Wenatchee Naturalist field trip

The Wenatchee Naturalist course offered through Wenatchee Valley College includes field trips to the White, Wenatchee, Entiat and Columbia river corrdidors. Pictured here is field trip leader, wildlife biologist and artist Heather Murphy, teaching a class from the banks of the White River.

If you are looking for a way to deepen your connection to both the natural and human aspects of our collective home, consider becoming a Wenatchee Naturalist!

Registration is open for the next 50-hour Wenatchee Naturalist course offered by Wenatchee Valley College (WVC) Continuing Education, Sept. 18-Dec. 11. The course is designed to allow participants to meet new friends, discover lovely local places to visit again and to gain new eyes for the natural wonders of North Central Washington.

To date, more than 200 people, ages 12-81, have completed the course and become Wenatchee Naturalists.

The course includes a weekly Wednesday evening class and four Saturday field trips — Sept. 21, Oct. 12, Nov. 9 and Dec. 7. Field trips explore habitats along the White, Entiat, Columbia, and Wenatchee River corridors, guided by expert guest field scientists.

The interdisciplinary course includes readings, lectures, handouts, guest scientists, labs, and nature journaling. Field trips explore three ecosystems (shrub-steppe, riparian and dry forest), focusing on 100 common species of the Wenatchee watershed. Every class includes hands-on activities and practice using a science field journal.

Tuition is $365 and includes supplies, a field journal and a loaned min-library and hand lens. Clock hours are available for teachers.

The course is offered annually in the fall. If you have questions, contact me at skylinebal@gmail.com or 669-7820.

Visit the newly launched Wenatchee Naturalist website at wenatcheenaturalist.com. Register for the WVC Continuing Education course at wvc.edu/ced.

Susan Ballinger is an instructor for the Wenatchee Naturalist course offered through Wenatchee Valley College.