Family Programs

These programs are intended to provide special one-on-one time for you and your child. Adult participation is required.

Winter Programs

Toddler looking at a turtle

Little Explorers

Age: 2-5 years

Go on hiking adventures with our naturalists, play games and discover the fun that can be had outdoors. Spaces are limited. Dress for the weather and please wear a mask. All children must be accompanied by an adult.


A group of kids with a fun outdoor activity

Outdoor Nature Club

Age: 6-8 years and 9-11 years

Spending time in nature builds resilience, self-confidence, and creativity. We’ll form a nature exploration pod and spend the hour outdoors investigating and learning about nature. Please dress for the weather, wear a mask and be prepared to spend 60 minutes in the great outdoors roaming the forest preserve with experienced naturalists. Meets every other week for 4 sessions.


Hikers enjoy the first preserve

Families Outside

Age: 3+

Explore the habitats of the John Hayes Forest Preserve with naturalist led nature outings that will help you and your family enjoy the wonders surrounding the center. Adults and children must register and all children must be accompanied by an adult.


Creek in winter

Winter Wanders for Adults

Age: 18+.

Enjoy an easy hike through the Hayes Forest Preserve while you learn about the environment. Program is entirely outdoors. Dress for the weather and wear sturdy shoes. Registration required.