Center News

An Alternative to Black Friday

Black Friday is notorious for all-day shopping, long lines, and overall consumerism. But there’s another way to enjoy the Friday after Thanksgiving—sharing nature experiences with your loved ones. Retailer REI created the #OptOutside movement to encourage their employees and customers to spend this day outdoors instead of in stores. In fact, they close all of their locations on this day. We agree that being together outdoors is a great way to spend the day. So #OptOutside on this Black Friday and explore nature at Schlitz Audubon.

Activities at the Center

In order to enhance your experience, we have added activities for this day. From Noon to 4:00pm, you can visit with our Animal Ambassadors. Our volunteers will show you one of our resident animals, such as a Corn Snake, Box Turtle, or Blue Tongued Skink. Learn about these animals’ wild counterparts while you get to know them up close. It’s also a great time to visit our Snapping Turtle Emerson in his new home.

We will also offer two guided hikes at 11:00am and 2:00pm. See what’s happening at Schlitz Audubon during this late fall season and learn about nature with guidance from one of our Volunteer Naturalists. Join us in the Great Hall for a special Friday edition of Word with a Bird from 1:00pm to 2:00pm. Meet a live bird of prey from our Raptor Program! We will talk about the specific skills, traits, and adaptations that are unique to that bird.

Exploring our Trails and Habitats

If you explore on your own, you may wish to climb to the top of our 60-foot observation tower and take in the sight of Lake Michigan, as well as the panoramic view of our forest’s trees. Seeing vistas like these creates lasting memories.

Enjoy spending time on our Gateway Trail to see the landscape of the changing season. Our wheelchair-friendly boardwalk takes you through prairie and is the perfect place to hike while pushing a stroller.

Hike to Mystery Lake or head down to the shore of Lake Michigan. See these water bodies before they are taken over by winter ice. It’s a great time to capture photographic memories of the lake, as well as our other habitats, before winter’s deep freeze arrives.

After you’re done with your hike, head into the Great Hall for a hot drink and warm up by our fire. All of these activities are free with membership or admission.

Stop by Schlitz Audubon on the Friday after Thanksgiving if you decide to #OptOutside. Enjoy this opportunity to continue giving thanks with your family and share in the beauty of the Center.