Touch of Nature Environmental Center | SIU

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Touch of Nature Environmental Center

SIU's Outdoor Laboratory and Retreat Center

Touch of Nature Environmental Center Main Content

spileTouch of Nature Environmental Center serves Southern Illinois University, the region and the nation as an outdoor laboratory for experiential learning, a field site for research, and a provider of therapeutic recreation, environmental education, adventure education, personal and interpersonal growth experiences and facilities services. Through its four entities,

Adventure Education

Environmental Education

Therapeutic Recreation

Facilities and Services

Touch of Nature strives to create a safe, and fun learning environment for all its guests and participants.  Let's get in touch.  


Feb. 12-13., 13-14: I "Heart" Eco-Mini Camp

I heart eco-mini campEnjoy two sessions of the second annual I “Heart” Eco Mini Camp, February 12-13 and 13-14.  Campers will learn the process of harvesting and making real maple syrup, as well as study winter ecology through outdoor activities. The camp will also feature games, arts and crafts, and evening entertainment, while parents can have some time for themselves over the Valentine’s Day weekend.  I “Heart” Eco Mini Camp is for children ages 7-12.  Registration Deadline is 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, February 9.  Call 618/453-1121 to register.  More information.  

March 14-18: Global Adventure Camp

2016 Global Adventure CampJoin Culture in the Community from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., March 14-18 for Global Adventure Camp.  Campers will explore different cultures from around the globe through fun, hands-on activities and projects.  For Grades K-5.  More information.

March 18-20: Spring Equinox Yoga Retreat

Welcome the start of spring with a weekend yoga retreat on the beautiful grounds of SIU’s Touch of Nature.  Activities include four yoga and meditation sessions, a drum circle, a fire circle, an owl prowl, interpretive hikes and much more.  Participants will also enjoy five vegetarian gluten-free meals with an available vegan option.  Dynamic alignment-based Hatha yoga.  Men, women and beginners welcome.  More information.

Yoga is mixed level.  

Feb. 27-28: Maple Syrup Festival & Pancake Breakfast

Florida Everglades National ParkLearn the process of making maple syrup from the woods to the kitchen.   The event includes maple syrup demonstrations, interpretive hikes, blacksmith, hide tanning, silk embroidery, furniture making, and local artisans and vendors.  A home-cooked pancake breakfast served with harvested maple syrup will be served both days.  RSVP for the pancake breakfast at 618/453-1121 or Online here.  

March 12-20: Veteran Adventures spring break trips

Veteran Adventures Colorado MountaineeringAttention area veterans.  Spend spring break climbing the Colorado Rockies or go backpacking along Southern Illinnois's River-to-River Trail.  Two great opportunities for veterans to enjoy some camaraderie and the trip of a ifetime.  For more information and to register, visit Veteran Adventures.

Register now for two spring break Outdoor Adventures

Moab, Utah archSpend spring break in Moab, Utah or hike along the Florida National Scenic Trail.  Outdoor Adeventures, in collaboration with Touch of Nature and SIU Recreational Sports and Services present two very affordable spring break excursions guaranteed to be the high point of your school year.  All are welcome.  For questions, contact
Register for Moab, Utah here.
Register for Florida here.
Or call Touch of Nature at 618/453-1121.

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