Special events give us the opportunity to share the Nature Center with our community and have fun together! Funds raised advance the center's mission and directly support community centered programs, trail upkeep, and on-site animal care.
Keep an eye out for other events throughout the year! As opportunities arise, we may add after school activities, guest speakers, and workshops for small groups. All of our activities will be posted on Facebook and on the WICSD website.
**Helmer Nature Center will make every effort to accommodate visitors with varying levels of physical, cognitive, or learning abilities. Visitors/participants should call HNC two (2) weeks prior to the event or activity to discuss their needs with the HNC staff**
Click below for more information!
Meet Sherlock, our Eastern Screech Owl, and learn about the amazing adaptations that allow owls to hunt at night and how to identify our local species by sight or sound. Then join us on a moonlit walk through our woods where we will call to the owls and listen for owl activity.
Kick off the Fall with our Fall Harvest Celebration. Participate in pioneer activities such as candle and butter making, fall crafts, and sample tastes of the season. Activities and games for the kids are also available.
Make pinecone bird feeders and popcorn garlands to trim our outdoor space with treats for the wildlife around the Nature Center. Take a pinecone feeder to hang at home!
The Nature Center offers opportunities for snowshoeing during the winter months. Trails are open year round from dawn until dusk, allowing for independent hiking and snowshoeing. We offer snowshoe rentals on Saturdays in January and February when there is an adequate snow base (a minimum of 6-8 inches). Nature Center staff also host guided snowshoes sporadically throughout the season.
Local residents have been donating their Christmas trees to our Trees for Trails event since 1976. The Nature Center accepts trees from Christmas until mid-January, when Irondequoit Lawn & Landscape and High Falls Tree Service come to transform the trees into wood chips. Volunteers help unload trees and spread the chips, which will control erosion on our trails all year.
In this event, one of our biggest fundraisers of the year, adult teams of 6 people "purchase" tables to compete in a trivia competition like no other. Questions are sometimes wacky, sometimes challenging, and always entertaining! Prizes are awarded for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place teams. Raffles and door prizes add to the fun. Tables with the best theme are also recognized!
Come celebrate the Maple Sugaring Season with us! Walk our trails as we take you through the sugaring process. Help collect sap and stop at the evaporator to watch it cook into syrup. Enjoy a delicious meal including all you can eat pancakes and real, made on-site maple syrup. Our Pancake Brunch is a 30+ year Irondequoit tradition!
Our annual welcome to Spring, Bloomin' Baskets is fun for kids and adults alike. Drop in with a friend or family member and you'll leave with a basket of live flowers and a card suitable for gifting or keeping.