Update May 27, 2020

Sioux County Conservation will be opening all campground shower houses/restrooms starting today. All campgrounds will be open. Cleaning schedule will be based on capacity of campgrounds.

Cabins are available for rent. Deep cleaning will be done in between each rental. We will be blocking off rental dates between rentals to allow for proper cleaning of facility.

Enclosed shelters and lodges are available for reservations at 50% capacity.

June 1 all playground equipment will be reopened for use at own risk.

Prairie Woods Nature Center remains closed to the public at this time.

We encourage you to get out and enjoy the parks and wildlife areas in Sioux County. We do encourage you to practice social distancing during this time as directed by the state’s Public Health Department.

May 18, 2020 Memorial Day Weekend Update

As of today May 18, 2020 ALL Sioux County Conservation Board campgrounds are open for the upcoming Memorial Holiday weekend to those that are self-contained. Self-contained is defined as a tent or pop-up camper with a portable toilet or an RV with a functioning, self-contained bathroom. We have a lot of sites to choose from yet!

Due to Covid- 19 cases still going up in Sioux County we have decided to keep the restroom facilities closed until May 27, 2020. This is for the safety of our staff and for the public’s safety.

Thank you for your understanding.

Prairie Woods Nature Center will remain closed at this time.

Have a great Memorial Day Weekend!

Governor’s New Proclamation Opens Campgrounds May 8, 2020

The Sioux County Conservation Board will open Sioux County campgrounds at 8:00 am on Friday, May 8 to campers with self-contained restrooms only. Self-contained is defined as a tent or pop-up camper with a portable toilet or an RV with a functioning, self-contained bathroom. Walk-in campers may begin registering at 8 am.

  • Friday, May 8- Sunday May 10: walk-in only, first come, first served basis
  • Monday, May 11: reservations will be available for a portion of sites online at www.mycountyparks.com- remainder of sites will continue to be walk-in only, first come, first served basis

While parks have seen a great influx of visitors; it is expected to see the same at the campgrounds. Parks staff will be closely monitoring these areas to avoid gatherings of groups larger than 10. Staff presence throughout the park and campgrounds will remind and educated visitors to continue physical distancing while enjoying some of Iowa’s most beautiful public places. Campers should also abide by the following guidelines:

  • Campfires at the individual campsites will be limited to campers occupying that campsite
  • Groups smaller than 10
  • All modern restrooms and shower buildings, including water fountains, remain closed
  • Communal picnic tables and grills are open for use at your own risk
  • Playgrounds, day use rental lodges and shelter houses will remain closed
  • Cabins, yurts and shelter houses will remain closed
  • Prairie Woods Nature Center will remain closed
  • Beaches will be open, but monitored closely- no swimming unless swim buoys are out at our beaches
  • Some parts of the parks may be closed due to construction or maintenance issues
    • Bruce Schomaker Recreation Area will remain closed until May 15
    •  Alton Roadside Park will remain closed until May 15

COVID Closure Update 4-28-2020

Sioux County Conservation Board campgrounds, shelters, cabins, Prairie Woods Nature Center and all park playground equipment continue to be closed through May 15, 2020 as directed by Governor Kim Reynolds.

Please use our public area for your well-being. You are welcome to hike, bird watch, nature studies, fish and hunt (according to state/local laws).

Please do those things while practicing physical distancing and remember group size is limited to 10 and under.

Note that all restroom facilities remain closed at this time.

The following public programs are canceled:
May 2 Writing Nature Using Words to Engage the Natural World
May 19 Senior Environmental Learning and Fellowship (SELF)

We understand this update may cause frustration. This time will pass, but in the interim please follow this guidance to help slow the spread of Covid-19.

Please stay safe.

Closure Update 4-6-2020

Sioux County Conservation Board campgrounds, shelters, cabins, Prairie Woods Nature Center and all park playground equipment are closed as directed by Governor Kim Reynolds.

Please use our public area for your well-being. You may hike, bird watch, nature studies, fish and hunt (according to state/local laws).

Please do those things while practicing physical distancing.

