There’s so much to do in our region! Here’s a look at upcoming lectures and educational enrichment.
Through May 10, during museum hours. The latest temporary exhibit opens the door to a city filled with imaginative play. Discovery Center Museum, 711 N. Main St., Rockford, (815) 963-6769, discoverycentermuseum.org.
Pine Cone Feeders
Jan. 26, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Drop in for a cup of hot chocolate and make a pine cone bird feeder. Your feathered friends will thank you. Welty Environmental Center, 1201 W. Big Hill Road, Beloit, (608) 361-1377, weltycenter.org.
Social Justice Poetry Writing Workshop
Feb. 1-29, Sat. 10 a.m. Explore poetry of resistance with spoken word poet Christopher D. Sims. Reg. req. Womanspace of Rockford, 3333 Maria Linden Dr., Rockford, (815) 877-0118, womanspace-rockford.org.
Feb. 8, 1-2:30 p.m. Investigate the hearts of members of the animal kingdom. Dissect a pig heart with students from the University of Illinois medical school. Ages 6 and up. Reg. online. Burpee Museum of Natural History, 737 N. Main St., Rockford, (815) 965-3433, burpee.org.
Short-Eared Owls: Ghosts in the Grass
Feb. 9, 2 p.m. Jacques Nuzzo, of the Illinois Raptor Center, shares the results of a two-year study of these owls, who were among the most numerous owl species before European settlement, but are now an endangered species. Jarrett Prairie Center, 7993 N. River Road, Byron, Ill., (815) 234-8535, byronforestpreserve.com.
History of the Mafia in Rockford
Feb. 11, 6:30-7:45 p.m. Jean Lythgoe, the library’s local historian, discusses the mafia in Rockford from the early 20th century and Prohibition to the little-known stories of retirement in Rockford. Local History Room, Hart Interim Library, 214 N. Church St., Rockford, (815) 965-7606, rockfordpubliclibrary.org.
Galena Bridal Fair
Feb. 15, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Meet vendors serving the greater Galena area and beyond. Door prizes; pre-registration encouraged. Turner Hall, 115 S. Bench St., Galena, Ill., (815) 947-2878, thegalenabridalfair.com.
Feb. 15, 11-3 p.m. Tinker your way through a score of displays provided by local engineering firms. High school teams show off their robotics skills. Discovery Center Museum, Rockford, (815) 963-6769, discoverycentermuseum.org.
Bobcat: Illinois’ Native Cat
Feb. 16, 2 p.m. Jennifer Kuroda, founder of the Illinois Bobcat Foundation, shares every facet of the elusive cat, including history, biology, predator perception and management. Jarrett Prairie Center, Byron, Ill., (815) 234-8535, byronforestpreserve.com.
Tastes & Tunes
Feb. 18, 7:30 p.m. Sample craft beer and listen to music by Wisconsin’s singer/songwriters while supporting improvements to JPAC. Janesville Performing Arts Center (JPAC), 408 S. Main St., Janesville, (608) 758-0297, janesvillepac.org.
Life & Legend of Sojourner Truth
Feb. 20, 6:30-8 p.m. A documentary film about the former slave’s work for abolition and women’s rights, her interest in fashion and singing. She spoke at Court Street Methodist Church in 1859. Nordlof Center, 118 N. Main St., Rockford, (815) 987-6660, rockfordpubliclibrary.org.
The Rusty Patched Bumble Bee
Feb. 23, 2 p.m. Isaac Stewart, of Black Hawk College, speaks about the first U.S. bee species to be added to the Endangered Species list. Its decline of 96% in the past 20 years has implications for food security and ecosystem health. Jarrett Prairie Center, Byron, Ill., (815) 234-8535, byronforestpreserve.com.
Feb. 27, 6:30-8 p.m. Inspired by historical figures, Sue Monk Kidd’s novel presents two struggles for freedom, abolition and women’s rights, voiced by two powerful narrators. Nordlof Center, Rockford, (815) 987-6660, rockfordpubliclibrary.org.
Sips & Sounds
Feb. 29, 6-10 p.m. An evening of sampling fine wines and microbrews from Wisconsin while relaxing to live music. Proceeds benefit Agrace Hospice. Reg. online. Pontiac Convention Center, 2809 N. Pontiac Dr., Janesville, (608) 314-5501, janesvillecvb.com.
Life Through the Lens of Kodak
March 1, 2 p.m. Chicago actor R. J. Lindsey portrays George Eastman, founder of Eastman Kodak. His affordable and easy-to-use cameras allowed common people to capture images of family and events around the world. Jarrett Prairie Center, Byron, Ill., (815) 234-8535, byronforestpreserve.com.
Leader Luncheon XL
March 2, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Elizabeth Smart delivers the keynote address. Abducted and held for nine months when she was 14 years old, Smart speaks about overcoming trauma. YWCA Northwestern Illinois, Giovanni’s Restaurant and Conference Center, 610 N. Bell School Road, Rockford, (815) 316-6126, ywcanwil.org.
Spring Bridal Expo
March 5, 5:30-8:30 p.m. Meet over 30 vendors specializing in wedding dresses, tuxedos, limo services, DJs, photobooths, catering and more. Pontiac Convention Center, Janesville, (608) 531-0284, pontiacacc.com.
History & Archeology of the Sauk Nation & Black Hawk
March 8, 2 p.m. Learn about the successful efforts to locate the Saukenuk village near the present-day Quad Cities, occupied before the Black Hawk War; hear about the events that led to that war. Jarrett Prairie Center, Byron, Ill., (815) 234-8535, byronforestpreserve.com.
March 14, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Dive into the math behind a circle’s circumference, and then apply your new knowledge with related games and crafts. Discovery Center Museum, Rockford, (815) 963-6769, discoverycentermuseum.org.