Campfire Talk: People, Time and the Prairie Landscape

Campfire Talk: People, Time and the Prairie Landscape


Learn about the unique relationship of native people to the prairie landscape at the Nygren Wetland Preserve from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on Aug. 17. Ivan Dozier, district conservationist and the first Native American liaison for the Natural Resources Conservation Service, will speak at the third in a series of campfire talks hosted by the Natural Land Institute. The program is free and open to the public at the preserve a mile west of Rockton at 3190 West Rockton Road.

Dozier’s passion for prairie restoration began when he saw a prairie remnant for the first time. Big bluestem, Indian grass–all growing up over his head–inspired him to help restore more than 60 pieces of prairie in the state. Now he believes that planting even the smallest patch of prairie brings something valuable to the people who tend it, and he supplies seeds and technical advice on how to keep prairie plants healthy.

Dozier graduated from the University of Illinois at Champaign in 1982 and earned his master’s degree in environmental planning at Sangamon State University. His family has lived in Illinois since the 1700s. Both his parents are half Cherokee.

The Natural Land Institute is planting native vegetation at the Nygren Wetland Preserve to restore the special natural character and beauty of the land. Volunteers have planted thousands of tree and prairie seedlings in the restoration effort that will last many years.

Established in 1958, the Natural Land Institute is a private, member-supported, nonprofit conservation organization that protects land, water and wildlife in Illinois and southern Wisconsin.

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