Please do not use park playgrounds, picnic shelters, tables, pit toilet or park benches. Violators will be addressed.

The following public programs are cancelled:
April 17 Celebrate Earth Day with Teddy Roosevelt
April 21 Senior Environmental Learning and Fellowship (SELF)

We understand this update may cause frustration. This time will pass, but in the interim please follow this guidance to help slow the spread of Covid-19.

Please stay safe.

Closures of Prairie Woods Nature Center and Rental Facilities

The Sioux County Conservation Board, in conjunction with County Officials, and the Sioux County Board of Supervisors effective Tuesday, March 17, 2020 until further notice will close the Prairie Woods Nature Center to public visits for the following three weeks or as determined necessary.

We will not be allowing any further rentals of cabins or shelter facilities until after April 27, 2020. The rentals that have been made at this time will be allowed unless further restrictions are required.

All restroom facilities at park campgrounds will remain closed at this time until mid-April.

You are welcome to come out and use the campgrounds but must be self-contained. You are also welcome to come out and use the hiking trails but are encouraged to not have large gatherings located at any of our facilities.

The following programs will be cancelled due to closures:
March 17, 2020 SELF Program
April 4, 2020 Intro to Beekeeping

We will continue to monitor this situation and will adjust cancellations and closures as necessary.

March 17, 2020 SELF Program Cancelled

We will not be hosting this month’s SELF program on March 17 due to local CDC/IDPH recommendations on limiting gatherings, special concern for those we are inviting for this program.

We will be hosting our next SELF Program as scheduled on April 21, 2020; topic for April will be on Wildflowers.

Starting in April we will be offering this program at two different times 9:30 am and 2 pm. Mark your calendar and plan on joining us for this fun program.

2020 Spring/Summer Newsletter

Check out our spring/summer 2020 newsletter by clicking here.

Newsletter highlights:

Updates on Prairie Woods Nature Center

2020 Seasonal Summer Employment Applications being Taken. Click here for application.

Updates on your local parks.

Upcoming programming: SELF, Spring/Summer programming, Hunter Safety Education Course

Summer Camp registration starts April 1, 2020 Click here for listing of summer camps.

Click here for full newsletter.

2020 Seasonal Summer Positions

Sioux County Conservation Board is looking to hire seasonal help at Oak Grove, Big Sioux Recreation Area and Sandy Hollow Recreation Area. Whether you are a college student looking for a summer job, high school student exploring career options or a retired adult looking for something to keep you busy during the summer months we have positions available. If you enjoy interacting with people and handing out information the Registration Booth Attendant or Front Desk Receptionist position is perfect for you. Hours vary including weekends, evenings, holiday and weekdays.

If you are one that enjoys mowing, working with your hands, cleaning and other projects the Seasonal Park Technician position is for you. Hours are Monday to Friday, with some variances as needed.

All applicants must have an interest in the outdoors and working with people of all ages, be able to effectively communicate orally and in writing, apply knowledge and common sense to solve problems and/or achieve work objectives. Must possess a current valid driver’s license, be 16 years of age or older and undergo background checks in reference to driving record, criminal history and child abuse registry. Prefer education or training in environmental education, natural resources, wildlife biology, biology/ecology or related field is preferred, but not required. Interest in the outdoors and working with people of all ages is a must for all positions.

Click here for application.

See below for further information on positions and starting wages. Deadline for application is March 27, 2020.

Front Desk Receptionist
This position is located at the Prairie Woods Nature Center at Oak Grove Park prefer someone that is 17 years of age or older for position. Responsibilities include watching the exhibit hall of the nature center, greeting guests, answering questions, selling gift shop items, cleaning of facility and other tasks as assigned. Hours include weekdays, evenings, summer holidays and weekends.

Naturalist Internship
As a summer Naturalist Intern you will use your talents and skills to impact public understanding and attitudes about nature and the environment. Assist naturalist with planning and implementing nature interpretations, outdoor recreation and environmental education programs and media for a wide range of audiences. Preferred education or training in environmental education, natural resources, wildlife biology, biology/ecology or related field is preferred, but not required. Please print application and return with resume, cover letter and references to Sunday Ford at the address below.

