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Moonlight Seed Harvest

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PLEASE NOTE: Due to the harvest readiness of certain prairie species and a robust RSVP list, we have moved the event to another part of Chichaqua Bottoms Greenbelt. Updated directions may be found below. Questions? Give Melissa a call on her work cell at 515-339-0933. See you there!

Join Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation and Polk County Conservation for a moonlit evening restoring the prairie at Chichaqua Bottoms Greenbelt, a ten-mile nature preserve half an hour northeast of Des Moines. Together, we’ll hand harvest native prairie seed to diversify and expand the prairie. After, we’ll gather around the campfire at the Youth Camp Area to enjoy s’mores and celebrate the arrival of autumn in good company under the soon-to-be full harvest moon. No experience necessary, all equipment provided. Families welcome!

Please note that we will be working in the dark and walking on uneven terrain. Dress for the weather, wear sturdy shoes, long pants and bring a headlamp or flashlight – if you have one. 

An RSVP is required for this event. Space is limited. Please RSVP by September 28.

Camping is available at Chichaqua for interested attendees. Visit to reserve your campsite.


Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation, Polk County Conservation

About Chichaqua Bottoms Greenbelt

Chichaqua Bottoms Greenbelt encompasses nearly ten miles of reconstructed and remnant prairie, oxbows, marshes and wetlands along the Skunk River in Polk and Jasper Counties. It is home to a diverse mix of plants, wildlife and an abundance of outdoor recreation opportunities. Since 1993, INHF has helped the Polk County Conservation Board (PCCB) and Iowa Department of Natural (DNR) expand Chichaqua Bottoms, adding nearly 5,000 acres. The property is now owned and managed by the PCCB in Polk County, and the DNR in Jasper County.

Please bring:
  • Headlamps, if you have them, or a flashlight
  • Sturdy shoes
  • Long pants
  • Water bottle
  • Insect repellent
  • No experience necessary, all equipment provided
  • Families welcome
  • Please note that we will be working in the dark on uneven terrain
  • Volunteers are encouraged to work at their own pace
  • You will be asked to sign a liability waiver

Chichaqua Bottoms Greenbelt is located half an hour northeast of Des Moines near Elkhart and Bondurant. We'll be working near 12704 98th St., Maxwell. Please park along 126th St.

From the Chichaqua Bottoms Greenbelt park road junction (NE 134th Ave. and NE 80th St.)

Head east on NE 134th Avenue for 3 miles. Turn south (right) onto NE 104th Street. Drive for 1 mile until you reach NE 126th Avenue. Turn west (right) onto NE 126th Avenue and drive for about 0.5 miles until you reach a “Park Here” sign.

From Highway 330 (coming from the south)

Heading northeast on NE Hubbell Ave./Highway 330 and after crossing the Skunk River Bridge, take a left onto NE 112th Street. Drive nearly 2 miles to reach NE 126th Ave and head west (left). Drive 1.5 miles until you reach the “Park Here” sign.

We will have directional signs located at road junctions to assist in locating the collections site. Roadside parking will be available alongside NE 126th Ave. and NE 98th St.

Questions? Give Melissa a call on her work cell at 515-339-0933.



Contact Melanie Louis at or 515-288-1846 x35.

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  2. central iowa trails system
  3. chichaqua bottoms greenbelt
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Saturday, September 30, 2017


Chichaqua Bottoms Greenbelt
Maxwell, IA

Melanie Louis