U of I extension

Connie Kuntz

If you want to make sure your kids develop an appreciation of nature, the University of Illinois Extension is offering the Wee Naturalists Virtual Program and it is led by Peggy Doty. She's the environmental stewardship educator for the U of I Extension. 

Wee Nats is in its third year. It's virtual this year because of the pandemic. Still, Doty wants to make sure kids get outside, as long as they bundle up.

Mary Nelson

The University of Illinois Extension is offering Master Naturalist Training. Mary Nelson is a spokesperson for the program and says the term “naturalist” is personal to each individual.

"To me," she said, "a naturalist is someone who appreciates, understands and respects the natural world. They have a love for nature, and they give something back to nature and their local communities through volunteer activities."

Nelson said the program is for anyone who is 18 or older.

Photo provided by U of I Extension.

If you are trying to avoid extra stress and pounds this holiday season, the University of Illinois Extension is offering “Health at Home Holiday Edition” webinars. 

Diane Reinhold is a nutrition and wellness educator with the Extension. She said the webinars are an opportunity to help people deal with seasonal challenges.

"Often we feel overwhelmed with the holidays," she said. "So taking 30 minutes out of your day to gain some skills and maybe laugh and have a little fun is our goal."

To Avoid Hitting A Deer, Look For 'Eyeshine'

Oct 28, 2020
Connie Kuntz

It's deer mating season. It's also deer hunting season and the fall harvest. That means deer are out and about. They're looking for love, safety and food -- especially at dusk and dawn.

Juanpablo Ramirez-Franco

COVID-19 has caused disruptions in how families get their food. That’s one reason why more people are growing their own. 

The concept of a victory garden dates to the Second World War. Food was in high demand, and canned food was rationed for the war effort. Sarah Vogel is an educator at the University of Illinois Extension. She said the federal government encouraged citizens to grow their own food and provided lots of information on how to do so.

Peggy Doty

The DeKalb County Community Foundation recently approved a $5000 grant for the DeKalb County Forest Preserves. That means Russell Woods Forest Preserve is getting a new field station. Peggy Doty has been an educator with the University of Illinois Extension energy and environmental stewardship team for 21 years. She wrote the grant proposal specifically for RWFP.

"In the summer, we have a lot of mosquitoes," she said. "We're right on the river, and I get children who come to summer camp, and we get annihilated sometimes."

Susan Stephens

While politicians debate the merits of legalizing recreational cannabis, many Illinois farmers are more interested in its biological cousin, hemp. Last year, Illinois lawmakers made it legal to grow hemp. Now the race is on for the state to put rules in place in time for the planting season. In this week's Friday Forum, WNIJ's Susan Stephens talks with some of the people pushing to get the hemp industry off the ground.

Poverty Simulation Stirs Empathy And Emotions

Oct 31, 2018
Sarah Jesmer

Organizers of a poverty simulation held recently in northern Illinois countered the phrase "Pull yourself up by your bootstraps" by asking "What if you don't have bootstraps?"

Peggy Doty

Coyotes are feeling more at home in urban areas, where their favorite food, the rodent, is plentiful. Recent encounters with increasingly bold coyotes in Madison, Wisconsin have some residents worried about their pets.

Residential Fight Against Emerald Ash Borer

May 10, 2013
Mike Moen

The Emerald Ash Borer continues to spread in northern Illinois. Experts say it’s inevitable the tree-killing insect will reach new territory. They urge communities in its path to take steps to reduce the impact. But it’s not just a problem for local officials. Residents have also joined the fight.