Registration Booth Attendants
The registration booth attendant will operate at either the Big Sioux Recreation Area, near Hawarden, IA and/or Sandy Hollow Recreation Area, near Sioux Center, IA. Primary responsibilities include: registering vehicles upon entering park, selling firewood and snacks, renting canoes/kayaks, cleaning of assigned areas and other tasks as assigned. Position to include: weekday, weekend, evening and holiday hours.

Seasonal Park Technician
Seasonal park technicians will assist the full-time Park Ranger/Maintenance Technicians in day to day operations of the parks and facilities. Duties include but not limited to: mowing, cleaning restrooms and facilities, cutting firewood, staining, running farm equipment, register park users, maintain records and much more. Applicants interested in the season park technician position should have the ability to engage in physical work, previous experience with maintenance, landscaping and farm equipment helpful but not required.

Starting Wages for all positions: $10.25/hour dependent on experience

All applications and/or resumes will be open to public inspection unless request in writing to be kept confidential. Discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, or disability is prohibited. Sioux County is an equal opportunity employer.

Deadline for applications is March 27, 2020.

Please click the link below to print off an application and return to:
Sioux County Conservation Board
4051 Cherry Ave
Hawarden, IA 51023
Click here for application.

Summer Naturalist Internship

Position Available:

Full Time Seasonal

Summer Naturalist Internship

 

JOB DESCRIPTION

As a Summer Naturalist Intern, you use your talent and skills to impact public understanding and attitudes about nature and the environment! Assist professional Naturalists with planning and implementing nature interpretation, outdoor recreation and environmental education programs and media for a wide range of audiences. All applications for the education department must be able to effectively communicate, apply knowledge and common sense to solve problems and/or achieve work objectives. Must possess a current valid driver’s license, and undergo background checks in reference to driving record, criminal history and child abuse registry. Preferred education or training in environmental education, natural resources, wildlife biology, biology/ecology or related field is preferred, but not required.

DUTIES INCLUDE

            Plan and present environmental education programs

            Set up, take down of program material and classrooms

            Sales/handle funds or balance the register at the gift shop

            Cleaning (maintain & keep work are organized) Additional cleaning may be assigned

            Assist with media

            Animal care as needed

            Others as assigned by Environmental Education Coordinator

REQUIRED EDUCATION AND SKILLS

            Must be 16 years of age and older

            Must be punctual and responsible

            Ability to be able to communicate well with others

            Ability to work with a broad range of people with different abilities and personalities

            Computer knowledge and other information technology knowledge

            Knowledge of natural resources, outdoor recreation, and local wildlife areas are a plus

COMPENSATION AND WORK DATES

            $10.25/HOUR

Typically M-F, 8am-4:30, occasional Saturday or evening hours

Approx start date mid-May through early August

APPLICATION INFORMATION

            Send resume, cover letter, and a list of references with knowledge of your skills and abilities to sundayf@siouxcounty.org

All applications and/or resumes will be open to public inspection unless requested in writing to be kept confidential. Discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, or disability is prohibited. Sioux County is an equal opportunity employer.

Employment Opportunity

 

Position Available:

Part-time Seasonal Front Desk Positions

(Possibility of Becoming Year-Round)

Prairie Woods Nature Center

JOB DESCRIPTION

   The Front Desk Positions will be the first person that visitors interact with in the Nature Center. This person must be able to provide a friendly welcoming experience while ensuring that all patrons are acting in a safe and appropriate manner.  The person will also be in sure the building is clean and maintained during and at the end of their shift.

   The person must be able to arm the security system at the end of the day. All Sioux County Conservation Board employees are subject to all Sioux County personnel policies and procedures.

