Warblers and Waterfowl on the North Huron Birding Trail
Sep
25
8:00 AM08:00

Warblers and Waterfowl on the North Huron Birding Trail

Join Hessel School House, Little Traverse Conservancy, and MI Sea Grant Educator Elliot Nelson for a birding tour of some of the most spectacular sights along the North Huron Birding Trail. We will begin at the McDonald’s in St. Ignace and from there we will seek out waterfowl such as Redhead, Scaup, Red-Necked Grebe, and Scoters. Then we will drive east to Hessel and visit nature preserves and other sites where late migrant warblers and large flocks of Bonaparte’s gulls can be expected. We will finish at the Hessel School House with the option to go for lunch afterwards. No charge, but please pre-register by calling Hessel School House at 906.484.1333, go to the Class Registration page on this Web site, e-mail paul@hesselschoolhouse.net or e-mail hesselschoolhouse@gmail.com.

Photo Courtesy of William Purnis

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Incredible Carnivorous Plants of the Mackinac Straits Area
Sep
26
5:30 PM17:30

Incredible Carnivorous Plants of the Mackinac Straits Area

Northern Michigan’s wetlands are home to a fascinating group of plants that have adapted to “meat eating” as a source of nutrition. Pitcher plants, Sundews, Bladderworts, and Butterworts all have different and special strategies for capturing and digesting their prey of insects and small aquatic life. Prey provide a source of nitrogen to the plants, which often grow in nutritionally poor soils.
This program will explore the amazing adaptations of each group of carnivorous plants and how they can exist in often extreme and harsh environments.

Join naturalist Steve Baker on a journey into the worlds of local carnivorous plants. Mr. Baker will speak at Hessel School House from 5:30 p.m until 6:15 p.m. Following the presentation, he will take the class to a local coastal wetland to see carnivorous plants in their habitat.

To register, click on the link on the class registration page on this Web site, or call (906) 484-1333. If you’d prefer to e-mail, write to hesselschoolhouse@gmail.com or paul@hesselschoolhouse.net.

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Fall Nature Walk
Oct
5
10:00 AM10:00

Fall Nature Walk

In the Les Cheneaux Islands Area

Led by local naturalist Pat Wilson

Participants meet at Hessel School House

The walk is Free of Charge. To pre-register call (906) 484-1333, e-mail hesselschoolhouse@gmail.com, or visit the class registration page on this Web site

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Awesome Carved Hummingbirds Class
Oct
5
12:00 PM12:00

Awesome Carved Hummingbirds Class

Learn to create carved humming birds from cedar with artist Daryl Thurston at Avery Arts & Nature Learning Center - located at Hessel School House - Saturday, October 5, from 12 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Participants will leave with a completed carving. Students must be 16 years old or older. The process involves a sharp cutting knife; experience using a sharp carving knife is useful. To avoid injury, students are encouraged to wear filet cutting gloves.

Mr. Thurston learned the longstanding traditional art in the 80s from a Swedish artist at the Hiawatha Traditional Music Festival.   

The class is $35, due upon registering. All materials are included. Space is limited. To register, call (906) 484-1333 or go the Class Registration page on this Web site.

Photo courtesy of Daryl Thurston

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Nature's Wood Carvers: Understanding Bark Beetle and Wood Borer Galleries
Aug
16
3:30 PM15:30

Nature's Wood Carvers: Understanding Bark Beetle and Wood Borer Galleries

Similar to the work of Michigan’s native ash bark beetle, the image attached results from the activities of an ash bark beetle native to Europe. Photo by Gyorgy Csoka, Hungary Forest Research Institute, Bugwood.org., provided under the Creative Commons Non-Commercial 3.0 License.

Have you have ever removed the bark from a log or dead tree and seen dozens of zig-zag tunnels etched in the wood?  Did you wonder who made them and what stories they tell?  Insect expert Bob Haack will answer these questions during a presentation entitled “Nature’s Wood Carvers: Understanding Bark Beetle and Wood Borer Galleries Friday, August 16, at 3:30 p.m. The presentation, free of charge, will be at Hessel School House. Donations are encouraged. The program is an offering by Avery Arts & Nature Learning Center.

The two-part event will include a one-hour lecture and a slideshow covering the life cycles of bark-and-wood-infesting insects. If weather allows participants will have the option to join Mr. Haack for a second hour at a local nature preserve, location to be determined, where participants will examine the influence of nature’s wood carvers on fallen trees and branches.

