Conservation Days

 April 22 & 23, 2022 

CIA-GifBuilding Habitat in a Fragmented World:

Activities, speakers, and exhibits focused on engaging with the natural world

Wilderness Station, Barfield Crescent Park (map)

Come learn about local wildlife habitats and backyard habitat improvement projects you can do yourself. Discover citizen science projects and volunteer opportunities in and around Murfreesboro. Meet representatives from organizations working on habitat issues. 

Hikes, activities, and information geared towards ages 10 and up.

Please check back for updates!

Friday, 3:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. — Nature Walks with Naturalists:

Take a hike with an expert and learn about the plants and animals in your choice of several different local ecosystems. There are naturalist-led walks on Saturday, too - see the Saturday activities section, below!

Wildflower Walk

Small pink, white, and purple wildflowers, mixed, growing with grasses

Horseshoe Glade Natural Area at Siegel Park, with Dr. Jeffery WalckMiddle TN State University

Explore a small yet diverse pocket glade and the 20-acre natural area surrounding it. Meet at Siegel Park Soccer Field Parking   map

Resource Management Walk

Limestone outcroppings among trees in early spring woods, brown leaf litter

Stones River National Battlefield

with John McKay, Stones River National Battlefield

The Best of Both Worlds: Preserving Nature and History at Stones River National Battlefield: Discover the Battlefield's natural resources (cedar glades, native grass fields & forests) and learn how park personnel manage them as part of a cultural landscape. 

Wetlands Walk

Hike at Nickajack Wetland, Murfreesboro, TN.

Nickajack Wetlands, with Rachel Singer, Outdoor Murfreesboro

Explore a 60-acre State-Protected wetland habitat. Meet at Nickajack Wetlands off Red Mile Road   map

Watershed Walk

Two men netting fish in a creek

Location TBA, with Cynthia Allen, Middle TN State University Stormwater Program, and Bonnie Ervin, Stones River Watershed Association

Details TBA 


Speakers   Activities   Exhibitors

7:30-9:00 am: Nature Walks in Barfield Backcountry

Group of adults looking up into trees through binoculars. Autumn

Birding Hike with TBA,Tennessee Ornithological Society - Nashville Chapter, and Emily Moorman, Outdoor Murfreesboro 

Start the day off with a bird identification hike on the Barfield Park back country trail. Meet at the Wilderness Station.  map

Man taking notes by birdhouse. Photo by Sharon

Bluebird Nest Box Monitoring 
with Dawn Thomas, Outdoor Murfreesboro

Learn how to properly maintain and record data for nest boxes on the Bluebird Trail at Barfield Park. map

9:00 am - 4:00 pm   Exhibit Tables and Native Plant Sale Open (Wilderness Station)

Details below


9:30 - 9:40 a.m.

Dawn Thomas, Outdoor Murfreesboro

Outdoor Murfreesboro Education and Outreach: Dawn Thomas, Program Coordinator, Outdoor Murfreesboro

9:40 - 10:30 a.m. Dr. Brian Miller, Middle TN State Univ. Opens in new window

Habitat Needs, Local Habitats, and Current Challenges Facing the Inner Basin: Dr. Brian Miller, Middle Tennessee State University

11:30 - 11:40 a.m.

Rachel Singer, Murfreesboro Parks & Rec Opens in new window

Building Outdoor Murfreesboro: Rachel Singer, Assistant Director, Murfreesboro Parks and Recreation

11:40 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Conservation in Action logo: Leaf, water drop, critter in circle, with text Opens in new window

Building a Backyard Habitat: Lindsey Phillips, Graduate Research Assistant, Dep't of Forestry, Wildlife, and Fisheries, University of Tennessee, Knoxville  

1:00-1:10 p.m.

Kristin Hopkins- Outdoor Murfreesboro Natural Resource Division Opens in new window
Natural Resource Management in Parks: 

Kristin Hopkins, Natural Resource Manager, Outdoor Murfreesboro

1:10-2:00 p.m.

Cooper-Breeden Opens in new windowTN Highway Right-of-Ways: Corridors to Biodiversity Conservation: Cooper BreedenSoutheastern Grasslands Initiative & TN Plant Conservation Alliance

Activities - Choose your own adventure!

From hikes to hands-on workshops, Conservation Days activities are led by naturalists, professional natural resource managers, and other knowledgeable folks who will share their expertise with you.

10:30-11:30 a.m.