DUTIES INCLUDE

            Assist in welcoming and answering questions at the front desk

            Recording visitor numbers

            Sales/handle funds or balance the register at the gift shop

            Cleaning (maintain & keep work are organized) Additional cleaning may be assigned

            Opening and closing routine of building

            Animal care as needed

            Others as assigned by Director or other staff

REQUIRED EDUCATION AND SKILLS

            Must be 17 years of age and older

            Must be punctual and responsible

            Ability to be able to communicate well with others

            Ability to work with a broad range of people with different abilities and personalities

            Computer knowledge and other information technology knowledge are helpful

            Knowledge of natural resources, outdoor recreation, and local wildlife areas are a plus

COMPENSATION AND WORK DATES

            $10.25/HOUR

Weekday, Thursday evening, and Weekend shifts available

Seasonal part-time hours available

Approx start date April 1, 2020-Oct 1, 2020

APPLICATION INFORMATION

            Send letter of application and resume, stating reasons for interest in position and a list of references with knowledge of your skills and abilities to robk@siouxcounty.org

Applications may be found at https://siouxcountyconservation.weebly.com/uploads/9/3/2/8/9328649/application_for_employment.pdf

 

All applications and/or resumes will be open to public inspection unless requested in writing to be kept confidential. Discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, or disability is prohibited. Sioux County is an equal opportunity employer.

Weather Cancellations: 1/17/2020

Due to blizzard conditions the Ice Fishing Clinic for Saturday January 18, 2020 has been cancelled.

The Prairie Woods Nature Center will also remain closed Saturday January 18, 2020. Our doors will be open again on Tuesday January 21, 2020 starting at 9 am.

2019/2020 Winter Newsletter

Check out our winter newsletter by clicking here.

Newsletter highlights:

Opening day for Prairie Woods Nature Center Announced

2020 Seasonal Campsite Applications being taken. Click here for application.

Prairie Woods Nature Center Volunteers. Click here for volunteer application.

Upcoming programming: SELF, Owl Program, Ice Fishing Clinic, Backyard Bird

Updates on your local parks.

Vehicle pass ​are up for renewal.

Click here for full newsletter.

2020 Seasonal Sites

Click here for Seasonal Campsite Application

Are you interested in one of our seasonal sites for the 2020 camping season? We offer select campsites at the Big Sioux Recreation Area, Oak Grove Park and Sandy Hollow Recreation Area as seasonal sites. This is the perfect opportunity for those that enjoy camping at you local county parks week after week by allowing you to move your camper on to select site starting April 15 and leaving it there until October 15 (October 8, for Oak Grove) weather dependent.

Sandy Hollow Recreation Area and Big Sioux Recreation Area seasonal site will have concrete pads, electric (20, 30 and/or 50 amp), water and sewer hook ups. Sites will be available from April 15 until October 15, weather dependent.

Oak Grove Park’s seasonal sites will be available April 15 to October 8, weather dependent. Sites have concrete pads and are electric (20, 30, and/or 50 amp). There is a water hydrant nearby to fill from, and sewer dump station located in the campground for use, however are not located at each site.

You are welcome to take your camper to other locations during the summer; it will remain your site throughout the summer months. Your site will have a picnic table, fire ring and room to park one vehicle. Additional parking is located in visitor parking in the campground.

To acquire one of these sites you must fill out a Permanent/Seasonal camp site application by clicking here or pick one up at the Sioux County Conservation Administration Office during regular business hours. Return application with $50 deposit by December 31, 2019. We will draw for sites at our regular board meeting on February 5, 2020 at approximately 6:30 pm. If you are drawn at this time your application deposit will be applied to your site as first payment. You will be required to put down a $500 payment by March 15, 2020. If not received by this date you will forfeit your site and $50 application deposit. The remainder of your balance for the site, $1,450 for Big Sioux Recreation Area and Sandy Hollow Recreation Area or $1,306 for Oak Grove will be due by April 15, 2020. Failure to make your payment by this date will result in forfeiting your site and $550 deposit.

Click here for Seasonal Campsite Application.

Campgrounds starting to open for 2019 Camping Season

Despite the recent flooding and snow storm we do have campground ready to go for those that have the itch and have their campers ready for the warmer weather. The bath houses at these location are also open for the season.

