Events and Programs

The Sally Manzara Interpretive Nature Center Building Hours: Monday through Saturday 9 AM to 4 PM, Sunday 10 AM to 4 PM. Outdoor features and activities are available as shown below, the Park is open 6 AM to dark (half hour past Sunset).

Admission to Lake Elmo’s Sunfish Lake Park and to the Sally Manzara Interpretive Nature Center are free of charge.   FREE events and programs are so marked.  Registration and  payment for most programs with fees is available on-line via Paypal, or contact the Event producer directly with the contact information shown.

FREE – Weekly Tai Chi class with Paul Ryberg –

every Wednesday 10 AM to 11 AM, on the patio if weather is good, inside if it rains. Learn to improve your balance and coordination with this low-impact exercise program. Free coffee or tea and camaraderie afterwards. Email Paul at pryberg@gmail.com for more information. No need to register, just come.

Adult Education Series: Mighty Mussels of the St. Croix

Presenter: Denise Gerdes, Environmental Educator

Thursday, June 23 from 7-8:30pm Cost: $10/person Register with button below

Join us for our inaugural adult series presentation on Minnesota’s mussels. Discover the fascinating interconnectedness of our Minnesota mussels and its rivers through interactive instruction with local expert Denise Gerdes, Environmental Educator. All across Minnesota, our rivers have a rich history of mussels. The St. Croix River is unique in the world, housing 41 of the 51 species in Minnesota. In this interactive instruction, you will learn their simple structure, how they spread their glochidia, and how they clean the water working as “kidneys of the river”. Discover how Zebra mussels are different, how mussels helped to grow several Minnesota industries, and the modern day threats to their survival. The MN DNR reports that 28 of our 51 native mussel species are listed as endangered, threatened, or of special concern.

Registration/Payment for “Mussels of the St. Croix River” June 23rd 7:00 PM

$10.00

FREE – Family Nature Exploration Saturdays 10-11am

Ami Voeltz, our Programs Coordinator, has launched a free Family Nature Exploration Saturdays Series from 10-11am . No registration is needed, just show up to explore nature!

FREE – Outdoor Nature Storytime

Lake Elmo Library and Sally Manzara Interpretive Center will be hosting an outdoor nature storytime the third Tuesday of each month from 10:30 to 11:00 AM for April – September.

Summer Camps 2022 – registration now open – only 5 spaces left!

We are offering four different summer day camps for 2022, four days a week Monday-Thursday, June 13, June 20, July 11, and August 8, for 10 campers each week. The topics are different each week, as are the age groups eligible. (4 to 14 years old). Please click Summer Camp Registration tab for more details and to register your child. Please email camps@sminc-lake-elmo.org with any questions you may have.

Free – Outdoor features to see:

Prairie Plant Specimen Walk – visit the individual plants and then go look for them on the prairie

Rain Garden – helps keep runoff from the lake

Messy Play Area – stepping stumps, a canoeful of sand, and a very slow turtle ride

Benches for sitting and relaxing

Picnic tables

Air for your bike tires – fast, free, friendly self service! Just connect, pump, and ride!

The outside water dispenser has been turned on -water your dog, or yourself.

FREE – Regular Buckthorn Removal Days – Second Saturdays at 9:30 AM

May 14th is the next opportunity- please contact George at 651-757-5610 for details. We have the loppers, gloves, and herbicide.

FREE – Sunfish Lake Park Project on iNaturalist

Go to  https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/sunfish-lake-park to view the observations in the Sunfish Lake Park Project, or take pictures and upload them to the Project.

FREE – Scavenger Hunt printouts available

If you are taking a nature walk and would like to print out a pictorial scavenger hunt, Christa has made some, feel free to download and print them, by clicking on the Activities to Download tab above. Or pick one up at the Reception Desk at the nature center.