PMADD Greenburgh Nature Center Reflection – Courtnie

I had such a wonderful day today during Pace Makes a Difference Day at the Greenburgh Nature Center.  The Center for Community Action & Research at Pace (CCARV) with the help of  the Pace Colony of Gamma Sigma Sigma, whom dedicate their time to volunteer work and unity, planned an exceptional way to give back.

The day started off with a small tour of the 33-acre woodland perserve with nature-themed playgrounds, and a wide variety of indoor and outdoor animals.  We then gathered our tools and began to clear out what will soon be the new compost area.  In this compost haven, the center can effectively create new compost and educate visitors in the process on how it’s done.  We sweated and heaved and wheelbarrowed everything and anything we could, all under the close supervision of Ann, one of the staff members.  When we cleared out about as much as we could, we realized only an hour had passed, yet we accomplished so much!

We settled down and decided to chill with the sheep, turkeys and African goats inside their holding area.  I was able to see at that moment that the Greenburgh Nature Center wasn’t a zoo or a just any place to see some animals and trees, this was a truly hands-on experience with nature.

What we didn’t realize was that the real work was just around the trail (literally.)

We were then led by Travis Brady, Director of Education & Living Collections, to a beautiful area off one of the trails that was covered with weeds and brush.  He related to us his visions of a Fairly-like Village with tables and organic huts to attract families onto the trails.  A sort of safe place that stimulates the imagination to create new worlds in the minds of children and adults alike.  Challenge Accepted!!  We got to work.  We lugged logs and  pulled weeds lifted and pushed God knows what, let’s just say none of us were complaning about not having gone to the gym that morning!  With a alot of imagination and even more team work we we able to clear out the whole area and even got started on our Fairy Fortress made out of vines and twigs!

When it was time to go none of us wanted to put down our tools to stop and were already making plans to come back and fiish our “masterpiece” next week.

Travis and the staff were so appreciative of all of our work and decided to treat us to a little hand-on time with some of the animals back inside.  A beautiful Boa Constrictor and the smart White-Necked Raven.

Besides being a significant wildlife habitat, the Greenburgh Nature Center is a hands-on learning center that focuses on how natural enviornment and ecosystems function and allows us to learn how we as human beings can live more sustainably.



With Jonathan (left) and Travis (right) holding the Boa Constrictor after a long day of work.


With the group discussing how we were going to go about the Fairy Village.


Clearing out the future Compost haven….


Building out Fairy Fortress (teamwork was a MUST!!)


ME attempting to… you know what, I have no idea what I was atempting to do!

A HUGE SHOUT-OUT to everyone at Greenburgh Nature Center for allowing us to help out, Gamma Sigma Sigma, and the Center for Community Action & Research at Pace University, Pleasantville for bringing us all together to make it happen.


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Special thanks to Courtnie K. for being a wonderful volunteer!