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Tour Inspiring Ecological Restoration Sites Around the Globe with Paddy Woodworth


November 10, 7:00 - 9:00 PM.  
United Church of Oak Park
 848 Lake St., Oak Park 60301


If you want to understand the promise, politics, issues, and controversies behind ecological restoration, there is no better guide than Paddy Woodworth (click on Menu at the top of the page to access his biography and books). In his encouraging book Our Once and Future Planet: Restoring the World in the Climate Change Century he introduces the relatively new science of restoration ecology, devoted to rejuvenating the natural – and human - environments we call home.

You can meet and hear Paddy Woodworth on Tuesday, Nov. 10, from 7 to 9 p.m. at the United Church of Oak Park, 848 Lake Street in Oak Park. Woodworth will offer a tour of restoration projects he has visited all over the globe, ranging from prairies in the Chicago region to the South African bush; and from ultralight pilots teaching whooping cranes how to migrate the length of a continent to the restoration of bogs in his native Ireland.

Along the way, he will help us grapple with some of the difficult questions that confront us as we attempt to heal the wounds that we have inflicted on our planet. Is there a dark side to restoration? What about the impact of climate change? How do we call a halt to the assault on nature that created the need for restoration in the first place? And most importantly, what can we do as individuals and communities to make a difference?

Woodworth’s presentation is sure to spark important discussions for our community and provide grounds for hope as we move forward together. The program is co-sponsored by West Cook Wild Ones, Green Community Connections, PlanItGreen, Du Page Wild Ones and the Oak Park Public Library.

About Paddy Woodworth: 

Paddy Woodworth (Ireland, 1951): author, journalist, lecturer, tour guide. Woodworth has reported for the Irish Times, and international media, including the International Herald TribuneVanity Fair and the BBC. He has written two acclaimed books on the Basque Country. Science described his recent study of ecological restoration projects worldwide, Our Once and Future Planet: Restoring the World in the Climate Change Century (U of Chicago Press 2013) as “highly readable…valuable access to the central topics, key developments, and contentious issues bound up in the young and evolving field of ecological restoration.” Paddy Woodworth is also a Research Associate at Missouri Botanical Garden, Adjunct Senior Lecturer at UCD, and founder member of the Irish Forum on Natural Capital. 

Sponsored by DuPage Wild Ones, Green Community Connections, PlanItGreen, and West Cook Wild Ones.

November 15 Program with Dennis Paige

When Nature Comes Home To A Condo Association

November 15, 2015, 2:30-4:30 PM, Room 259, The Priory, 7200 W. Division Street, River Forest, IL

Program Description:

More than 45 million acres of lawn are cultivated in the United States, covering more American land than any single crop. Most lawns today are comprised of gas guzzling, high maintenance, non-native species; in short, a biologically sterile landscape. Profiled in the Chicago Tribune, the Daily Herald, Chicagoland Gardening Magazine and the Boston Herald as well as a recipient to the the 2011 Conservation and Native Landscaping Award from the USEPA and the Chicago Wilderness, learn how one community in the suburbs became the first ‘residential’  association to become a member of the Chicago Wilderness by transforming their lawn into an unfolding range of multi-seasonally colorful prairie, woodland, and wetland wildflowers, forbs, sedges, grasses and native rain gardens. An inspirational program to touch the hearts and minds of those who wish to create native earth friendly landscapes around their properties to enhance biodiversity and environmental health. WTTW Chicago Tonight highlighted this project and described this condominium association as “probably the most extensive native gardens of any residential complex in the Chicagoland area.” See how this effort can help you get started transforming spaces into eco-friendly places.

Dennis Paige received an M.S. in Environmental Education from Lesley University in Cambridge, MA and an M.A.T. in Social Studies from Northwestern University in Evanston, IL. He works as  an interpretive naturalist and habitat restorationist at Spring Valley  Nature Center in Schaumburg where he has been employed there through the Schaumburg Park District for over 28 years. He is an adjunct faculty member of the Chicago Botanic Gardens and Morton Arboretum.

Since 1996 he has been the chief in-house native landscaper for Town Square Condominium Association in Schaumburg. As a unit owner for over  20 years and board member for over 11 years Dennis (currently V.P. of the board) takes great  pride/interest in promoting healthy natural landscapes in his own  community. For 4 years Dennis wrote an award winning weekly column in the Daily Herald titled ‘Green Light Living With Nature’ which explored many ways to live lightly on the Earth. In 2008 Dennis was awarded among his professional conservation peers in the Chicagoland area the 2008 Grassroots Leadership Award in Conservation from the Chicago Audubon Habitat project and the Chicago Wilderness.

Photo: Courtesy of Dennis Paige

Recommended Books from Stephanie's Presentation on October 18th

Teaming with Microbes, Lowefels and Lewis
Life in the Soil, Nardi
Farming with Beneficial Insects, Xerces Society
Attracting Native Pollinators, Xerces Society 

Interesting Articles in Follow-up to Stephanie's Presentation 

From the University Of IL Extension: How Do Insects Survive the Winter? Here are a couple of posts she has written on this issue:
As she mentioned, many other organizations and gardeners are recommending different clean-up practices: 

Blue Water Baltimore: Leave the Leaves
National WildLife Federation: Greening Your Fall Garden Clean-Up
Ecosystem Gardening: Life in the Leaf Litter and A Love of Untidy Wildlife Gardens and Why
Cary Institute of Environmental Studies: Mentions that a Boston University study found that removing leaves eliminates 1/3 of trees' nitrogen needs.


Fall Conference In The Northern Suburbs
Saturday, November 14, 2015 from 8:00 AM - 3:30 PM
Wild Ones 2015 Building a Land Ethic With Native Landscaping Conference presented by the Lake to Prairie Chapter at the College of Lake County in Grayslake, IL.  

Keynote Speaker: Steve Swenson - Aldo Leopold's Land Ethic: The Product of Perspective.

For complete information and registration


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Thanks for your time and for your support of Wild Ones.

Sincerely, The West Cook Wild Ones Team

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