kids spray enviroscapeThanks to a grant from Toledo Community Foundation, Toledo Botanical Garden (TBG) Education Department has been able to reach out to fourth grade teachers from 14 nearby elementary schools in a project entitled “Ottawa River Watershed Neighbors.” This learning outreach program will leverage Toledo Botanical Garden’s Lake and Hill Ditch Stream Restoration Project to provide in-school programs and field trips to 805 area students, support many fourth grade Ohio Core Curriculum concepts in Earth and Life Sciences and install permanent singage for the project. Activities related to watersheds, erosion, weather, ecosystems, food chains and conservation will all be covered through hands-on activities, experiments, and games. TBG is excited to work with 37 teachers from the Ottawa River Watershed through classroom visits this winter followed by “Super Field Trips” to Toledo Botanical Garden in spring of 2014. With the help of the grant, Toledo Botanical Garden hopes to reach over 1,000 youth in the Toledo area.

The Toledo Community Foundation grant also allows TBG’s Education Department to reach out to area Boy Scouts in a series of programs to work on merit badges and other advancements related to soil and water conservation for fifth grade through high school Scouts. TBG served over 100 Boy and Cub Scouting youth last fall and hopes to reach out to additional youth, including Girl Scouts and American Heritage Girls this spring. TBG is excited that so many children will get hands-on education experiences and learn how important the Ottawa River is in their community with these programs. Further details of  their soil and water conservation programs for Scouts are on their education website at For all other inquiries, call 419-536-5589 or e-mail [email protected].