The following campgrounds are open for the 2019 Camping Season:

Big Sioux Recreation Area:

Meadowlark Campground

Oak Grove Park:

Turkey Ridge Campground

Sandy Hollow Recreation Campground

The following campgrounds and areas remain closed at this time:

Big Sioux Recreation Area

Eagle View Campground

Roadway into the park, swimming beach area, boat ramp and back shelter areas.

Bruce Schomaker Recreation Area (scheduled to open May 15, 2019)

Oak Grove Park

Deer Run Campground (scheduled to open on Friday April 26, 2019)

Bottom picnic area

Boat Ramp

Watch our website for additional openings.

Big Sioux Recreation Area Volunteer Flood Clean Up Day

As many locals are aware, the Big Sioux Rec Area took another hit by the March flood. We were still recovering from the three floods of 2018 when this flood hit us from the east. Camping season is just around the corner and the park needs a lot of caring hands to remove the rubbish hiding her beauty. This volunteer event will put us that much farther ahead and help us get ready for the main visitor season.

Clean up day will be April 20, 2019 we will start around 1:00 pm, but come when you can! The event will last as long as the latest person wants to stay! You must check in at the Maintenance Building to receive instructions.

Projects will include: picking up litter the flood brought in, spreading new mulch in the playground to replace what was washed out, kayaking/canoeing all waters in order to access the litter along the shorelines, picking up logs/sticks and putting them in piles, etc. You will find lots of interesting things! So take pictures while you are here!

Want to help, but maybe are not up for all the walking? We could use a few people at the central check-in location to help sort recyclables and non-recyclables!

What to bring: work gloves, sturdy shoes and a smiling face!

We will provide reusable trash bags, pitchforks, rakes, and shovels.

This is a kid friendly volunteer event!

**Enter the park using the South entrance. Sign in at the Maintenance Shed upon entering the park for instructions.**

Sandy Hollow Rec. Area Reopens- Big Sioux Rec. Area Remains Closed

We are happy to announce the Sandy Hollow Recreation Area is open to the public again after flooding.

The Indoor Archery/BB Gun Ranges remain closed due to flooding of facilities. There will be no more open range nights for the season, thank you to those that came out and utilized the ranges the past couple of months.

Reminder to renew your annual vehicle passes upon entering the park if you have not done so for the new year.

Big Sioux Recreation Area remains closed to all public traffic due to flooding and roadway damages.

Watch our website for additional updates.

Sandy Hollow Recreation Area Closed 3-13-2019

Sandy Hollow Recreation Area is closed to all traffic due to flash flooding of entrance road ways. Due to rain fall, snow melt and high water tables.

Indoor Archery and BB Gun Ranges will also be closed due to flooding of facilities for our Thursday March 14, 2019 date.

Please avoid all traffic into this park.

Watch our website for updates on parks reopening.

Big Sioux Recreation Area Closed: 3-13-2019

Our Big Sioux Recreation Area is closed to all traffic due to flash flooding of entrance roadways. Due to rain fall, snow melt and high water tables. We anticipate this area being closed throughout the weekend.

We also ask if you can avoid driving down to the entrance of the park on West 10th St due to the roadway being under water as well.

2019 Seasonal Summer Positions

Parks and Recreation Department

The Sioux County Conservation Board is looking to hire seasonal help at our Oak Grove, Big Sioux Recreation Area and Sandy Hollow Recreation Area. Whether you are a college student looking for a summer job, a high school student exploring career options or a retired adult looking for something to keep you busy we have a spot for you! We have a variety of positions available with varying hours.

All applicants for the Seasonal Park Technician and Registration Booth Attendants must be able to effectively communicate orally and in writing, apply knowledge and common sense to solve problems and/or achieve work objectives. Must possess a current valid driver’s license, be 16 years of age or older, and undergo background checks in reference to driving record, criminal history and child abuse registry. Deadline for applying is March 31, 2019

See below for further information on each position. Starting wages are experience determined.  Click here for application.

