LOTTS of Nature

Toledo, OH

The Lucas County Board of Developmental Disabilities wants to make sure that all people eligible for disability services have strengths, value, rights and responsibilities. The Board believes in respect and self-determination, and empowers people with support to make informed decisions.

Lotts of Nature participants learning about birds
(Photo © LoN)
Lotts of Nature is a project for people with developmental disabilities. Members plant a garden and share the beauty and produce, educating their friends and neighbors about the native plants they’ve planted–especially how those plants help urban birds with habitat and food. Lotts of Nature tries to help share these great projects and have fun too!

We plan to have a garden party where we can use our own grown produce to provide refreshments. We’ll have tours of our garden with bird observation for the participants, and include music played by students from the nearby Toledo School for the Arts. Nature-inspired artwork, bird houses, and feeders will be for sale, and kids will be able to participate in crafts and art stations focused on urban birds. Information on native plants and birds will be available to participants. We hope to have representatives from local wildlife organizations on hand with displays, such as Metroparks of the Toledo Area, Black Swamp Bird Observatory and Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge.

Lotts of Nature participants planting trees
(Photo © LoN)
Many of our LOTTS of Nature group are quite artistic. LOTTS of Nature had a nature photo show in November & December of 2010 at the National Center for Nature Photography. Our garden and the birds we observe throughout the year will be inspiration for photos and artwork. Some of the art will become part of our garden. The water feature and seating area will be areas where our artistic creativity will be expressed. We are already designing some creative bird houses for our garden.

Lotts of Nature participants working with The Nature Conservancy
(Photo © LoN)
This is the first time LOTTS of Nature club has ever applied for a grant. Our goal is to be equal partners in our community. Our garden will be our way of sharing what we have learned about urban birds and their habitat with the wider community. Our goal is for our event participants to realize that a better habitat for urban birds improves the urban environment for everyone.

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