Connecticut Audbon Society
Center at Fairfield

Center at Fairfield

Programs and Events at the Center at Fairfield

Because of concerns about Covid-19, the Center at Fairfield is running outdoor programming only and asking participants of those programs to practice social distancing and wear masks; see below for our current programs. The Center at Fairfield building is closed and all indoor programs are cancelled until further notice. The Nature Store has reopened with a modified schedule; click HERE for details.

 

Ongoing Programs:

  • NEW! Distance Learning: Science in Nature: Bring the excitement and learning of our Science in Nature programs to your classroom with these live, virtual programs. Click here for program brochure.
  • NEW! Field Trips for Home Learning Groups: Enrich your home learning group by taking a field trip to the Center at Fairfield for hands-on, outdoor, environmental programs. Click here for program brochure. 
  • Birds of Prey, Meet the Animals and Backyard Birding Programs: Our animal-focused, remote-learning programs are ideal for individuals, libraries, scout troops, senior centers and more. Click here for details.
  • Birthday Parties: Celebrate your child’s birthday with a nature-based party at our Center. Currently, all parties are held outdoors. Click here for details.
  • Scouting Programs: Customized science- and nature-related programs are available on- or off-site. Click here for details.
  • Sponsor An Ambassador Bird: A rewarding way to ensure the welfare of a bird of prey that cannot survive on its own. Click here for details.

 

Summer Camp 2021

Summer Camp will be held June 14 – August 20.
Click HERE for complete details, including registration information.

To comply with COVID-19 guidelines, group sizes will be smaller this year, so register early!

  • Camp programs will follow the policies and guidance specific to COVID-19 provided by the Connecticut Office of Early Childhood Education. All campers will be required to wear a mask and practice social distancing.
  • Small group, outdoor programming where kids will safely explore, discover and learn about the natural world.
  • Staffed by knowledgeable teacher-naturalists and counselors experienced with working with children.

Return to the outdoors! Campers from ages 4 to 11 will explore and thrive in a natural environment through an excellent balance of fun and engaging activities. To download our summer camp brochure, click here.

 

Spring Bird Seed Sale: 20% Off

Saturday, April 17
10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
(Pre-orders due Wednesday, April 7)

The Center at Fairfield’s Nature Store will be offering a 20% discount on premium bird seed on Saturday, April 17. Knowledgeable staff are always on hand to help you select the right seed for your backyard and answer general bird feeding questions. The Nature Store also carries a wide selection of nature-themed bird books, binoculars, field guides and more.

To ensure that adequate supplies are available, pre-ordering is strongly recommended. Click here for a pre-order form (forms due Wednesday, April 7).

On sale day, Saturday, April 17, pre-order customers should drive straight to seed pick-up area for curbside loading; sale day shoppers can either pay remotely and pick up curbside, or shop one at a time in the store

 

After-School Nature Explorers – SOLD OUT

Thursdays: April 8, 22
3:30 – 5 p.m.

Our popular series for kids, ages 6 to 8, is back! When the school day is over, students love leaving their screens to become a nature explorer at Connecticut Audubon’s Center at Fairfield.

Join our teacher/naturalist for this fun, socially distanced outdoor class to look for signs of animals. We’ll hike the Sanctuary trails to investigate wildlife up close and do hands-on experiments.

Free for Fairfield residents. Non-residents/CAS Members: $20 per child; Non-residents/CAS Non-members $25 per child. Registration for all dates have filled.

Once registered, participants will need to complete a waiver and will be required to practice social distancing and wear masks. This program is at the Center at Fairfield, 2325 Burr Street, Fairfield, CT.

 

Spring Peeper Prowl – SOLD OUT

Photo by Twan Leenders

Friday, April 9
7 – 9 p.m.

Come and listen with us for spring peepers in our marsh and ponds. We will look for secretive animals like spotted salamanders and spring peepers.

Members $10/per person, Non-members $15/per person. Pre-registration required. Note: This program is sold out.

Appropriate for ages 6 and up. No strollers. Boots, flashlights and warm clothes, please. Children must be with an adult. Once registered, participants will need to complete a waiver and will be required to practice social distancing and wear masks. This program is held at the Center at Fairfield, 2325 Burr Street, Fairfield, CT.

