May 6-11, 2024
Theme: Nurturing Nature:
Exploring the many ways in which connecting with nature nurtures us physically and emotionally - and many ways in which we can nurture our shared natural spaces and systems through sound stewardship. Hikes, activities, and information geared towards ages 10 and up.
Weekday Activities: May 6-10
A smorgasbord of naturalist-led hikes and stewardship activities held at various times and places in and around Murfreesboro. Choose your own adventure! Hear first-hand from natural resource professionals about their work, experience new ways of connecting with nature, explore local environmental issues, and discover citizen science projects and volunteer stewardship opportunities in and around Murfreesboro. Sign up for one or do them all!
Click on a title below for details.
Take a hike with an expert and learn about the plants and animals in your choice of several different local ecosystems. Group size is limited, and pre-registration required. There will be naturalist-led walks on Saturday, too! (See the Expo section.)
Roll up your sleeves and join the Outdoor Murfreesboro team and our partners on projects that will both get your hands dirty and make a difference for our natural surroundings. Group size is limited, and pre-registration is required.
Conservation in Action Expo: Saturday, May 11
9 am - 3 pm at the Wilderness Station, Barfield Crescent Park
Conservation Expo activities are led by naturalists, professional natural resource managers, and other knowledgeable folks who will share their expertise with you. Check out the native plant sale, exhibits by natural resource organizations, presentations, hands-on workshops, and naturalist-led hikes. Or enjoy self-guided hikes, the Wilderness Station Nature Center & Gift Shop, and the Nature Play Area.
Click on a title below for details.
Purchase locally-native (indigenous) plants to enhance your landscaping and support backyard wildlife, then park them in our plant corral while you take part in Conservation Days activities. (Be sure to take a Native Garden tour during the day for more inspiration!)
Learn more about MIPP, the Murfreesboro Indigenous Plant Project
Morning or afternoon. Hike the fabulous Barfield Backcountry trails with a naturalist and learn about the plants and animals that call it home.
Working for Wildlife Kiosk Ongoing Get an up-close look at some native Tennessee wildlife. Enjoy live animal presentations throughout the day, and engage with working professionals dedicated to wildlife conservation, rehabilitation, education, and research. Learn the tricks-of-the-trade, and practice using some of the equipment they use in their respective fields.
Native Garden Tours Morning or afternoon Learn about the plants in the Wilderness Station's native garden and native rain garden and gain some handy planting tips and techniques. Get inspiration and species selection guidance for your own yard!
Intro to iNaturalist: CitSci in Your Pocket Morning or afternoon It's not only a great way to learn more about the natural world you see around you - you can also contribute to biodiversity science as a Citizen Scientist using iNaturalist! Help Outdoor Murfreesboro's Natural Resource team inventory the native plants and animals in our area by recording your observations online. (Observations in Murfreesboro)
ADA Buggy Trail Rides 2 in a.m., 2 in p.m. Get away from the crowd and take a naturalist-guided spin down the trail in the Barfield Backcountry. Outdoor Murfreesboro’s wheelchair accessible golf cart accommodates up to five passengers in regular seating and one passenger in a wheelchair (with safety tie-downs). These 45-minute rides are exclusively for mobility-impaired individuals and their caretakers. Pre-registration required.
Many thanks to the organizations, businesses, and individuals who pitch in to bring so much depth and substance to Conservation Days on top of their own projects and initiatives! These are the folks who work every day to better understand and care for Middle Tennessee's rich natural heritage and the businesses that provide products that allow individuals to do the same. Visit with them during the Conservation in Action Expo on Saturday of Conservation Days: Learn about their projects and products, find volunteer opportunities and other ways to support their efforts, and delve into ways in which you can contribute to the health of our local natural areas and systems as an independent natural resource steward.