Connecting People With Nature
Nature At The Confluence is a new urban environmental center that opened in 2017. We invite you to stop in for a visit to discover nature right in the middle of an urban area! We’re located on property surrounded by the Rock River, Turtle Creek and Kelly Creek, and you’ll find scenic beauty during every season. The campus offers a 5-acre prairie restoration, learning gardens, pollinator gardens and we have programs throughout the year for all ages and interests! Visit our calendar to see all we have to offer and come see us soon!
Upcoming Events and Programs
“Protectors of the Corn Moon: How the Rock River Ho-Chunks Hid 1,200 Fugitive Indians & Mired U.S. Troops During the 1832 Black Hawk War”
- This is a free program, but registration is required as seating is limited. Please register below.
- An optional 1/2 hour guided walk after the program will further investigate Ke-Chunk village and their gardens. You’ll also see the new “Ke-Chunk Ciporke” sculpture by Ho-Chunk artist Truman Lowe which honors the Ho-Chunk Native Americans who once lived at the confluence of Turtle Creek and the Rock River.
Please join us for a fascinating talk by Dr. Libby Tronnes that reconsiders the role of the Rock River Ho-Chunk Indians during the Blackhawk War. After over 1,200 members of the Sauk band led by Black Hawk fled into Ho-Chunk lands and were pursued by over 3,000 white troops, the Rock River Ho-Chunk attempted to thwart violence on their soil and avoid the destruction of their corn crop by guiding both U.S. troops and Sauk band Indians. You’ll learn how White Crow and Whirling Thunder, leaders at Ke-Chunk village located at the confluence of the Rock River and Turtle Creek, played a major part in this crisis.
Derived from Tronnes’ dissertation, this presentation seeks to correct our flawed understandings of the so-called “Black Hawk War” by reconsidering the role of the Rock River Ho-Chunks during that crisis, which began in April 1832 and resulted in Ho-Chunk land loss and removals from Illinois and Wisconsin.
Presented by Dr. Libby Tronnes, assistant professor of history at Bradley University
This is a program Of Our “Time Traveler Series” which is supported by a grant from the Greater Beloit Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors.
Please Register for This Free Program
If this land could talk it would tell you about the people that cared for it, revered it, cried for it, dreamed of it, and shaped it over the millennia. The people of Ke-Chunk, a large Ho-Chunk village, tended crops in the rich soil. When they left in 1832, a fur trader built a small cabin for his two Native American wives and children to live in. Then settlers moved in, taming the land, including Irish migrant railroad workers who created a settlement here they called “Illinoy”. Later, an orphan lad left his home overlooking Turtle Creek to join the Army where he made the ultimate sacrifice through his heroic actions in battle. General Pershing later called him one of the greatest heroes of World War I.
Yes, if this land could talk, it would tell you about those who loved and cared for it, and those who, unfortunately, did not. Nature At The Confluence’s Executive Director, Therese Oldenburg will tell you about the fascinating history of this land and the people who lived here, and she’ll also share with you how she unearthed “dirty” family ties to it. You’ll also learn about how we’re making our own mark on this land by bringing it back to life, one shovel full at a time. Donations are appreciated so we can continue our work on restoring the land.
- Optional short walk about the property after the program to view specific sites discussed in the presentation.
- Free Event. Registration is limited to 40 people. Please register below to secure your spot.
- Held on two dates – Sunday, June 14, 1pm and Sunday, September 13, 1pm
About The “Time Traveler” Discovery Series – If this land could talk it would tell you about the people that cared for it, revered it, cried for it, dreamed of it, and shaped it over the millennia. The Time Traveler Discovery Series will explore the fascinating history of this land and the people who lived or worked near the confluence of Turtle Creek and the Rock River over the centuries. Learn more here
Register Now to Secure Your Spot!
Friends of Doreen Dalman have selected to support an outdoor project at Nature At The Confluence in Doreen's memory. Doreen was involved in the early planning stages of Nature At The Confluence in her role as Head Librarian at South Beloit Library. She was very...read more
Nature At The Confluence is celebrating our official opening for the summer by helping kids and their families discover and learn about nature with a free Nature Exploration Pack for kids ages 4-7. These packs are made possible through a donation by the Judith H....read more