Newsletter – February, 2017


Watch out!!!  Mount Closter is about to erupt again! 
This month’s after-school science program will focus on everyone’s favorite natural disaster – Volcanoes!
We will try to get outside each day, so please dress for the weather.
Kids will make model volcanoes and we will erupt our giant volcano simulator, Mt. Closter.

PK-K……Tuesdays, 7th, 14th and 28th
1st and 2nd…… Wednesdays, 8th, 15th and March 1st
3rd thru 5th………… Thursdays, 9th, 16th and March 2nd
Remember: we will skip the week of the Feb. 20th because of the winter break.
TIME: 3:45 to 5:00
Monthly Fee:  $40 for members and $50 for nonmembers

To register for classes: Please call Marc at (201) 750-2778 to reserve a place in class. Then, bring to the first class a check, (preferably not cash) for the proper amount, made out to the Closter Nature Center. For info about financial assistance scholarships for our programs, contact Marc at (201) 750-2778

*** Winter Break Program ***
Monday February 20th – Thursday February 23rd
Looking for something for the kids to do during the winter break?
Here is the answer – Bring them to the Nature Center!
Our break programs have been such a success,
we are going to do it again.
The topics will depend on the weather,
but they will definitely be fun and educational.

To help make these programs fit your schedule the classes will run for 4 days but kids can sign up for 1, 2, 3, or all 4 of the days.
We will try to spend time outside each day, so please dress for the weather.
1st and 2nd grade: 9:00 – 11:30am
3rd thru 6th grade: 1:00 – 3:30pm

Cost: $20 per day for members, $30 per day
To register call Marc at (201) 750-2778

Winter Wonderland Hike
Sunday, February 19th at 2:00pm
Come one, come all, layer up your warm clothes, and join us for an afternoon forest adventure. With no leaves on the trees, finding wildlife becomes much easier! You never know what you’ll notice around the next bend in the trail…

Naturalist’s Notes:
The muskrat is one of the many mammals that reside at the Closter Nature Center. These interesting rodents, like their cousin the beaver,
are aquatic and have adaptations that help them survive and thrive in the winter. The Nature Center’s ponds and streams are the perfect habitat for the muskrat, which has fur that stays dry and warm even while underwater, and webbed hind feet for locomotion. They get to be about two feet long, with their long scaly tails, and have blackish-brown glossy hair.
Although muskrats are mostly nocturnal, they can be seen year-round swimming in the water, leaping into the pond when alarmed, and munching vegetation at the pond’s edge. Muskrats make pond and streamside burrows that are about 6 inches in diameter, and can be as long as 50 feet!
A while back, out with some kids, we watched a muskrat at the edge of the pond carefully digging up a small clump of grass. Once his future meal was secured in his mouth, he darted to the pond and then quickly submerged. Since muskrats can hold their breath for as long as 15 minutes, a short swim to his underwater burrow was amazing to the kids and me, but just another moment in the life of a muskrat.
See you on the trails, Marc Gussen, Naturalist

Awesome Holiday Break Volunteers

Our great thanks to all of the volunteers who helped make the Holiday Break program great!
Wally, Derin, Jason, Marin, Sophie, Tanner and Anya: Thanks so much for your hard work.


The Board of Trustees of the Closter Nature Center is happy to announce that Yasemin Sarier has agreed to take on the additional role of Secretary for the Board. Yasemin will replace Jennifer Rothschild who has served tirelessly in this role and others over the past many years. Jennifer will remain as a Trustee on the Board. Thanks to both Yasemin and Jennifer for volunteering their time to help our local community!


February – Winter Wonderland Hike: 2/19 at 2 PM
Winter Break Program: 2/20 -2/23
March – Meet the Animals of the Closter Nature Center:
3/12 at 2 PM
April 2nd – Soup Supper, 5-7 PM
May – Plants of NJ, and Annual Meeting
June 3rd – Pond Celebration (June 10th rain date)

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