 

Spring Break Camp

Monday-Friday, April 12 – 16
9:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Spots are filling up – Register today!

Join us to welcome back the animals and plants that have been hiding all winter…see what they’ve been up to! Together with our teacher naturalists, campers will investigate the Larsen Sanctuary to look for evidence of spring’s arrival. This outdoor program also includes games, live animals, crafts, log rolling and more.

Members $50 per day; Non-members $60 per day. Pre-registration required.

Kindergarten to Grade 2:Grades 3-5 :
Monday, April 12: Register here.Monday, April 12: Register here.
Tuesday, April 13: SOLD OUTTuesday, April 13: Register here.
Wednesday, April 14: Register here.Wednesday, April 14: Register here.
Thursday, April 15: SOLD OUTThursday, April 15: Register here.
Friday, April 16: Register here.Friday, April 16: Register here.

 

Please dress for the weather, bring a change of clothes, and a peanut-free lunch and snack. Once registered, participants will need to complete a waiver and will be required to practice social distancing and wear masks. This is an outdoor program, however, if inclement weather develops, program may be moved indoors. This is held at the Center at Fairfield, 2325 Burr Street, Fairfield, CT 06824.

 

Larsen Trails Hiking Challenge

Wednesdays: April 14, 28; May 5
10:30 a.m. – Noon*
*The May 5 hike will end at 12:30 p.m.

Ready to add some “spring” in your step? With the increasing chorus of birdsong and peepers welcoming the season, this also is an ideal time to get out and moving with some fresh air and exercise.

The hikes, led by Connecticut Audubon volunteer Burt Boardman, will primarily be on the main trails, however, footing on some sections may be somewhat challenging and a bit soggy from spring rains. Expect a moderate to fast pace, so wear comfortable shoes and bring water.

Members $10, Non-members $15. Pre-registration is required: 
April 14 (Chibioucas Trail/Sturges Pond): Register here.
April 28 (Deer Meadow/Azalea Trail): Register here.
May 5 (Finale – Full Sanctuary Perimeter): Register here.

The rain date will be the Thursday after the originally scheduled date. Once registered, participants will need to complete a waiver and will be required to practice social distancing and wear masks. This program is held at the Center at Fairfield, 2325 Burr Street, Fairfield, CT.

 

Nature Discovery Preschool Pod – SOLD OUT

Photo by Cameron Swallen

Mondays and Wednesdays
April 19 through May 26
9:30 – 11:30 a.m.

Curious young minds will have fun learning about nature during this six-week, outdoor program for toddlers, ages 3 to 4. Each Monday and Wednesday, little ones will learn about the natural world through outdoor explorations, hands-on science projects, animal encounters, arts and crafts.

Program fee: $540. This program is sold out.

The program will be held entirely outdoors, so please dress accordingly (indoor bathrooms are available). In case of inclement weather, efforts will be made to reschedule. Once registered, participants will need to complete a waiver. Each child is to wear a mask for the safety of children and staff. This program is held at the Center at Fairfield, 2325 Burr Street, Fairfield, CT.

 

Nature Nursery

Photo by Blair Vigneron

Tuesdays: April 20, 27, May 4, May 11
10 – 10:45 a.m.

What do animals do in the spring? How do they prepare for the warmer temperatures? Each week we will discover the answers to these questions and more in this engaging, outdoor program. Activities include stories, crafts, games, experiments, live animal visitors and explorations.

Click here to sign up for the series! Per child: Members $80, Non-members $100.

Single program fee (per child): Members $20, Non-members $25. Pre-registration required.
April 20: Register here.
April 27: Register here.
May 4: Register here.
May 11: Register here.

For children ages 2-3 accompanied by an actively participating adult. Once registered, participants will need to complete a waiver and will be required to practice social distancing and wear masks. Please wear appropriate indoor/outdoor attire and footwear. The session will be rescheduled in case of rain. This is an outdoor program, however, if inclement weather develops during the program, it will be moved indoors. This is held at the Center at Fairfield, 2325 Burr Street, Fairfield, CT 06824.

