The Joliet Park District, in partnership with Illinois Audubon Society, Will County Audubon Society and the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission will hold a celebration in honor of the dedication of Pilcher Park as an Illinois Nature Preserve on Saturday, April 27, at 10:30 a.m. at the Pilcher Park Nature Center.
In 2018, 403 acres of Pilcher Park were permanently protected by state law as part of the Illinois Nature Preserve system. A tapestry of nature’s treasures has been protected in Illinois through this nationally acclaimed program.
Opening remarks will take place at the Nature Center and participants will proceed to the Hoberg Tract to explore the new trail and take part in stewardship activities. Funds for the celebration, planned benches and an interpretive sign to be located near the stone arch have been provided by a grant through the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation.
Valued for its rich mesic forest and unique natural attributes Illinois Audubon Society pre-acquired the property in 2015 with the help of Illinois Clean Energy Community foundation on behalf of the Joliet Park District. After receiving a Land and Water Conservation Grant administered by the State of Illinois, the Joliet Park District purchased the property from Illinois Audubon Society and enrolled most of Pilcher Park and all of the Hoberg Tract into the Illinois Nature Preserve system in May of 2018.