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Ijams Nature Center says ‘Take Action!’ March 1-April 14

New conservation series offers big and small ways to save the planet

A new conservation series presented March 1 through April 14 by Ijams Nature Center encourages everyone to become an Action Hero to protect the Earth.

“Take Action! Big and Small Ways to Save the Planet” focuses on big and small changes people can make to conserve natural resources and reduce their carbon footprint. Sponsored by 90.3 The Rock, the six-week series offers programs, workshops, cleanup events, volunteer workdays, movies, an e-cycle event and more.

“People care about and protect what they love,” Ijams Executive Director Amber Parker said. “Ijams Nature Center’s goal is to connect people to nature and inspire them to become good environmental stewards. This new series offers a number of ways we all can have a positive impact on the place we call home.”

Ijams Visitor Services Manager Sarah Brobst, who created the series with Ijams Naturalist Jeremy Clothier, said a number of Take Action! programs are free to ensure they are accessible to everyone. Donations will be accepted to help Ijams continue to provide free and low-cost programs for people to learn about and engage with nature.

“This series is designed to get people from all walks of life involved in environmental conservation,” Brobst said. “Even a small change can make a difference. We have to start somewhere.”

Brobst enlisted a variety community partners to help with the series, including Beth Meadows from The Empathetic Organizer, who will speak about the cost of clutter, and low-impact lifestyle expert Kayla Simon, who will present a series of zero-waste talks and workshops. River Sports Outfitters is cohosting a lecture by Leave No Trace Master Educator Lydia Williams, who will discuss how to enjoy recreational activities while protecting the great outdoors for future generations.

Ijams is partnering with Slow Foods Tennessee Valley for an evening celebrating clean, organic eating and friendly farming practices. John Coykendall, renowned seed saver, classically trained artist and master gardener at Blackberry Farm, will speak at the event, which includes a screening of the documentary Deeply Rooted: John Coykendall’s Journey to Save Our Seeds and Stories. Central Cinema will show screenings of the family-friendly animated movie FernGully: The Last Rainforest at its new theatre on Central Street in Happy Holler.

Festivities kick off March 2 with the fourth annual Weed Wrangle Knoxville®, a citywide volunteer effort to remove nonnative, invasive plants that wreak havoc on native habitats. Volunteers will wrestle weeds at Ijams Nature Center’s Grayson Subaru Preserve and several other sites in the community. Volunteers are still needed.

The finale April 14 is an Action Hero Conservation Celebration open to everyone who has participated in at least two Take Action! activities. Sponsored by Cherokee Distributing and Sierra Nevada Brewing Company, the event will celebrate the impact Action Heroes have taken over the six weeks and will feature data on what was accomplished, live music from the classic British rock band The Beatclub, food trucks and a beer garden. Those who have taken part in four or more activities will receive a special reward.

Take Action! Events and Activities:

March 2 - Weed Wrangle Knoxville®, 9 a.m.-noon
March 5 - Zero Waste 101, 6-7:30 p.m.
March 9 - Volunteer Workday: Litter Pickup at Grayson Subaru Preserve, 9 a.m.-noon
March 9 - Citizen Science: Take Action!, 10 a.m.-noon
March 9 - Family Fun With FernGully: The Last Rainforest, 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. (Central Cinema)
March 10 - Family Fun With FernGully: The Last Rainforest, 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. (Central Cinema)
March 10 - DIY Zero Waste Living: Body Products, 3-4:30 p.m.
March 12 - The Cost of Clutter Workshop, 6-8 p.m.
March 16 - Farragut Program: Fuzzy Friends, 11 a.m.-noon
March 19 - Leave No Trace Workshop, 6 p.m.
March 21 - Nature Nuggets: In the Weeds, 10-11 a.m.
March 23 - Volunteer Workday: Wattle Fence Extension at Jo’s Grove, 9 a.m.-noon
March 23 - ECycle for Earth, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
March 26 - Low Impact Living in Knoxville, 6:00-7:30 p.m.
March 30 - Volunteer Workday: Invasive Removal at Ijams, 9 a.m.-noon
March 31 - Planting the Seeds: A Talk, Movie, Seed Swap and Potluck featuring Deeply Rooted: John Coykendall’s Journey to Save Our Seeds and Stories, 5-8 p.m.
April 5 - An Evening With Living Lands & Waters
April 6 - 30th Annual Ijams River Rescue presented by TVA, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
April 14 - Action Heroes Conservation Celebration

For more information or to register for Take Action! activities, visit

Published February 26, 2019

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