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Mathes Savanna Winter Workday (Pella)

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Curb your cabin fever with a morning outdoors! Volunteers will remove brush and non-native plants to help the oak savanna - a lightly forested grassland dominated by oak trees - at Mathes Savanna thrive. Volunteers are welcome to stay and hike around the oak savanna and woodland after the event.

Invasive brush removal involves using various hand tools (handsaws or loppers) to manually cut invasive brush. Participants may work to remove plants with thorns. No experience necessary. Instruction will be provided. New and seasoned volunteers welcome.

An RSVP is requested.


The Mathes Savanna encompasses 51 acres with rolling hills of oak/hickory savanna, woodland and a plethora of spring ephemeral wildflowers. The property sits atop a ridge just before dropping into the South Skunk River floodplain north of the property. This natural area sits just a few miles outside the town of Pella and is a refuge for wildlife, including deer, turkey, owls and a number of birds. Mathes came to Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation (INHF) through a bequest from former landowner, Harold Mathes, in 2010. It is now owned and stewarded by INHF.

  • Sturdy shoes or hiking boots
  • Long pants and layers. You may be working with thorny plants so sturdy clothes that can withstand rips (or you don't mind ripping) are encouraged.
  • Work gloves and water bottle
  • A hiking stick, binoculars, field guide and/or camera, if you like

From Pella, head north on Main St. about 1.5 miles. Turn right onto 228th Pl. until the stop sign. Turn left onto 240th Pl. to the first gravel road. Turn left on Dakota Dr. and look for INHF signs. Parking is available along the north side of Dakota Dr. 

> Google map


Contact Land Stewardship Associate Derek Miner at 

Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation is committed to an equitable opportunity for volunteers to gather, in which we strive toward an environment that is both safe and welcoming for all. INHF continues to work toward creating a more inclusive environment that encourages, supports and affirms the diverse backgrounds of our volunteers. Attendees whose words, actions or behaviors make other attendees feel unsafe or unwelcome at INHF volunteer events will be asked to leave.  


Saturday, March 2, 2024

10:00am - 12:30pm

2365 Dakota Dr.
Pella, IA 50219

Derek Miner