Nova Scotia Celebration of Nature – 2019 at Liscombe Lodge


Friday, May 24, 2019 - Sunday, May 26, 2019
12:00 am


The 2019 Celebration of Nature is taking place on the Eastern Shore, at Liscombe Lodge from May 24-26. It is a full weekend of social, learning and outdoor experiences to nearby natural areas. During the weekend we run concurrent and combined adult and youth programming so we can have some time apart and some time together as a family.

An exciting youth program lined up with Gary Schneider from Macphail Woods and Sean Haughian, Curator of Botany at the Museum of Natural History leading activities. Lots of games, hikes and a boat trip along the St. Mary’s River. Programming is designed for 7-12 year olds – a great opportunity for families to spend a weekend away learning about nature and enjoying field trips to amazing natural areas!

“Lichens: can I pick/eat/squish/crumble/throw/poke them?”      Introductory show & tell with discussion about basic types of lichen, what they do, what they are followed by a lichen hunt. Sean Haughian (Curator of Botany NS Museum Natural History)
“Growing Native Plants – what everyone can do to help Nature”.  We’ll look at what species are missing from our forests and how plantings will help improve diversity and wildlife habitat.  Then we’ll look at collecting seed cutting material, and how to grow trees, shrubs and wildflowers.  We’ll also look at safe collecting and transplanting methods that do no harm to forests.  All this, while having fun in the forests! Gary Schneider (Coordinator Macphail Woods)


For this year, booking accommodation needs to be done separately from Registration for the conference. It is your responsibility to contact the lodge directly to reserve rooms. Liscombe Lodge is already accepting bookings (credit card required). Reservations can be booked by calling 1-902-779-2307 or (toll-free) 1-800-665-6343

The following are the rooms being held for those who identify themselves as attending this Nature NS event:
– 15 Lodge rooms (2 double beds/room; a few could have only one queen bed), which will cost about $265 for two nights (taxes included);
– 20 cottage rooms (4 separate-entry rooms with 2 double beds surround one common room; entry to it is accessed by a keyed door from each room), which will cost about $265 for two nights (taxes included);
– 10 Chalets Riverside (various floor plans, living room area with wood stove, and bedroom area with one double or queen bed), which will cost about $311 for two nights (taxes included).

The maximum number of persons/room is 4. There is no extra charge for children <17.

Note that the costs for meals and registration will be handled by Nature NS. The Registration brochure should be available mid-March on their website


We’re pleased to welcome some very accomplished presenters and trip leaders who can help us better understand the natural history of the area and the challenges to it. And of course, we look forward to opportunities just to schmooze, renew old acquaintances, and make new ones.

Presentations (adult)

Gary Schneider, director Macphail Woods —How a small project makes a big difference: the evolution of Macphail Woods Ecological Forestry Project
Dave Ireland, former Managing Director of The ROM —Marketing nature and the rise of citizen scientists
Sean Haughian, curator of botany, NS Museum of Natural History— Lichens in Nova Scotia; diversity, conservation and current research



Field Trips (combined adult and youth)

Early morning birding (before breakfast)
Fascinating Floodplain Forests, St Marys River NSNT property—led by Karen McKendry, wilderness outreach coordinator, Ecology Action Centre*
Drawing in Nature, an outdoor sketching workshop (at Liscombe Lodge)—with Alice Reed, artist (cap 12, 3 h, min age 10 accompanied by adult)
Coastal Barrens Hike—led by David Patriquin, Wild Flora Society
Mayflower Trail at Liscombe Lodge — Rick Ballard, HFN
Self guided opportunities: trails in Liscombe area, canoeing/kayaking, St Marys River
Stargazing—with the astronomers (Larry & Pat) (evening)
Owl Prowl —with Bob Bancroft & Donna Crossland (evening)


Early morning birding (before breakfast)
Fascinating Floodplain Forests—led by Karen McKendry, wilderness outreach coordinator, Ecology Action Centre*
Otter Ponds Demo Forest tour: ecologically healthy forest practices—leader TBA
Natural History of Taylor Head Provincial Park—led by Peter Oickle, Friends of Taylor Head Park (max 15)
Birding at Taylor Head Provincial Park—led by Jim Cameron, Friends of Taylor Head Park (max 15)
Rehabilitating the Land for Wildlife, Pomquet—led by Bob Bancroft
Self guided opportunities: trails in Liscombe area, canoeing/kayaking, St Marys River


*Fascinating Floodplain Forests—Discover the amazing species and ecology of the floodplain forests of the St Marys River. On this 3-hour guided hike naturalist Karen McKendry will share with you the recent history of the property and the story of its protection, and will introduce to you the community of plants and creatures that are bringing this woodland back to its former glory. The hike will be moderate in difficulty in that it is along semi-maintained trails and mostly level ground.  You must pre-register to join this hike with Robin at The location is about a 30-minute drive from Liscombe Lodge (toward Antigonish). The participant cap is 25 people. (If registration reaches 25 very quickly, Karen will work with NSNT to see if we can plan two hikes.)


More details and all the agendas and registration forms (as of march) can be found on Nature Nova Scotia website at:

More Details