Participants will have to opportunity to examine several bark and wood samples that contain some of the more common etchings found in northern Michigan, including those made by pine bark beetles and the emerald ash borer.

Mr. Haack served as an entomologist for the U.S. Forest Service in Michigan for more than 30 years. 

To register contact Avery Arts & Nature Learning Center Director Paul Gingras at (906) 484-1333, (906) 430-2166, or paul@hesselschoolhouse.net. Participants may also register by calling Hessel School House Administrative Director Kerri Smith at (906) 484-1333 or Hesselschoolhouse@gmail.com.

 

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Travel Writing Workshop with Beate Baum
Jul
23
to Jul 24

Travel Writing Workshop with Beate Baum

Author Beate Baum will hold an Avery Arts & Nature Learning Workshop on Travel Writing Tuesday, July 23 through Wednesday, July 24. Ms. Baum was born in Dortmund, Germany, and now resides in Dresden.  She holds a master’s degree in Comparative Literature and is an author and journalist. For over 20 years, she has worked as a freelance travel writer, focusing mainly on Great Britain, Ireland, and the USA. Baum’s features are published in magazines and newspapers all over Germany. One of her latest guide books, Liverpool, quickly became a standard among Beatles fans and has just entered its 4th edition.  She is also an acclaimed author of fiction; primarily crime novels.  Her U.S. debut was marked with the short story, The High School Reunion.

Tentative Schedule

Tuesday, July 23

10:30 a.m. - Introduction

10:45 a.m. - Famous Travel Writers / Travel Writing

11:30 a.m. - Basic Journalistic Skills / The Craft of Travel Writing / Discuss Examples of Articles

1:00 p.m. - Lunch

1:30 p.m. - Writing exercise – Describing a Place

2:15 p.m. - Read and Discuss Texts

3:45 p.m. - Excursion to Les Cheneaux Distillers

Wednesday, July 24

10:30 a.m. - Collaborative work – Collect Impressions of Excursion, and Decide What Goes into the Text (Quotes, Descriptions...)

11:15 a.m. - Collaborative exercise – Write a Feature

12:45 p.m. - Lunch

2:15 p.m. - Read and discuss texts

3:15 p.m. - Open Discussion

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Social Ballroom Dance Class with Bruce and Peggy Amrine
Jun
14
to Aug 2

Social Ballroom Dance Class with Bruce and Peggy Amrine

Fridays 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. $5 per student. Proceeds benefit Hessel School House.

This class will teach how to move around the dance floor in a smooth and graceful way. Participants will learn how to hear the beat, step to the music, lead and follow with a partner in a close dance frame, and travel around the dance floor with a variety of dance steps and patterns. No previous dance experience is necessary.

Peggy and Bruce Amrine have been summer residents in the Les Cheneaux Islands for more than 50 years and have been social dancing for 30 years. While not professional dance instructors, their experiences with both modern ballroom dance and historic vintage dance give them a unique perspective into teaching basic couple dance and how to have fun and look good on the dance floor.

This material will be presented in an easy, not-threatening way. There is an old saying in dance: If you can walk, you can one-step. The one-step was a very popular dance in the early 1900’s and gradually evolved into what we know today as contemporary ballroom dancing. Students will start by mastering the one-step and then move into the waltz and foxtrot. The class will be in a drop-in format that will allow for joining the group at any time. It will not be necessary to be involved for the entire summer.

This is presented as couple dancing so it is preferred, although not absolutely necessary, that students participate as couples. Students will need comfortable shoes, preferably with smooth leather soles. Flip-flops or boating shoes are not good choices. Otherwise, the dress code is ”Hey, we’re on vacation” so wear whatever you find comfortable.

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NUNO Felted Silk Scarf Class
May
18
10:30 AM10:30

NUNO Felted Silk Scarf Class

Instructor Kim Claire from Harbor Springs will help teach you to create your own Nuno Felted Silk Scarf, which is hand-dyed with a touch of merino silk. You may choose your own colors. No experience is needed.

Kim will be teaching classes throughout the summer in needle and wet felting at Pickle Point fiber arts studio.

  • This workshop is sponsored by Pickle Point

  • Plan on 4-5 hours, which includes lunch

  • Cost is $80. Includes supplies and equipment

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