|New Beginners' Butterfly Walk To Take Place Sept. 10 at Ernie Miller Park|
A new Beginners Butterfly Walk at Ernie Miller Park will give participants an opportunity to hike and watch these beautiful creatures.
Drawn by late-blooming flowers in a prairie remnant which was restored in the park about three years ago, hundreds of butterflies have made stops from their southern migration at Ernie Miller Park during early September for the past two years. About 80 percent of these visitors have been monarchs, but there have been other species as well, including painted ladies and sulfur butterflies. The butterflies are being drawn by the tall purple blooms of the gayfeather plant, as well as by other prairie plants including goldenrod and sunflowers. Many of these plants have come up naturally following prairie restoration projects completed in late 2002 in conjunction with Kansas City Wildlands. Those projects removed a number of large eastern red cedar trees which previously choked out the sun-loving prairie plants.
The Beginners Butterfly Walk will take place on Saturday, Sept. 10, beginning at 1 p.m. at the park, which is located at 909 N. Kansas 7 Highway, Olathe. This program is for ages 16 and older and children 10 to 15 accompanied by an adult. A park naturalist will lead the program and give participants a chance to catch a butterfly in a net for up-close observation. Participants should bring a pair of binoculars if they have them and wear long pants, as the meadow where the gayfeathers grow has no trail. Search for the keyword "butterflies " to find this program in the JCPRD's Activities Catalog and online listings.
The cost for one two-hour session is $10 for Johnson County residents or $11 for nonresidents. Preregistration is required.
The Johnson County Park and Recreation District's ACTIVITIES catalog, with information and a registration form, is available for pick-up at all Johnson County Library branches. For more information or to register, call (913) 831-3359 VOICE or (913) 831-3342 TDD. To register online and for updated program listings, see the District’s website at www.jcprd.com