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Saturday Field Sessions & Events

Saturday, June 3, 2023 | 6 AM-10 PM

The address for our outdoor seminar site is:

Loess Hills Wildlife Management Area

178th St. & Oak Ave

Castana, IA

(On Google Maps, type in "Loess Hills Prairie Seminar Campsite")

For our indoor events this evening, please come to:

Onawa Community Center

320 10th Street

Onawa, IA 51040

Please click the button below for more information about workshop facilitators/speakers and in-depth event descriptions.

Saturday Field Sessions & Events: Services


PLEASE NOTE: Events and specific offerings may be subject to change. Thank you for your patience and flexibility!

6-7 AM

Birding Walk for All Ages - Mark, Ed, and Lee Brogie

Meet at the campground parking lot for a short bird walk. Some binoculars are provided.

7-8 AM

Yoga - Theresa Dehn

Enjoy a morning yoga class in the heart of the Loess Hills.

7-8 AM


First come, first serve. Provided by Downtown Coffee & Cream. Menu information to come.

8:15-10:10 AM

Breakout Session 1

  • Bird Tour by Auto - Sessions 1 & 2 (with option to return to camp at 10:15 AM) - Ed, Mark, & Lee Brogie [short walk/driving, hands on, all ages]

  • Backpacking 101 - Jane Grace O’Connell [campsite hands on, all ages]

  • Woody Plants for Beginners - Brian Hazlett [short walk, all ages]

  • Loess Hills Bryophytes - Bill Zales [short walk, youth/older students & adults]

  • Nature Awareness & the Art of Mentoring - Chuck Hopp [campsite & short walk, all ages/kid-friendly, hands on]

  • Prairie Photography - Don Poggensee [short walk, hands on, children over 12 & adults]

  • Tending Iowa's Land: Discussing Iowa's Soil, Water, Climate, & Biodiversity Problems & Their Solutions - Connie Mutel, Marlene Ehresman, Dr. Tom Rosburg, Pauline Drobney, & Kathy Woida [campsite, adults & children over 12]

  • Loess Hills Writers Present - Kelly Madigan & others [campsite, adults]

10:15 AM - 12:10 PM

Breakout Session 2

  • Auto Bird Tour - Sessions 1 & 2 (with option to return to camp at 10:15AM) - Ed, Mark, & Lee Brogie [drive/short walk, hands on, all ages]

  • Amphibians & Reptiles of the Loess Hills - Dan Fogell [campsite, hands on, kid-friendly/all ages] 

  • Nature Scavenger Hunt for Kids - Dr. Tom Rosburg & Averie Miller [short walk, hands on, all ages]

  • Diving More Deeply into Prairies - Chris Helzer [short walk, hands on, all ages]

  • Loess Hills Mammals - Bill Zales [campsite, hands on, all ages]

  • Who’s Your Neighbor? A Plant’s-Eye View of the Prairie - Deb Lewis [short walk, hands on, youth/older students & adults]

  • Digital Images - Don Poggensee [campsite, youth/older students & adults]

  • Primitive Hunting Tools: Atlatl - Shayne Bennett [campsite, hands on, youth/older students & adults]

  • Mann Country School Experience - Judy Ehlers [drive/short walk, hands on] NOTE: Presenter will lead caravan from seminar site.

  • Loess Hills Pollinators - Sarah Nizzi [short walk, hands on, all ages]

  • Landowner Options for Creating Public Land & the Advantages for the Landowner & the Environment - Glenn Pollock, Scott Wendell, & Kody Wohlers [possible short drive, adults and children over 12]

12:10-1:10 PM


Provided by Frannie's Cafe

1:15-4 PM

Breakout Session 3

  • Kayaking & Fishing in the Loess Hills (Madigan Pond) - Andrea Porter, Katie Hoeppner, and/or Josh Schaben [drive/short walk, hands on, all ages]

  • Introduction to Archery - Butch Bowman [campsite, hands on, youth/older students & adults]

  • Advocating for the Land - Larry Stone [campsite, older students & adults]

  • Half Session 1:15-2:45 PM: Whooo’s There? - Connie Betts [campsite, hands on, all ages/kid-friendly]

  • Half Session 2:45-4 PM: Insect Safari - Kari Sandage & Intern [short walk, hands on, all ages/kid-friendly]

  • The Hidden Past of the South Jordan Cemetery - Judy Ehlers [drive to cemetery/short walk, older students & adults] NOTE: Presenter will lead caravan from seminar site.

  • Prairie Flora of the Loess Hills - Dr. Tom Rosburg [long walk, hands on, older students & adults]

  • Tracking Migratory Birds Using Wireless & Computer Technology (MOTUS) - Doug Chafa & Glenn Pollock [drive to Blue Lake, hands on, all ages]

4:15 PM

Travel for Dinner

Dinner at the Onawa Community Center

4:30-5:30 PM

Iowa Prairie Network Annual Meeting

Located at the Monona County Conservation Board Office

4:30-6 PM

Dinner & Doors Open for Evening Offerings

Dinner provided by Burn Unit BBQ Catering. Take time to view exhibits and vendor booths and to bid on items in our silent auction to support LHPS.

6-8:30 PM

Children's Programs

  • 6-6:45 PM: Mammals of Iowa - Amy McDermott

  • 6:45-7:30 PM: Activity Session - YMCA

  • 7:30-8:20 PM: Animals of the Prairie - Chuck Hopp

  • 7:30-8:20 PM: My Patchwork Prairie - Northwest Iowa Group Sierra Club

6 PM



6:05-6:30 PM

Iowa Dragoons - Kevin Mason

By convening artists, writers, and naturalists to share space and stories, “On Common Ground” intends to promote the stewardship of Iowa’s Loess Hills by fostering greater awareness of and appreciation for this exceptional natural landscape through print and digital media while exemplifying how place-based experience invigorates collaboration among the Arts, Humanities, and Sciences.

6:35-6:45 PM

2022 LHPS Video Viewing

Tom Schoening will share video content created before this year's seminar.

6:45-7:15 PM


Final bidding for silent auction, which concludes at 7:15 PM.

7:15-8:15 PM

Keynote: Stories of Prairie Diversity & Resilience - Chris Helzer

Prairies are full of fascinating, complex interactions between an incredible diversity of species. Anywhere you look, there are amazing stories to be found – stories of beauty, adaptation, and survival. Prairies are certainly at risk and need our help, but we sometimes spend too much time worrying about their future. Let’s take time to celebrate the wonder of prairies and make sure we remember why they’re worth worrying about in the first place. Chris will also talk about what each of us can do to help ensure that prairies will still be around many generations from now.

8 PM

Closing Remarks and Thank You

Parents, please pick up your children from our children’s programming at this time.

9 PM

Campground Activities - Tyler Ruge

Join us back at the LHPS campsite for nighttime activities, music, & s'mores!

9-10 PM

Frogs and Toads of the Loess Hills and Vicinity - Dan Fogell

Description to come.

9:30 PM

Star Gazing - Omaha Astronomical Society

Observe the night sky away from light pollution!

10 PM

Campsite Quiet Hours Begin

LHPS offerings will resume on Sunday at 6 AM.

Saturday Field Sessions & Events: Schedule
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