Skip to main content
You are the owner of this article.
You have permission to edit this article.
Edit
Watch now: Families gather at Rock Springs for Fall Harvest Festival
breaking top story

Watch now: Families gather at Rock Springs for Fall Harvest Festival

  • 0

Senior program naturalist at the Macon County Conservation District, Brock Rowland talks about the Fall Harvest Festival at Rock Springs Nature Center.

DECATUR — After a week filled with scattered thunderstorms and cooler weather on the way, Nikki Newbon said this weekend was the perfect time to take her nephew out to Rock Springs Conservation Area before the weather worsened.

Macon County Conservation District to honor late director Richie Wolf

“I’ll come here to just go on a walk and then anytime they have any events posted, I always keep my eye out and I’ll bring my nephew with to get him out to explore and do different things,” Newbon said. “It’s also a beautiful day, so you don’t want to waste it because it’s getting cold and we’re going to be cooped in for a while.”

The Macon County Conservation District hosted its annual Fall Harvest Festival on Saturday afternoon at Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Lane, after having to cancel it last year due to the pandemic.

Families and friends celebrated the fall weather with outdoor activities which included archery lessons with three-dimensional animal targets, canoeing on Rock Springs Pond, marshmallow roasting, opportunities to either paint pumpkins or toss them, and wagon rides around the entire conservation area.

Fall Harvest Festival at Rock Springs Nature Center

Volunteer Charles Jarvis demonstrates how to handle a bow before families begin their archery lessons with three-dimensional animal targets at the Fall Harvest Festival at Rock Springs Nature Center.

Wool spinning demonstrations and free tours of the Homestead Prairie Farm were also on the agenda.

New this year was a free scavenger hunt along the Discovery Trail for children and adults to hunt for clues and solve riddles. When finished, children could pick out prizes while adults entered a raffle for a $50 gift certificate to use toward conservation district activities in the coming year.

Fall Harvest Festival at Rock Springs Nature Center

Families and friends canoe on Rock Springs Pond for the Fall Harvest Festival at Rock Springs Nature Center. 

“It’s just about getting people out into nature and getting them interested,” said Brock Rowland, senior program naturalist at the conservation district. “We have a lot of events for families to come out here and participate in and we’re always looking to expand.”

Rowland said since they had to cancel last year, this is the first time for a lot of younger kids to experience the fall festival and grow closer to nature with others in the community.

“This is really just a way that the conversation district can give back to its community and get people interested in nature again,” Rowland said.

Fall Harvest Festival at Rock Springs Nature Center

Families and friends celebrated the weather at the Fall Harvest Festival at Rock Springs Nature Center with opportunities to either paint pumpkins or toss them as well as wagon rides around the entire conservation area. 

Conservation district naturalist Charles Hirst said the festival has been going on for years and he would always bring his kids out to experience it, but now he expects them to bring their own kids to continue on the tradition.

Watch now: How these Central Illinois residents go all out for Halloween 🎃 👻 🦇 🕷️

“I brought my youngest here when he was in Earth Adventures and now he came back from the Marine Corps and married our history intern,” Hirst said. “It’s a multi-generational tradition now.”

Others, like Katie Eytchison, who brought her husband Rob and son Lawton to the festival, said she has been going to Rock Springs since she was a small child and now hopes this experience can be carried down for generations.

Fall Harvest Festival at Rock Springs Nature Center

Katie Eytchison (left) with her husband Rob (center left) and son Lawton (front left) enjoy their afternoon at the Fall Harvest Festival at Rock Springs Nature Center with friends Sian Rankin (center right), her husband Eric (right) and daughter Scarlett (front right). 

“During the pandemic we came out here a lot and walked probably several times a week because it was one of the things we could do,” Eytchison said. “I think it’s a wonderful resource in our community and I hope a lot more people take advantage of it.”

Listen now: Decatur's hand-painted pianos are spreading art, music

0 Comments
0
0
0
0
0

Get local news delivered to your inbox!

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Related to this story

After opening in July 2019 and experiencing some difficulties this past year, the Crafting Experience Creative Gym will be closing its doors at the end of October.

Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.

Topics

News Alerts

Breaking News