Meadowlark Prairies Outdoor Lab

It’s Story time!

Grab your favorite cup of joe, some reading glasses and settle in for a quick read. 

Ready? Here goes…

Once upon a time in 1973 the students of St. James had no outdoor learning site. A great idea was formed and one established, The Meadowlark Prairies Outdoor Lab. This was a place for students to go and learn great things about the ecosystem of our area. 

 A graduate student of ’76 recalled their first trip out there and was so excited because they discovered a “new bird”. They learned later, much to their embarrassing dismay, it was a meadowlark and very common. This however, sparked the fascination of bird watching and documenting and they have carried this hobby to this very day.

This is still an important part of our city for students, teachers and parents alike. Last year, 2022, many improvements were made to enhance the quality of the area so that all could observe the ponds, wildflowers, and animals that reside in this beautiful area. There are now two hiking trails, benches at different observation points, shelter is in place and signs identifying the ponds and wildflower area. Hundreds of people visited this past year and we are looking forward to hundreds more.

Have you been out there yet? 

It’s a great place to walk, snowshoe or just relax and enjoy the scenery. Bring your furry friend and play in the dog park after you’re done. You will add enjoyment to what would have otherwise been a normal – humdrum – kind – of – everybody – knows day.

2023 has a lot in store for this lovely Meadowlark Prairies Outdoor Lab. For instance, they would like to continue to create enjoyable learning space for everyone by establishing an extended trail to the south, leveling current trails, new trail signage and St. Paul’s Lutheran School students and staff want to plant native grasses and wildflowers. 

Since you made it this far in our story, you might be thinking, “This is great! I wish I could help.” 

Great news, you can! 

On Friday, March 17th, there will be a St. Patricks Day Cheeseburger Hot Dish Luncheon from 11am – 1pm at the Eagles Club. This will be a free-will donation and the proceeds will be going to the Meadow Lark Trail improvement project. You also get your preference of take-out or delivery if you aren’t able to dine-in (507.375.3255). 

You can eat and give to this project at the same time. How easy is that? They can even bring it to you!

So the moral of the story is eat, support Meadow Lark Trail improvement and go birdwatching. Who knows, you may discover a bird too (or not). 

Oh yeah….The End.

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