 

Sanctuary Nature Walk to Deer Meadow

Photo by Miley Bull

In the Sanctuaries …

Tuesday,  April 20
10 a.m. to Noon 
Center at Fairfield, 2325 Burr Street, Fairfield, CT

Botanist and naturalist Jim Cortina, along with Connecticut Audubon volunteer Burt Boardman, will lead a nature walk for adults focused on learning about plants and animals in the Larsen Sanctuary.

The destination of this guided walk is Deer Meadow. Along the way, there will be stops to examine the springtime signs and emergence of a great variety of wildlife. 

Members $10, Non-members $15. Pre-registration required. To register, click here.

This will be a two-hour hike, with a possibility of wet conditions on the trails, so please wear waterproof shoes, bring water and binoculars.

The rain date is Wednesday, April 21. Once registered, participants will need to complete a waiver and be required to practice social distancing and wear masks. This program will be held at the Center at Fairfield, 2325 Burr Street, Fairfield, CT.

 

Saving Nature: The Golden Ages of the Conservation Movement

Mabel Osgood Wright, founder of the Connecticut Audubon Society.

Wednesday, April 28
Noon
Zoom Presentation

The United States has a long and rich history of conserving nature. This luncheon talk will be a historical trip down memory lane of the four distinct “Golden Ages of the Conservation Movement” in America. We will look at the reasons why Americans decided to save nature and show the symbols of conservation.

The iconography includes photos of hats adorned with egret feathers and women who launched the Audubon movement, the Dustbowl photographs of Dorothea Lange, the Apollo 8 Earthrise photo and the photos of natural disasters related to climate change. Each period had contributing factors that aroused public action and forced political change.

David Govatski

Click here to register and for Zoom link. While we are offering this program for free, please consider a suggested donation of $10.

About our presenter: David Govatski is a forest historian and author of Forests for the People: The Story of the Eastern National Forests. He has written numerous magazine articles on the conservation movement. David retired after a 33-year career with the U.S. Forest Service and currently works as a naturalist. He and his wife live in the White Mountains of New Hampshire.

 

May Plant Identification Walk

Photo: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Tuesday, May 11
10:30 a.m. – Noon

With its 155 acres and variety of habitats, the Larsen Wildlife Sanctuary is a treasure-trove of springtime growth. Join botanist Jim Cortina to explore and identify spring wildflowers and other plants in Sanctuary’s fields, woods and marshy areas. The delicate blossoms of wild geraniums, the fascinating growth habit of jack-in-the-pulpits and the dramatic reds of trilliums may be some of the marvels encountered along the way.

Members $10, Non-members $12. Pre-registration is required. Click here to register.

Please bring binoculars to view any bird visitors that may appear. Once registered, participants will need to complete a waiver and will be required to practice social distancing and wear masks. This program is held at the Center at Fairfield, 2325 Burr Street, Fairfield, CT.

 

Marvelous Metamorphoses!

Saturday, May 22
10:30 a.m. – Noon

The acclaimed Sova Dance and Puppet Theater will present beautiful and bizarre transformations in nature during a live, puppet workshop and performance on the Center’s back lawn.

Through original music, dance and the art of puppetry, “Marvelous Metamorphoses!” celebrates and brings to life the annual life cycles of nature — from caterpillars to butterflies, polliwogs to frogs and more! This all-ages, family program begins with a puppet workshop at 10:30 a.m., followed by the performance at 11 a.m.

Members $10/per person, Non-members $15/per person. Pre-registration required. To register, click here.

Sova Theater is a visual performing arts company serving schools, arts venues and community organizations across the U.S. and abroad. “Sova” (which means “owl” in Slovak) was founded by Artistic Director Adelka Polak, a dancer, puppeteer, mask-performer and movement director. Through her work with organizations like the Jim Henson Foundation, Polak also offers professional development workshops for teachers, parents and teaching artists in the art of puppetry.

Once registered, participants will need to complete a waiver and will be required to practice social distancing and wear masks. This program is held at the Center at Fairfield, 2325 Burr Street, Fairfield, CT.

