River Bend Nature Center announces a new nature programming initiative called the In Nature Series for 2014. The In Nature Series is designed to provide opportunities for local audiences to connect with the great outdoors. The following is a brief description of the new line of programming that will take place in the new year.

Singles In Nature: Our goal is to provide a casual environment where single men and women in their 20s and 30s can join together to develop new friendships and foster new relationships. All are welcome regardless of orientation, religion, or type of relationship sought. $5 per person; $3 per River Bend member.

January 19th: (1:00-3:00pm) Snowshoeing

February 16th: (1:00-3:00pm) Cross Country Skiing

March 16th: (1:00-3:00pm) Maple Syruping

Grandkids In Nature: Inviting grandparents and grandfriends to come spend quality time with their grandkids at RiverBendNatureCenter. Activities and projects will focus on bridging the generational gap by enjoying time together. January's program will introduce grandparents and grandkids to River Bend's Animal Ambassadors, our bearded dragons, corn snake, hooded rat, and painted turtle. We'll introduce you to each of them and teach you all about their facinating lives and the lives of their wild relatives. Participants will get to interact with the animals as much as the animals and the participants are comfortable interacting. We'll see you at River Bend January 9th for our inaugural Grandkids in Nature program! Open to kids ages 5 to 12 and their grandparents. $5 per family group; $4 per River Bend member family group.

                January 9th: (3:30-5:00pm) Animal Ambassadors Meet and Greet

February 13th: (3:30-5:00pm) Snowshoeing

March 13th: (3:30-5:00pm) Forest Tales: Reading nature stories together at River Bend

Lectures In Nature: Programs designed to bring environmental and historical topics to light with guest speakers from around the state. Learn more about Minnesota and other interesting subjects by attending one of several hour long lectures. $3 for members and $5 for non-members. Snacks included.

February 20th (6:30-7:30pm) Aquatic Invasive Species with Aquatic Invasive Species Specialist, Allison Gamble from SakatahLakeState Park

March 3rd: (6:30-7:30pm) Bird Nests: How do they do that? with author, Clay Christensen

O.W.L.S (Older, Wiser, Livelier, Seniors): River Bend hosts an already vibrant series for seniors that begins with a conservation-minded reading, followed by lunch, and a 30 minute long program on a fascinating natural history topic. $8 for members and $10 for non-members. Lunch included.

                January 15th: (12:00-2:00pm) Snake, Rattle, and Roll: Reptiles of Minnesota

February 19th: (12:00-2:00pm) Conservation Issues with DNR Conservation Officer, Lucas Belgard

March 19th: (12:00-2:00pm) Maple Syruping

Women In Nature: Join us for our all new Women in Nature series, a monthly outdoor skills and natural history-based program specifically for women. Women in Nature (WIN) programs will take place the 2nd Friday of the month and will vary in lengths, times and prices according to the activities planned. River Bend will also have activities for children ages 5 to 12 during the times of the class for participants who wish to bring them. Open to adult women. Cost: $10 per person; $8 for River Bend members.

January’s program will include a Leave No Trace Awareness course, refreshments, and a naturalist-led snowshoe hike for participants and their families. Leave No Trace (LNT) is the leading organization in minimum impact outdoor recreation. The awareness course at River Bend will introduce you to the seven principles and each participant will be awarded a certificate. The course will last about an hour and is a fun and engaging way to learn more about enjoying the outdoors responsibly. After the LNT class we will break for light refreshments and then go outside for a guided snowshoe hike open to WIN participants and their families. Snowshoes will be provided.

January 10th: (5-7pm) Snowshoeing and Leave No Trace Workshop

February 7th: (5-7pm) Cross Country Skiing

March 14th: (5-7pm) Maple Syruping


RiverBendNatureCenter is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that specializes in nature and environmental education. The NatureCenter land includes 743 acres of original and restored natural lands with over ten miles of trails that are open to the public 365 days per year. RiverBendNatureCenter relies on donations and memberships to fund its operations, please join and give today. RiverBendNatureCenter is located on the east side of Faribault, Minnesota, follow the brown nature center signs from the intersection of Shumway Ave. and MN Hwy 60. For more information about RiverBendNatureCenter or their upcoming programs, visit them on the web at www.rbnc.org, on Facebook at fb.me/riverbendMN, or on Twitter @riverbendMN