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Allegany Nature Pilgrimage Weekend

As the days get warmer, the birds louder, the leaves greener, and the light lasts longer, we start thinking about summer plans. If you haven’t yet booked the first weekend in June for your summer outside kick off, this is a great weekend to join in on. If you are into the idea of camping, but love the idea of joining a crew of kindred souls, while learning from the most passionate naturalists, birders, geologists, and outdoors people in Western New York, this offers a great opportunity to delve into all of it. It’s an especially great weekend for those unfamiliar with our natural surroundings to investigate all there is to learn about salamanders, birds, insects, trees, flowers, animal tracks and signs, astronomy, and ecology. It’s also a great format to get your whole family outside for a weekend together.

One week left to register for the Allegany Nature Pilgrimage weekend, June 2 – 4, for the lowest rate of $35!

Cedar waxwing banding

The more romantic of us can also learn to build fairy houses (basic and advanced), take up watercolor paints, sketchpads, make paper, and practice our photography. Workshops and guided hikes are available for all ages. Included in the program listing is an all-day birding trip, lessons in using binoculars and field guides to identify birds with kids, a visit to a beaver colony, nature-journaling, plant walks, night walks, fungi hunts, insect hunts, owl calling, salamander studies, and wild herb foraging. Cabin and tent sites are available for rent, or you can book a hotel room just a few miles away. 

Activities start 10 a.m. Friday, June 2 and continue through to Sunday afternoon, June 4. All of the details are available online. You can also register and pay at

The weekend rate goes up to $45 for adults after April 30. Children are always only $5 and daily rates are also available for $25. 

Written by Arete


Megan Mills Hoffman, Alaskan-born and raised, arrived in Buffalo in 2003 thinking she'd stay for a few months, much like her other brief sojourns in Missoula, Montana; Oxford, Mississippi; Portland, Oregon; and Albany, New York. Then she discovered Wegman's cheese aisle and Frank Lloyd Wright's Darwin Martin House, the first of which reminded her of her mother's experience living outside Manchester, England and the second of her father's experience in construction in Alaska. While discovering Buffalo's others treasures, she worked with Buffalo Rising as it first expanded online, the Burchfield Penney Art Center's New Museum Project, Buffalo State College, Western New York Land Conservancy, Young Audiences, and The Gow School. She has served on the boards of the Allentown Association, Mandala School, Western New York Environmental Alliance, and Field and Fork Network. With a B.S. in Sociology and twenty plus years of experience working in community development and grassroots organizations, she has embraced, developed, launched, and established, to varying degrees of success, a variety of local social movements, all directed at changing the way we think about our education and learning. She lives in a small town south of Buffalo, much like the one she grew up in, with her Buffalo-born husband, daughter, and Bernese Mountain dog.

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