Registration Booth Attendants

If you are someone that enjoys interacting with the public, answering questions, taking care of sales and janitorial cares this position maybe for you. Our Registration Booth Attendants work at our Big Sioux Recreation Area, near Hawarden, IA or at Sandy Hollow Recreation Area, near Sioux Center, IA. You will be responsible for monitoring and registering vehicles entering the park, renting canoes/kayaks, selling snacks, firewood, and other items. Hours vary and include: weekday, weekend, evening and some holiday hours. Typically a 40 hour work week, shifts and hours available depend on applications.

Applicants interested should have the ability to engage with the public and interested in the outdoors.

Seasonal Park Technician

Are you someone that enjoys working with your hands, being outside, cleaning, mowing and various other tasks? Our Seasonal Park Technician position is for you. You will be assisting the full-time Park Ranger/Maintenance Technicians in the day to day operations of the parks and facilities. Duties include but not limited to: weed eating, cleaning restrooms and facilities, cutting firewood, staining, running farm related equipment, mowing, maintaining records and much more.

Applicants interested should have the ability to engage in physical work, previous experience with maintenance, landscaping and farm equipment preferred. Must have an interest in the outdoors and working with people of all ages. Preferred education or training in environmental education, natural resources, wildlife biology, biology/ecology or related field is preferred, but not required.

Click here for application.

Education Department

Summer naturalist position available this summer, starting late May through early August. Position will be based at Oak Grove Park. Typical hours are M-F 8 am-4:30 pm and some Saturdays, 40 hours work week. Please send resume and references to Sioux County Conservation Board, Attn: Sunday Ford, 4051 Cherry Ave, Hawarden, IA 51023 or email to: sundayf@siouxcounty.org. Deadline for applying for position is April 1, 2019.

Summer Naturalist Intern

Our Summer Naturalist Intern will interact with those in all ages and stages of life. You will assist in our summer camp programs, library and other naturalist lead programs. You will be working alongside our full-time naturalist staff in developing and presenting these programs. Must be 16 years of age or older to apply.

Open Range Night Postponed February 14, 2019

We will be postponing our February 14, 2019 open range night due to Valentine’s Day. We will reopen our ranges next week February 21, 2019 weather dependent, in addition to adding March 21, 2019 as an additional night.

The indoor archery range and BB gun range will be open to the public Thursday nights from 6-8 PM. These nights will occur in our heated indoor ranges and are open to the public during this time. All are welcome, youth 15 years of age and under must have adult supervision. Must provide own archery and BB gun equipment. Targets provided. Cost is $5 for both archery and BB gun range per person per night or $3 for one range per person per night. Fee’s payable at the door. Questions please contact the Sioux County Conservation Administration Office at 712-552-1047.

Ranges will be closed due to bad weather check our website or listen to 93.9 FM for cancellations.

Dates open:
February: 21, 28
March: 7, 14. 21

DNR WorkshopS coming to Sioux County

Every year, all across the state of Iowa, citizen scientists make enormous contributions to wildlife conservation by collecting and reporting data on some of the state’s most vulnerable critters. Through the Iowa Department of Natural Resources’ Volunteer Wildlife Monitoring Program (VWMP) citizens are equipped with the proper information and materials to help in these state wide studies. Program Coordinator Stephanie Shepherd explains, “We just don’t have enough staff in the DNR to adequately monitor all the vulnerable species that we need to. This is where citizen scientists play a crucial role.” Every March and April, Shepherd travels around the state to lead training workshops that ready folks to collect data on some of Iowa’s critical wildlife. The following are examples of what the VWMP is like for volunteers:

  • Frog and Toad Call Survey: It’s 10:00 on a summer night along a gravel road anywhere in Iowa. In the farm pond next to the road a raucous chorus of male frogs are making themselves heard as they vie for mates. A volunteer stands clipboard in hand, ear cocked, mentally sorting out each of the calling species which are using this ordinary pond.
  • Bald Eagle Nest Monitoring: It’s a peaceful Saturday morning by the river where a volunteer has binoculars and spotting scope trained on the tallest tree in the vicinity. In this tree is a huge nest, home to two bald eagles and their young. A peaceful half hour is spent watching one of the most spectacular birds in North America.