 

Birds of Prey, Meet the Animals and Backyard Birding Programs

Enrich yourself, or the offerings of your group or organization, with our learning programs. Ideal for individuals, libraries, scout troops, senior centers, Parks and Recreation departments and more, they can also be tailored to meet your specific needs. Programs can be in person or virtual (via Zoom). Click here for brochure.

Birds of Prey – Encounter with one or more raptors on a bird handler’s glove. You’ll learn about the natural history of these magnificent birds, while discovering their unique physical and behavioral adaptations. We’ll discuss different raptor species and their amazing behavioral and predatory adaptations, as well as their conservation status and critical role in the environment.
Program fee: $300. Length: 60 minutes.

Meet the Animals – Unlock the basics behind how scientists classify animals into groups. We’ll focus on five basic animal groups: invertebrates, mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians. By comparing representative animals and their features, discover how the animals are related, what special traits they have, and better understand why they are classified the way they are. The program also includes live animals and mounted species.
Program fee: $165. Length: 60 minutes.

Backyard Birding – Learn how to identify backyard birds by sight and sound, who is at the feeder during each season and what their feeding habits are. Also covered will be bird characteristics, ways to entice birds to your feeder, what feeders and seed to use, and where to place feeders for bird safety and best viewing. This program includes a PowerPoint presentation, and there will be samples of bird feeders and seed that can be used in your backyard to attract birds.
Program fee: $165. Length: 60 minutes.

To schedule, please email our program manager at tkevalis@ctaudubon.org.

 

Sponsor an Ambassador Bird

Sponsoring an Ambassador Bird at the Center at Fairfield is a rewarding way to ensure the welfare of a bird of prey that cannot survive on its own. It’s a unique present for someone special or as a treat for yourself!

Your sponsorship will support the daily upkeep of your chosen bird, and the considerable amount of scrumptious raptor feed it eats — and yes — that does mean dead mice and rats!

You can also honor your favorite person, organization, teacher, or class with the gift of an owl, falcon or hawk sponsorship. It’s the perfect way to symbolically introduce them to the hunters of the sky! Click here for sponsorship information.

 

Scouting Programs

The Center at Fairfield provides programs that meet the needs of scouts and their leaders. Our teacher-naturalists will lead scouts through hands-on, science-based programs during which they will discover unique habitats and wildlife while working towards badge requirements. Programs may be scheduled for weekdays and weekends (based on availability).

For Girl Scout programs, click here. For Boy Scout programs, click here.

We also offer two badge days a year. Please check this page for periodic badge workshops.

 

Birthday Parties

birthday cake

Celebrate your child’s birthday with The Connecticut Audubon Society! We provide a fun-filled, 45-minute nature-based program of your choice for your child and up to 15 guests. Program offerings include: Naturalist Adventures, Slither & Slime, Creature Feature, Winged Wonder and more!

Parties are available on Saturdays from 10:30 a.m. – noon or noon to 1:30 p.m. Weekday parties available on a limited basis by request. 

Click here to view the brochure. Currently, all parties are held outside. For more information call 203-259-6305 ext. 109.

 

 

 

Connecticut Audubon’s Dr. Science: Using Binoculars for Birding

Ever wonder how you could use your binoculars to get an “eagle-eye” view of some of your favorite birds? Join Connecticut Audubon’s Dr. Science as she shares (and demonstrates) some dos and don’ts, including how you can listen, spot and focus in on your next super-incredible nature experience.

See below for our previous Dr. Science adventures:
Episode 1: Skunk Cabbage, click here.
Episode 2: Estuaries, click here.
Episode 3: Beach Grass, click here.
Episode 4: Rockweed, click here.
Episode 5: Mud Snails, click here.
Episode 6: Bivalves, click here.
Episode 7: The Great Blue Heron, click here.
Episode 8: Life Under a Log, click here.
Episode 9: The Wood Frog Story, click here.
Episode 10: Owl Pellets, click here.
Episode 11: Dandelions, click here.
Episode 12: Snakes, click here.

 

 

 

 

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