Schurmeier Teaching Forest

Jerry and Jon Schurmeier donated the original 52 acres of Schurmeier Teaching Forest to JDCF in 1994 in memory of their parents. With the help of the Northwest Illinois Forestry Association and a grant from the Illinois Council on Forestry Development, a teaching forest was created on the eleven westernmost acres of the donated properties. To our knowledge, this is the only teaching forest in Illinois.  A self-guided tour booklet is available at the kiosk and corresponds to signage along the trail.

This rugged, hillside property is entirely wooded. Although the site was generally logged many years ago, the deeper ravines include some awe-inspiring old growth timber. A picnic shelter surrounded by native prairie plants is available for family gatherings, and is the meeting point for our spring and fall forest walks.

Upcoming Events

The Prairie Enthusiasts 2017 Annual Conference

March 4

JDCF is co-hosting this annual, one-day conference with the Northwest Illinois Prairie Enthusiasts.  The theme will be Landscapes of the Future: Challenges & Opportunities. Two keynote speakers will be Jeff Walk of The Nature Conservancy, speaking on “Climate Change & Habitat Preservation & Restoration” and Bob Palmer of the Effigy Mounds National Monument, speaking on “Fertile Ground […] Read More

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Popcorn & Program: FIRE, the Science of Prairie Restoration Burns

March 18 @ 6:30 pm - 9:00 pm

Learn about the important role fire plays in the prairie ecosystem from our own Director of Land Stewardship, Ryan Getz. This “Popcorn & Program” is at the Galena Territory Association on Saturday, March 18 at 6:30 PM with the program beginning at 7:00 PM. As a follow up, all are welcome to come out in April […] Read More

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JDCF Annual Meeting

April 1 @ 4:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Join fellow JDCF members and our guest speaker, botanical artist, George Olson, at our annual meeting.  Mr. Olson will have some of his work on site.  We will also be honoring John & Barbara Rutherford as recipients of the 2017 Nancy Hamill Winter Conservation Leadership Award.

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Calling All Volunteers – River Clean Up

April 22 @ 8:00 am - 3:30 pm

The annual Mississippi River Clean Up will take place from 8 am until 3:30 pm at Gear’s Ferry Landing south of Galena. Individuals and families with older children are welcome.   This event is generously sponsored by Chestnut Mountain Resort. Boats and shovels are needed. Anyone who provides a boat for the day will be reimbursed […] Read More

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