This year, Sioux County Conservation is teaming up with the DNR to host both a Bald Eagle Nest Monitoring and Frog and Toad Call Survey Training Workshop. Two separate workshops will be held on Saturday, April 13th at the Oak Grove Lodge.

Bald Eagle Nest Monitoring Workshop 9:30am-12:30pm (5$)

Training workshop focuses on some of Iowa’s more spectacular birds of prey such as Bald Eagles, Ospreys, and Peregrine Falcons. Volunteers are taught how to collect data on specific nesting sites around the state and submit pertinent data such as how many young birds fledge. “This data collection requires lots of patience and some good optics in order to watch the nest from a distance and not disturb the birds,” Shepherd indicates. Last year volunteers reported on over 150 Bald Eagle nests across the state.

Frog and Toad Call Survey 1:00-4:00pm (5$)

Training is for a survey that requires a keen ear. Volunteers are trained to listen to and recognize the 16 species of frogs and toads in Iowa based on their breeding calls. In 2016, volunteers surveyed routes consisting of over 350 wetland sites for frog and toad activity. “The frog and toad surveyors are particularly special because to perform the surveys they have to drive back country roads at night along a specified route which would not be everyone’s cup of tea,” Shepherd says. “I think most feel that exploring the Iowa wilds at night is a unique experience and opportunity.”

If you are an adult who is interested in getting involved, you need to register by filling out the DNR form found here and attend a training workshop. The cost of each program covers all materials provided at the workshop. If you would like to register for just one of the workshop it costs five dollars, if you would like to attend both classes the cost is eight dollars. Each class is limited to 15 people, so be sure to get your registration in soon! Registration must be received by April 5th, 2019.

For more information and to fill out a registration form visit: http://www.iowadnr.com/volunteerwildlifemonitoring/ or e-mail vwmp@dnr.iowa.gov.

End of the Year Message from SCCF

Sioux County and the surrounding area,

What a year it has been for the Sioux County Conservation Foundation (SCCF). The Vision Iowa Grant was awarded early on in the year allowing the Foundation and Sioux County Conservation Board (SCCB) to move forward with the Nature Center building. We hosted a ground breaking ceremony on August 1st where many donors turned out to show their support. Bids for the project were gathered in September and work began soon after with Nelson Construction. Did you know each month you can find a project update under the Nature Center page on our website? So far the basement walls have been constructed, the plumbing roughed in and the elevator shaft erected. Crews are working hard to enclose the basement level so work can start on the interior and upper floor.

In other news, the SCCF would like to extend a thank you to all those who have donated in 2018. We appreciate every gift as we wrap us this Capital Campaign, ending the year around 87% funded. Several individuals have asked, “Why start a project when you are not fully fundraised?” The answer is actually quite simple. The 87% covers the building cost and general aspects of the building. Since we received the Vision Iowa Grant there are guidelines in which the project must be completed, and since we cannot predict the future winter, spring, summer or fall weather both boards felt confident to move forward in order to make sure we meet those guidelines and not lose our eligibility for the grant. The remaining 13% covers the extra details of the building; the exhibits, the technology, furniture and other odds and ends. We are confident our supporters will see the project though with us. There is still time to make a 2018 gift! Remember all gifts to SCCF are tax deductible and can be mailed to 1603 Oak Grove Road, Hawarden IA 51023. Or perhaps you wish to fill out a pledge card, or honor a friend/family member with a gift that qualifies for sponsored giving level reflected on an exhibit, classroom or activity space. Information for sponsored giving as well as pledge cards can be found on the Nature Center website.

We would be happy to answer any you may have on the project by calling 712-552-3057 or emailing lmpgnp@midlands.net or sfnaturalist@siouxcounty.org.

Pledge cards, sponsored giving information, monthly updates and more information on the project can be found at: https://siouxcountyparks.org/nature-center/

2019 Open Range Nights

The indoor archery range and BB gun range will be open to the public Thursday nights from 6-8 PM. These nights will occur in our heated indoor ranges and are open to the public during this time. All are welcome, youth 15 years of age and under must have adult supervision. Must provide own archery and BB gun equipment. Targets provided. Cost is $5 for both archery and BB gun range per person per night or $3 for one range per person per night. Fee’s payable at the door. Questions please contact the Sioux County Conservation Administration Office at 712-552-1047.

