Blue Heron Miranda Swaim

City living can often be an obstacle to enjoying the great outdoors, but there is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the natural and native world hidden in the heart of Buckhead. Miranda Swaim, Marketing and Communications Coordinator with Blue Heron Nature Preserve accompanies us on today’s episode of Around Atlanta, to talk about a magical world sitting right in our backyard.

As an Atlanta native who loved the outdoors and nature, Swaim has a deep appreciation for preserving the wildlife, native plant species and green space of Atlanta. Blue Heron, the 30-acre natural wilderness located just off Roswell Road in Atlanta began when Buckhead was just beginning to develop. The founder was worried that green space would be lost and natural creatures and land would no longer exist in a bustling city.

Today, Blue Heron invites everyone to walk or picnic on the grounds free of charge to take in the beauty of the outdoors. There are several programs, art and nature classes, events and day camps that everyone can attend to help educate themselves and others on preserving Atlanta’s natural wildlife. A popular program known as Meadows for Monarchs is a partnership between Blue Heron and Georgia Power that helps protect native grass such as milkweed and other nectar plants for butterflies. The simple garden, tucked behind the office of the Blue Heron Nature Preserve is making a huge impact on butterfly conservation.

A new project, The Blueway Trail Initiative, is a two-phase project that aims to connect our community through nature. In process is the construction for the first phase which included adding bridges, boardwalks, crosswalks and ADA facilities to help connect communities to nature. Phase one should be completed mid-2019 and phase two will connect the Blueway Trail to Chastain Park and the Beltline via Path 400.

To help celebrate the hard work that Blue Heron is doing for our nature preserves, everyone is invited to come this weekend, August 11, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. for a special dedication of the Field Research Center at the Land O’ Lakes location. This is the perfect time to take family and friends to tour the facility and exhibits and to also participate in the firefly hike that will wrap up the evening.

Blue Heron Nature Preserve is open every day, free to the public from dawn to dusk. To get involved and learn more about classes, camps and events tune into today’s podcast by clicking the link above or visit www.bhnp.org.

 

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