Free events, tours in Meadowlands

Commission hosts special events in honor of anniversary

It’s typical for those marking birthdays to live it up a little and celebrate in an extra special way, and so it is with the New Jersey Meadowlands Commission (NJMC).
The state agency, which oversees zoning in portions of towns in the Meadowlands, turns 40 this year. To celebrate, the NJMC has loads of festive events lined up throughout the year, including a number of outings and events this summer.
“One thing that we wanted to do is just highlight the natural resources here and show people that there’s an amazing natural resource right here in their own back yard,” said NJMC spokesman Jim Wright.
The events planned for this summer are, Wright said, geared to encourage local residents to “get out there” and enjoy the NJMC’s campus, known as DeKorte Park. The park is located in Lyndhurst, just outside the county, but there will also be events in Secaucus.

Events

On Saturday, June 27, the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra will present a special outdoor concert at DeKorte Park which will be preceded by nature walks through the NJMC campus.
“We wanted to have one big outdoor event that would get everyone down to the Meadowlands,” Wright said. “Since this is our 40th anniversary, we wanted to have at least one ‘wow’ event, and this is it.” The concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. and will cost $5 for adults. Children and teens under 17 can attend for free.
Next month, on Sunday, July 19, the NJMC and the Bergen County Audubon Society will team up to present the outdoor workshop “Butterflies for Beginners.”

Nature walk, clean-up planned

Later in the season, on Saturday, Aug. 22, photographer Kevin Karlson, who happens to also be an expert in shore birds, will lead a nature walk and teach participants the ins and outs of shore bird identification.

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“We like people getting involved. We tend to think people appreciate a place when they take ownership of it.” – Jim Wright
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The NJMC periodically hosts clean up efforts along rivers and creeks in the region, the first of which will be Saturday, June 6 at Mill Creek Marsh in Secaucus.
“We wanted to do something to mark National Trail Day, but wanted to do something that was proactive and did something to restore the quality of the water and land, so we decided to do a clean up,” Wright said. “Mill Creek Marsh is a great spot and a lot of people don’t know it exists. It’s almost in their backyard in Secaucus. It’s a well-kept secret and it’s absolutely beautiful.”
He added that there will likely be another clean-up at Mill Creek or perhaps the Kearny marsh at the end of the summer season, although no specific date has been set yet.
“We like people getting involved,” Wright said. “We tend to think people appreciate a place when they take ownership of it.”
To inquire about any of these events or to RSVP, call (201) 460-2002.

To learn more about the beauty of the Meadowlands, and DeKorte Park specifically, visit http://meadowblog.net.
E-mail E. Assata Wright at awright@hudsonreporter.com.

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