Ranges will be closed due to bad weather check our website or listen to 93.9 FM for cancellations.
Dates open:
January: 17, 24, 31
February: 7, 14, 21, 28
March: 7, 14

Mark your calendar now for 2019 Summer Camps!!

Registration will open for this year’s summer camps starting at 8 am on Monday April 1, 2019. Pre-registration is required for all camps and will be completed at our www.mycountyparks.com website. Must have an account set up to register, account and camps are free of charge.
All camps will be located at the Oak Grove Lodge at the Oak Grove Park, with the exception of the Overnight Camp being held in our cabins at Oak Grove. Child must attend full length of camp on both dates if offered over multiple days. Figure out your dates now and get ready to register on the 1st of April! Camps fill fast; however, we do utilize the waiting list.

Ages 3-4 Budding Naturalists (Different from last year)
These little naturalists will have a hands-on introduction to nature. Parents/adult must attend. Camp includes games, crafts, and trail hikes and will be from 8:30 am-11 am, on the following dates: June 4, July 18, June 14, and July 26
Ages 5-6 Animal Detectives
Kids will investigate animal clues in the wild, from tracks to scat. This camp includes hands-on activities, games and fun! This two day camp will be offered on June 11 & 12 or June 18 & 19 from either 9 am- noon or 1 pm- 4 pm both dates.
Ages 7-9 How Nature Works
We will transform the Oak Grove Lodge into our own nature laboratory, as we do a variety of nature experiments. We’ll spend times on the trails, playing games, and exploring…Hands on! This two day camp is offered four times this year from 9 am- 2 pm each date. Dates offered include: June 25-26, July 10-11, June 27-28, and July 23-24
Ages 10-12 Wilderness Survival
Learn how to make a shelter, tie knots, make a campfire, and learn to use a gps unit along with other survival tips at this camp. This camp is from 9 am-3 pm on both days. Dates offered are July 16-17 and July 18-19
Ages 13-15 Overnight Camp
This overnight camp will meet at the cabins at Oak Grove and will be full of outdoor fun with night hikes, archery and campfire fun. Meals will be potluck. Camp will start at 9:30 am on July 30 and end at 1:30 pm on July 31.

Figure your dates out now and get ready to register on the 1st of April! Camps fill fast; however, we do utilize the waiting list. Your child may attend one summer camp, however if you are on the waiting list you are welcome to register for multiple waiting lists that work for your family.

Winter 2019 Newsletter

Our winter newsletter is available to view online now. Couple things to highlight:

Upcoming winter programs

Updates on our main county parks

Summer Camp dates are available, registration will start April 1 at 8 am. Click here for that listing.

Reminder that your vehicle passes for the Big Sioux Recreation Area and Sandy Hollow Recreation expire at the end of the month. Visit either park to get one mailed to you or contact the main administration office to get your new passes.

December 31, 2018 is your last chance to get your site application in for the upcoming camping season if you want a permanent site. Application and deposit are due by December 31, 2018. Camping sites are available at Big Sioux Recreation Area, Sandy Hollow Recreation Area and Oak Grove. Click here for application.

Also note we are looking for summer help for the upcoming camping season. Positions include: summer maintenance positions, education intern position and gate attendant. Click here for maintenance and gate attendant applications. For those interested in applying for the education intern position please send resume and cover letter to:
Sunday Ford
Sioux County Conservation Board
4051 Cherry Ave
Hawarden, IA 51023

Click here for more information on these highlights and newsletter.

Giving back on #GivingTuesday

Today is the day! GivingTuesday kicks of the giving season every year. This year, give back to your local community by giving towards the Sioux County Nature Center through the Sioux County Conservation Foundation. All gifts are tax deductible and will help close the gap towards the final goal. For more information and to make an online donation, check out the Nature Center page by clicking here. Pledge cards are also available.

Checks can also be made out and sent to:

Sioux County Conservation Foundation

1603 Oak Grove Road

Hawarden IA 51023