Women in Nature

October 16, 2021

28th Annual Women in Nature
October 16, 2021

2021 Schedule 

8:00 – 8:30 AM: Check in/registration + social time + breakfast
8:30 – 8:40 AM: Welcome message
8:40 – 9:30 AM: Speaker #1: Jessica Heims
9:45 – 10:30 AM: Hikes ● Leisurely  ● Medium  ● Fast
Alternative options: Chair massages from Carlson College or visit the vendors
10:30-11 AM: Social time, visit vendors, chair massages, explore the Creek Exhibit
11:00 AM – 11:45 AM: Catered lunch, visit vendors, chair massages, get outside!
12:00 – 12:50 PM: Speaker #2: Christy Kintzel
1:05 – 1:50 PM: Hikes ● Leisurely  ● Medium  ● Fast
Alternative options: Chair massages from Carlson College or visit the vendors
2:05 – 2:55 PM: Speaker #3: Andrea Parks
3:00 PM: Door Prizes and Closing Comments


October 16, 2021

28th Annual Women in Nature
October 16, 2021
Now is the time for women to nurture the body that has carried them far, feed the soul that has guided them and steward the land that has served them. Join us for one of the longest-running events at Indian Creek Nature Center: the 27th annual Women in Nature workshop. This event is sure to leave you refreshed and connected to nature.
What to Bring 

Please plan to dress for both indoor an outdoor experiences during Women in Nature. We recommend the following: comfortable layered clothing, sturdy shoes for walking/hiking, refillable water bottle, hat, and sunglasses. Note: The best part about Women in Nature is being outside in all weather! Feedback from previous participants has been outstanding regarding the outdoor experience of the hikes in rain. Please bring a rain jacket and rain boots, if appropriate. We will have a limited number of ponchos to borrow.

Why attend Women in Nature? 

Nature Center board member, Emily Flowergarden’s, top two reasons to attend:

  •  An opportunity to have a weekend “getaway”, extremely rare to stay so close and feel like a weekend retreat.
  • She wanted to set aside time to enjoy ICNC with a purpose and the comfort of a ladies event with several choices and as well as having a “safe” place to just be.

2021 speakers

Jessica Heims, Paralympic Athlete

Jessica is a Swisher, Iowa native who has found passion in life through a unique athletic journey. She was born with amniotic banding syndrome which caused her right leg to be amputated at one year old. As she grew older, she found a love of the sport of track and field and learned to battle the difficulties that come with being a disabled athlete. During the latter years of high school she made the decision to compete on a global level and made Team USA for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Paralympic Games. Since her first Games experience, Jessica has climbed the competitive ranks in her track events, including setting a discus world record during the 2019 track season. Jessica graduated in 2021 from the University of Northern Iowa with a biology degree and competed on the university track team all 4 years. She is currently a member of Team USA and will compete at the Tokyo 2020/2021 Paralympic Games and plans to continue her career as a professional athlete.

Christy Kintzel, Freelance Visual Designer/Vagabond 

Christy Kintzel is a freelance visual designer who’s spent the past ten years working with the brand advertising team at GoDaddy. She’s hiked the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu and the 100-Mile Wilderness in Maine. She’d prefer to be outside and isn’t afraid to try new things (like quitting her job, selling her home, and living in a van). She’s currently working on building out an overland vehicle.

Feel like something’s holding you back from your next big (or small) adventure? Is there a disconnect between your aspirations and your actions? Explore what it takes to get, be or do that thing you’ve been dreaming about, even if it means failing.

Andrea Parks, Toula Yoga Studio Owner

Andrea Parks, owner of Toula Yoga Studio in Cedar Rapids, will lead the whole group in a QiGong and Tai Chi workshop perfect for beginners. Andrea will teach participants a bit about energy (Qi/Prana) and will lead participants through the foundational principles of QiGong and Tai Chi, and a series of exercises for both. All can be memorized to use at home!

QiGong consists of a variety of Chinese therapeutic exercises that have been around for at least 2,500 years. QiGong looks like Tai Chi but is generally easier – some people call it Chinese Yoga. Tai Chi is a Chinese martial art that is most often practiced as a gentle form of exercise and meditation in motion. Both QiGong and Tai Chi can help improve balance and coordination, increase flexibility, strengthen core and lower body muscles, and help manage stress. There is compelling evidence that they can strengthen the immune system and improve cardiovascular health.

This practice will be held outdoors in the beautiful ICNC Woodland Amphitheater or near the restored native Iowa prairie. Dress appropriately for the weather. Bring a water bottle, yoga mat, towel, and any other items that make you comfortable outdoors (sunglasses or hat, bug spray, etc.). In the event of inclement weather this workshop will be moved indoors to the Amazing Space Auditorium.


Maple Syrup Festival