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Monarchs, praying mantis topics of upcoming MCCD programs

Kids will examine the body parts, behaviors and the egg cases of praying mantis before journeying outside in search of the insect.

The exploration is one program the McHenry County Conservation District will put on this month. Some of the others include:

• Searching for the Praying Mantis: 9:30 to 11 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 6, at Prairieview Education Center, 2112 Behan Road, Crystal Lake. Children ages 6 to 12 will learn about the large predator insect known as the praying mantis. The program is free for county residents and $5 for non-residents. The registration deadline is Aug. 2.

• Discovery Days: 10 to 11:30 a.m. Friday, Aug. 8, at Hickory Grove Highlands Conservation Area, 500 Hickory Nut Grove Lane, Cary. A series of stations – including playing games, making a craft and eating a snack – will all based around the special theme of the day. The program is for children ages 2 to 6 accompanied by an adult. It is free for county residents and $3 for non-residents. The registration deadline is Aug. 4.

• Animal Super Heroes: 1:30 to 3 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 9, at Prairieview Education Center, 2112 Behan Road, Crystal Lake. Kids ages 7 to 10 will learn about how animals adapt. Attendees should be ready to explore and wear long pants and sleeves. The program is free for county residents and $5 for non-residents. The registration deadline is Aug. 5.

• Monarchs and Milkweed: 1:30 to 3 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 10, at Prairieview Education Center, 2112 Behan Road, Crystal Lake. A brief overview of monarch butterflies, their life-cycle, migration patterns, and programs that track their migrations will be presented. Afterward, attendees will walk the trails through the summer prairie in search of monarchs and their larvae. This program is for adults and families ages 5 and up. It is free for county residents and $2 for non-residents. The registration deadline is Aug. 6.

Prior registration is required and is accepted online at www.MCCDistrict.org; by phone (free programs only) at 815-479-5779; by mail and walk-in at Prairieview Education Center, 2112 Behan Road in Crystal Lake; or walk-in only at Lost Valley Visitor Center, Route 31 and Harts Road in Ringwood.

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