Northwest AEA

Loess Hills Prairie Seminar

Background Sketch
by Patricia D. Armstrong

May 30 - June 1, 2014

The Loess Hills Prairie Seminar is sponsored annually by Northwest Area Education Agency for educators, students, park and conservation persons, community leaders, and citizens. It is held at the Loess Hills Wildlife Management Area northeast of Onawa, Iowa (map) and in Onawa at the West Monona High School. The seminar is a living memorial to its founder, Carolyn Frerichs Benne, Western Hills Area Education Agency environmental educator. She started the seminar in 1977 as part of the Western Hills AEA's role in providing education and training for K-12 educators in the areas of conservation, environmental and science education. Three hundred people of all ages regularly attend the weekend event. The philosophy and rationale is grounded in the concept of the "total village" – the belief that schools are part of the larger community that must come together to share and learn about the natural world and how to protect it.


The 2014 Loess Hills Prairie Seminar
May 30 (evening) to June 1 (noon)
These Special Loess Hills

The Loess Hills Prairie Seminar is in its 38th year. It brings together dozens of facilitators and hundreds of participants of all ages, with diverse interests that relate to natural and cultural history, the Loess Hills, and prairie. Many field sessions teach about plants, insects, and birds, some explore nature writing or photography, several offer information about using native plants in the landscape, others feature Native American stories, prairie cemeteries, the nearby Missouri River, and there are many more topics explored.

There are many field sessions that include or are specifically for children and families. Evening sessions at West Monona High School are separate for children and adults. Many special programs are planned for the children, and special speakers for the adults. The public is invited to attend any session or program of interest.

There is no registration fee. Register only to order meals or to attend a few of the sessions requiring pre-registration.

Visit any of the numerous links on the left to learn all about the 2014 LHPS. For a summary of the 2014 seminar, perhaps you could begin with the 2014 LHPS Introduction. If you are an educator, go directly to the 2014 Letter for Educators..


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