A group of children watch and help adults plant a garden in a swale. Opens in new windowConstructing a Rain Garden - Demonstration
Lee Ann Faust, Sumner County UT Cooperative Extension Agent with Sumner County Master Gardeners

Learn how to plan and install a rain garden in your yard that will reduce flooding and runoff issues, conserve water, and trap pollutants carried by stormwater runoff  before they reach streams, rivers, and  groundwater.

barfield greenway Opens in new windowLocal Habitats - Hike

Brian Miller
, MTSU (Tentative)

Hike the trail through the woods behind the Wilderness Station and learn about the various animals, plants, and habitat types that are found there.

Bluebird boxes, Outdoor MurfreesboroBuild Your Own Bluebird House - Activity
Outdoor Murfreesboro Staff 

Build a cedar bluebird house for your yard. No place to put one up yourself? Build one and donate it to our bluebird trail! Purchase kits ($20) and register on-site Saturday morning. Max 15 participants in workshop.

2:00-3:00 p.m. - On-Site Activities

People planting. Photo by Eyoel Kahssay Opens in new windowPlanting Natives in Your Garden - proper planting and placement - Demonstration
Rutherford County Master Gardeners

Learn how to get native plants off to a good start in your yard in this hands-on demonstration in our Native Garden.

iNaturalist-logo Opens in new window

Intro to iNaturalist - Citizen Science in Your Pocket - Demonstration and Hike
Leader TBA

Meet in the Wilderness Station retreat room.

2:30-4:00 p.m. - Off-Site Hikes

Meet at the location designated in the hike description.

Resource Management WalkFlat Rock Cedar Glades and Barrens

Managing for Diversity in Cedar Glades and Barrens: Flat Rock Natural Area - Hike

Sam King, TN Department of Environment and Conservation

Meet at Flat Rock Natural Area at 2:30 for a 90-minute hike through one of Tennessee’s most ecologically significant natural areas.

Exhibits :

9 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Meet the people who work to improve wildlife habitat in the region. Learn about their projects and find volunteer opportunities and other ways to support their efforts. 

Note: We were unable to hold this event as planned in 2020 or 2021. The following organizations had confirmed for 2020, but not all have confirmed yet for 2022. Those who have confirmed for 2022 are marked with an asterisk (*). We will continuously update this page as we hear back from exhibitors. Please check back for updates!

Center for Cedar Glade Studies, MTSU*

Yellow butterfly on purple flower with text: Center for Cedar Glade Studies

Citizen Science for Conservation

Conservation in Action logo: Leaf, water drop, critter in circle, with text

Cumberland River Compact*

Cumberland River Compact logo

MTE Cooperative Solar

Coop Solar Logo

MTSU International Ginseng Institute*

Patchwork quilt featuring ginseng plant

MTSU Stormwater Program*

MTSU Stormwater Program logo

Monarch Meadow

Monarch Meadows

M'boro Water Resources Dept*

Murfreesboro Water Resources logo

M'boro Indigenous Plant Project*


Nashville Foodscapes

Nashville Foodscapes Logo

Nashville TN Ornithological Society*

TN Ornitholigical Society-Nashville Chapter

Outdoor Murfreesboro*


Quail Forever*

Quail Forever Logo

Rutherford County Master Gardeners*

Master Gardeners of Rutherford County logo: Thumbs-up hand with thumb sprouting a plant

Southeastern Grasslands Iniative

Southeastern Grasslands Iniative logo

Stones River National Battlefield*

Stones River National Battlefield logo - Text and image of National Park Service Logo

Stones River Watershed Association*

SWRA logo black2

Sumner County Cooperative Extension*

Sumner County Cooperative Extension-TN Institute of Agriculture logo

Sumner County Master Gardeners*

Sunflower above text: "Sumner County Master Gardeners"


tenngreen logo2

The Land Trust for Tennessee

The Land Trust for TN Logo

TN Environmental Council

TN Environmental Council logo2

TN Greenways & Trails

TN Greenways-Trails logo

TN Native Plant Society*


TN Natural Areas

TN Natural Areas-logo

TN Naturalists Program*

TN Naturalist logo2

TN State Parks - Bioblitz 2020

TN State Parks

USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service


WildOnes of Mid TN

Wild Ones-Mid TN-Logo

Ziggy's Tree Wildlife Rehab

Ziggys Tree-Logo

* Confirmed for 2022