Boy Scout Workshops

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Cub & Boy Scout Workshops

Maple Syruping Program

Maple Syruping | Annually each March

Participants learn about the lore and history of this unique North American heritage activity, and explore the Native American, colonial and pioneer history of ‘sugaring.’  The teacher-naturalist shares that maple syrup is the first agricultural crop harvested in Iowa each year. The physiology and identification of maple trees is reviewed. Then participants visit the sugar bush (woods where the maple trees grow) and use tools (bit & brace, hammer, spile and collection bucket) to tap a maple tree. Groups then tour the sugarhouse to learn how sap is boiled to create maple syrup. Each participant enjoys a sample of the maple syrup made at Indian Creek Nature Center on a small ice cream cone.

Boy Scout Merit Badge Day

Boy Scout Merit Badge Day | 2017 date TBA

Calling all Boy Scouts! Merit Badge Day at Indian Creek Nature Center gives you an opportunity to work with a team of experts in Environmental Science, Wilderness Survival, Hiking, Bird Study, Geology, Nature, Orienteering, Mammal Study, and Weather. Sign up for a morning session and afternoon session, each lasting three hours. A one-hour lunch break will be provided from 11 a.m.-Noon. Scouts and adults are responsible for bringing their own lunch.

Pre-registration required.

**Prior to arriving for merit badge day, scouts are expected to have read through their corresponding merit badge book and to have thought about the requirements.

Morning session options:
8-11 a.m.

Bird Study: We will be able to complete requirements 1-6 during your workshop session. Requirement 7 can be completed at the Nature Center during one of the following expert led programs: Birding-May 14th, 8 AM; Birding-June 3, 6:30 PM. Requirement 8 must be completed on your own.

Environmental Science: Our expert requests that you complete requirements 1, 2 and 3b2 prior to your arrival. You will be working with data you collect and discussing the impacts. You will review requirements 1 and 2, discuss 3b2, complete 3a1, 3c2, and 5. Options for setting up requirement 4 will be discussed and pointed out, and requirements 1 and 2 will be reviewed. Requirements 3d, 3e, 3f, 4 and 6 will need to be completed on your own. **Please do not bring your cell phones to this workshop.

Hiking: We will be able to complete requirements 1-4. Please come with a 10 mile hike in mind that you would like to do, and a map of that area. Requirements 5-7 must be completed on your own.

Orienteering: We will be able to complete requirements 1-6 during your workshop session. Limited opportunities to complete requirements 7-10 with the Nature Center staff are available. You must speak to a staff member to confirm your involvement and work out details well in advance. Possible dates include May 20th, 6:30-8 pm (Arrive at 5 pm to set up course), and June 18th, 1-2:30 (Arrive at 11 to set up course). Requirements 7-10 must be pursued on your own.

Weather: Weatherman Justin Gehrts will walk you through requirements 1-9. Requirements 10 and 11 will need to be completed on your own after the workshop; however, Justin will provide resources for your investigation of requirement 11.

Afternoon session options (choose one):
(Noon – 3 p.m.)

Environmental Science (same description as morning)

Geology: We will be able to complete requirements 1-5, (All requirements!) of this badge during your workshop session. We will be working through option 5a.

Hiking (same description as morning)

Nature Study: We will be able to complete requirements 1-3,4a, 4b, and 4c. We will attempt 4e, but cannot guarantee success. One (or two, depending on 4e) other requirement from 4 (d, f, or h) will need to be completed on your own.

Wilderness Survival: We will be able to complete requirements 1-5, 7, and 9-12. Methods for requirement 6 will be practiced and discussed, but if the requirements aren’t achieved at the workshop more work will be needed on your own. Shelter building will be reviewed, but requirement 8’s overnight stay must be completed on your own elsewhere.

Tiger Workshops

Backyard Jungle/Tigers in the Wild | November 5

Complete two required adventures in one workshop! In Backyard Jungle, take a hike around the Nature Center and experience the sights and sounds. Build an easy birdhouse and learn about birds. Go on a one foot hike with a magnifying glass. (You will need to plant a tree/plant and hang the bird house on your own to finish the adventure.)
In Tigers in the Wild, go on a hike to look for plants and animals. Talk about leave no trace, the outdoor code; the Cub Scout six essentials; and find out what it’s like to carry your own gear. Spend some time learning about plants, animals and trees in our area, and finish with a campfire show put on by you and your fellow Tigers.

The Sky is the Limit | December 9

Use binoculars and telescopes, and talk about constellations, how to use star charts, jobs for people who study the stars, and more. Create your own constellation and give it a name! (Requirement #3 may require additional research, and you will be responsible for #7).

Wolf Workshop

Wolf Day: Call of the Wild, Paws on the Path, Find your Way, and Howling at the Moon | December 17

We’ll have great fun making our way through requirements for all four adventures! (Find Your Way is an Elective Adventure, the other three are Required Adventures.) Tie knots and play games. Learn about animals, bugs and birds. Pack items you need for camping and hiking. Gather around the campfire and create your own exciting campfire skit! End the afternoon with your pack on a one-mile hike and put your compass skills to the test.

Bear Workshop

Fur, Feathers and Ferns | December 10

Go for a hike — snow or shine! — and look for signs of animals, birds and plants on this Required Adventure. Look for signs of wildlife outside. Do you know who’s endangered and why? Investigate the species that no longer live here. Have a closer look at plants with a magnifying glass, and learn how to take care of an indoor herb garden.

Webelos Workshops

Castaway | October 29

Have you ever wondered what supplies you would need if you were stranded on a desert island? Come learn which tools and skills would come in handy in an outdoor emergency. Light a fire, make a shelter, learn about outdoor survival kits, and cook a snack over a campfire. This workshop will meet all Castaway requirements except 2.b, and assembling your own survival kit.

Into the Wild | October 15 & April 15

Learn about birds and flyways, and practice your bird watching skills. Build a terrarium and learn how to take care of it. Play the food chain game, and think about different parts that humans play. Explore a wetland and talk about the importance of aquatic ecosystems. (Note: we will not complete every requirement for this adventure.)

Into the Woods | October 15 & April 15

Take this workshop with Into the Wild, or on its own. Trees are everywhere! What kind are they? Learn how trees work, which trees you’re likely to find in your backyard, how we use trees and more.

Earth Rocks! | January 14

Have you ever wanted to know more about rocks? Come to the Nature Center to find out why geology is important to you! We’ll identify rocks, test minerals and learn about Moh’s hardness scale. You’ll find out about Iowa’s geologic past, and get to take home a little souvenir.