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Family Time: Yes, embrace Minnesota winter

January 31, 2019

Head outdoors with the entire family at Quarry Hill Nature Center’s ′ It’s Snow Crazy.′ Part of the WinterFest lineup, the early afternoon event is designed to get family members of all ages off the couch and into the winter spirit.

“It’s Snow Crazy is an opportunity for families to embrace being outside and have fun enjoying our Minnesota winter,” said Pam Meyer, the nature center’s executive director. “In February we have Groundhog Day and we start to think spring. And yes, we may see signs of spring, but there’s still plenty of winter left and plenty of opportunity to enjoy it.”

The annual event typically draws around 100 attendees. Activities begin outside the 329-acre park’s nature center.

“We’ll use Quarry Hill’s backyard (the area behind the nature center) for ice bowling, snow snakes, and snowball toss,” said Meyer. “Definitely dress for the weather, because all activities are held outside.”

Then families will make their way up to Quarry Hill’s new Prairie House for snow candy, a roaring fire, and a game of I Spy.

“Families will be invited to play a game of I Spy Spring as they hike up to the Prairie House, looking for signs of spring around the park,” said Meyer. “Once there, the building will be open, we’ll have a fire going, and we’ll be making maple syrup candy as we learn all about the science of maple syruping. We’ll boil down real maple syrup a bit further, pour it into the snow and roll it onto a popsicle stick. It’s a yummy treat.”

The cost is $5 per person. Call ahead to reserve your spot. Proceeds benefit the natural science programming offered year round at Quarry Hill Nature Center.

“A visit to Quarry Hill is a great idea any time of the year,” Meyer said. “It’s especially great this time of year. After a snowfall, families can look for signs of who is out and about in the park, who’s hanging out at the feeders. You might find a chewed pine cone or tracks in the snow. There are a lot of signs that animals leave behind. It’s always fun to guess who it might be.”

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