Happy New Year from Save the Prairie Society!

Save the Prairie Society would like to wish you and yours a very Happy New Year!  2015 is slated to be one of the most exciting years for StPS and we hope you will join us on our mission of ecological and historical preservation.  Please keep watch here for updates on prairie restoration, Prairie House renovation, volunteer opportunities, events, and more! See you in 2015!


STPS Educational Tour with the Oak Park Summer Program

This summer, STPS Director Dr. EJ Neafsey lead a group of students from the Oak Park Summer Program through Wolf Road Prairie. EJ was able to talk about natural history and ecology in the beautiful setting of the summer prairie. The group’s leader, Stephanie Kirchner, had this to say about the tour:

The day was the highlight of our 7 weeks, and I am sure none of us will  forget it – your fascinating presentation, your magical tour of the prairie, and of course, the beautiful day . . .



We would like to thank Stephanie and her group of great young people for their interest and enthusiasm! STPS’ mission is not only to preserve and restore nature, but to educate the public about it as well!


If you would like to arrange a prairie tour for students or other education programs, please contact us at


or call Rita McCabe at

(708) 354-5512

Icy Accents

STPS President Lawrence Godson captured a great photo of the historic Franzosenbusch Prairie House after our early March winter storm. The mid-nineteenth century structure has endure many winters and still stands strong against the harsh and variable Chicago weather. It’s a pretty sight!


Click for Full Size

Click for Full Size

Happy Thanksgiving from STPS!

Happy Thanksgiving from Save the Prairie Society!

We’re thankful for all the people who make our work possible and anyone who cares about saving our environment. Without you, scenes like this wouldn’t be possible!

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STPS on OneToday

Are you an Android user looking to give to charities?  Google has you in mind with their app OneToday.one_today_logo


OneToday allows android users to donate $1 to a daily featured charity.  You can match friends donations and share with other users the project you are supporting.


Save the Prairie Society has joined up with OneToday with a campaign for our restoration management work. If you’d like to donate to STPS, download the app from the Google Play Store (the app is free) and look for our campaign to be featured as the daily OneToday Project in the future.


We will also make a post when we are the featured daily OneToday project.


For more information on OneToday, visit the official page here.

Thank you for supporting STPS!

Butterfly Monitoring at Wolf Road Prairie

js720_fmgallery (45)I have been a gardener for most of my life (since I was 13, so gardening for 30 yrs), and the past ten years have been spent specifically gardening for butterflies and then learning all about all of the different species and their fascinating life cycles.


This year I am taking this interest into more organized formats to spread awareness and contribute to their survival. With some other people in Oak Park, we are creating a Wild Ones chapter in the hope of encouraging people to incorporate more natural landscaping which is friendlier to butterflies, birds, and other creatures.


I also decided to participate in a different way in the study of butterflies and to volunteer for the Illinois Butterfly Monitoring Network (IBMN). The IBMN’s purpose is to collect data about butterflies through citizen scientists. Tracking the numbers of butterflies gives useful information about a particular habitat.


Monitors are supposed to visit their assigned site 6-8 times from Memorial Day through August 8; 4 of those visits need to happen before July 20 and data needs to be entered online. Monitors may net the butterflies to obtain specific identification, but I do not feel quite comfortable enough to do that yet. Many of the butterflies we are looking for are ones that I am familiar with and can identify while in flight. Now, some of those similar-looking skippers and small hairstreaks who might move off too fast are another story! Luckily, even unidentified skippers or hairstreaks are still useful data.


This is my first year, and I am so happy to do it at Wolf Road Prairie. It is a special place, and one I look forward to visiting each time. I love seeing the changing landscape and hearing and seeing beautiful birds too. I haven’t seen a Common Yellowt-throat in forever and have never seen a Woodcock but saw one up close when we startled each other. Thanks to all of you that have worked so hard to preserve such a magnificent place.

–Stephanie Walquist

Willowbrook Whole Foods Fundraiser for STPS

Shop Willowbrook Whole Foods Market and Support Save the Prairie Society. 

When you reuse your grocery bag you can choose to donate your dime refund to Save the Prairie Society.  As part of Earth Month, Whole Foods Market Willowbrook (201 63rd Street in Willowbrook west of 83) is proud to support our organization consisting of dedicated volunteers working to preserve and restore the 80-acre Wolf Road Prairie and buffer lands, a surviving part of the less than 1/100th of 1% high quality prairie that remains in Illinois.  In addition, we are also restoring the historical prairie house with plans to use it as a nature museum without compromising its historical features.  The fundraiser runs from now until June 30 at the Willowbrook location ONLY.  


Now Showing: The Wild Hyacinth

The wild hyacinth is now carpeting Wolf Road Prairie’s savanna floor with their blossoms, and when there is a breeze their perfume fills the air.  Look also for white starry Solomon seal and pink wild geraniums.  On the prairie, you will find little islands of yellow wood betony, as well as the delicate blue-eyed grass, which sometimes appears blue, but at other times is white tinged with blue, scattered throughout the prairie.  Enjoy the stronger colors of the butter-scotch colored hoary puccoon, and the golden Alexanders.  And for the observant, the white flowers of the wild strawberries are blooming close to the ground.  (Photo by Barbara A. Schreiber)