La Vista Ecological Learning Ctr. Celebrates Spring Equinox

By Will Shaw with Sr. Maxine Pohlman, SSND, Photos Courtesy of La Vista Ecological Learning Center

The La Vista Ecological Learning Center in Godfrey, Illinois was the scene of a Spring Equinox Celebration on Saturday March 19.

More than twenty people from around the area (including a lively group of children from St. Louis brought by La Vista supporter, Maria Knapp) joined La Vista Director, Sr. Maxine Pohlman, SSND, the Oblate Novices and Oblate Fathers, Jack Lau and Rudy Nowakowsky for a day of fun and learning.

According to Sr. Maxine, the purpose of celebrating the change of season is to, “Deepen our sense that we belong to a planet, so we view ourselves as planetary beings. As members of Earth we hopefully, will feel responsible for taking care of our common home, and our local region in particular.”

Activities included the making of “seed tombs.” Seeds are rolled into a ball of clay along with some compost. These are dried and then tossed into an area that needs native plants. As the rains decompose the clay, the seeds will germinate, grow and then flower, providing nectar for pollinators like butterflies, bees and moths.

In addition, Fr. Jack Lau explained that butterflies need more than just the nectar from flowers; they also need minerals which they get from puddles of standing water when available. So, Fr. Jack showed the group how to set up, and keep “Butterfly puddles” in a backyard (or anywhere) to attract butterflies and supply the minerals they need to thrive.

Afterwards, the snacks and treats everyone brought were happily consumed before the event ended at 4 PM.