Oakville’s urban creeks and valley lands and have a chance to win great prizes.
UPDATE: Prizes include two tickets for Toronto Maple Leafs verses Winnipeg Jets (November 4, 2015), a $100 Henry’s gift card, and a $60 gift card for a 16×20” print from Oakville Blueprinting.
HOW TO ENTER:
1. Take a photo in one of Oakville’s urban river valleys, creeks or valley land trails.
3. Tell family and friends to “Like” your photo when it is posted on Oakvillegreen’s Facebook page. (Note: our judges will take number of “Likes” into consideration when determining our winners, so enter early and share).
Please read the Full Contest Rules before entering. Email only digital photos (250 KB to max 5MB). Up to three entries per person. All entries due October 5th, 2015.
In case you hadn’t noticed, SPRING 2015 has been all about helping bees and butterflies! We were happy to partner with many schools, community groups and faith communities to plant pollinator gardens across town. Many more Oakville residents purchased native plants from us and added host plants and nectar sources for our native bees, honey bees and butterflies to their gardens. Also as of July 1st, Ontario became the first jurisdiction in North America to protect bees and other pollinators through new rules to reduce the number of acres planted with neonicotinoid-treated corn and soybean seeds by 80 per cent by 2017.
At the Anglican Church of the Incarnation in Oakville, planting a patch of habitat for pollinators went hand-in-hand with planting a new community food garden. In partnership with the Greening Sacred Spaces program, Oakvillegreen was happy to share pollinator and native plant knowledge with the community at the Anglican Church of the Incarnation and help them install a pollinator garden.
Nadine Asmis, the community garden coordinator shared this post with us about their experiences:
Growing Food, Together. Starting a Cooperative Community Garden
“I always wondered why somebody didn’t do something about that, then I realized I am somebody” – Lily Tomlin.
There seems to be this growing disconnect between people and the food they consume. How and when popular foods grow, such as asparagus or peanuts, is not common knowledge. I thought to myself: “We should know this. Food is a necessity of life”. So how do we learn about food? Community gardens are an excellent way of learning all about gardening and food production from others. If you live in the city and don’t have a lot of space, you can purchase a plot at your local community garden and grow your own produce. But what about those of us who don’t have the resources to access a garden?
The community garden started at the Anglican Church of the Incarnation aims to resolve this problem. Our new cooperative garden is open to everyone at no cost. Our goal is to grow food while restoring our connection with nature and each other. The harvest will be divided amongst our volunteers and with the local food bank. Already we are growing tomato, kale, bean, pepper plants and much more! We would love to expand the number of raised beds in the future as well as start a youth garden completely run by children. Our goals may be modest, but it is small steps such as these that teach us to live healthier, more sustainable lifestyles.
I would like to say thank you to everyone who has helped turn our dream into a reality. And thanks to Oakvillegreen for providing us with a beautiful pollinator garden!
If you have any questions regarding our gardens or community gardens in general, please feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.