Go Ask Mom

Go Ask Mom

Prairie Ridge offers nature play day series

Posted June 30, 2014

Kid-sized groundhog tunnel.

Prairie Ridge Ecostation, the outdoor lab in west Raleigh that's part of the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences, is offering a new nature play days series on Tuesdays this summer.

Starting Tuesday, July 1, the site will feature some kid-friendly, hands-on activities in its Nature PlaySpace. They are scheduled for 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., Tuesday, through Sept. 2. The topics, which change each week, explore things like mud, worms, weaving and boats.

Here's the schedule: 

July 1, leaf rubbing: If you were a leaf, what color would you be? Create a masterpiece of colorful leaves by making leaf rubbings onto paper.

July 8, draw: Have you ever drawn with a rock? Graphite is a rock is found in our stream that can be used for writing and drawing. What kind of picture can you make with a rock?

July 15, mud pies: A little bit of water, a hunk of mud, a sprinkle of this and that, and a few minutes in the sun. Join us by the mud bowl and make your favorite mud dish.

July 22, weaving: Learn the art of weaving.

July 29, measuring: Today is all about measuring the things around us. By using different measuring tools we can measure height, length, width, and volume of water, logs, trees, and anything else we find.

Aug. 5, painting: Sit under the shade of a tree and enjoy the calming stroke of the paint brush while creating your very own masterpiece.

Aug. 12, cardboard box creations: What can you do with a cardboard box? Use your imagination and creativity to transform your box into a house, community center, arcade game, stage, or a cardboard maze or anything your imagination comes up with.

Aug. 19, tightrope walking: Waiting for a better description of this one!

Aug. 26, worms: Enjoy a worm craft and learn some fun facts about worms! When you are finished you can find/make a home for your worm.

Sept. 2, boats: Design your very own boat by using recycled and natural materials and then see if it can float.

The programs are free, no pre-registration is required. This is a parent-child activity. For more information, contact Mandy Cuskelly at or 919-707-9934.

Also this summer, the destination includes variety of other regular programs. They include the storytimes at 10:30 a.m., Thursdays.

Herp Hunters, when visitors go on a hunt for reptiles and amphibians, is 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., July 1, July 15, Aug. 5 and Aug. 19. Kids under 16 must be with an adult. Be ready to walk on uneven surfaces and in full sun. It's free. 

Also, mark your calendars for Moths at Night from 8 p.m. to midnight, July 19. Bring your flashnights for this after-hours event that lets visitors see what's flying about at night with the help of black lights. It's free, no preregistration is required. For more information, contact Chris Goforth at 919-707-8882 or



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