Group Schedules‎ > ‎

SWALLOWTAILS

Please look over the schedule upon registration and give us as much advance notice as possible if there are any conflicts for your child attending. Last minute requests often cannot be met.

In response to parent feedback, we did our best to set an entire year of Explorers Club outings months earlier than previous years. Please know that these dates are subject to change due to inevitable circumstances. We will update you if any dates do change!

Be sure to use (and print if needed) the Be Prepared Checklist when getting ready for each Explorers Club outing. Wild Whatcom Mottos guide much of our program so check them out. Many families find them a useful resource to print and refer to.

Mentor Contact Info:

Congratulations! The Swallowtails are about to embark on their seventh and final season of Explorers Club. Please note the graduation dates (May 10-12, 2019) for this upcoming season and mark it on your family's calendar. We would love it if every explorer was able to attend this special weekend! Many thanks in advance for your family's commitment to the Swallowtails and their final season of Explorer's Club. 


Swallowtails 2018-19 Schedule 

Outing #1: Saturday, September 15, 2018: 9:00-4:00 PM
SKILLS: HIKE to Pine and Cedar
For our first outing, the group will hike one of Bellingham's most iconic trails, Pine and Cedar Lake. On this day, we will stretch our legs for a brisk autumn hike! We'll review the 10 Essentials of hiking, practice our navigation skills, and catch up after a long summer away from the group. We encourage each explorer to pack their own bags for this day and in doing so, include as many of the 10 Essentials as they think they'll need. We have lots of extra gear at the Wild Whatcom office, so let us know if you'd like to borrow anything specific. This is a seven-hour outing, so extra H2O and snacks are crucial.

Driving Directions: Drop off and pick up are at the Pine and Cedar Lakes Trailhead. From I-5, take exit 250 for Old Fairhaven Pkwy and turn west onto Old Fairhaven Pkwy. Follow Old Fairhaven Parkway toward Fairhaven and turn left on 12th St./Chuckanut Drive. Drive 1.2 miles south on Chuckanut Drive. Veer left onto Old Samish Rd and continue for about 1.9 miles to the trailhead parking area on the right. 

Outing #2: Saturday, October 13, 2018: 10:00-3:00 PM 
SKILLS: Medicinal Plants in the 100 Acre Woods
At the Swallowtails request, we will be revisiting the Art of Medicinal Plants on this autumn outing. Plants give us many gifts, providing food, clothing, tools, and medicine. As we ramble and roam throughout this south side forest learning lab, we'll review some of the powers of plants to heal (& harm). Part of our time will be spent making a simple, yet ancient skin salve called the Balm of Gilead. We will also have the option of making our own sage smudge sticks, forest tea, and collecting rosehips for honey. 

Directions: From I-5, take the Fairhaven Parkway exit. Go left (south) on 24th (Fairhaven Veterinary Hospital on right). Follow this road for the equivalent of 2-3 blocks until you come to Willis St. (long uphill driveway on left, trailhead on right). Pull to the right side of the road just before Willis and look for mentors waiting and waving.

Outing #3: Sunday, November 11, 2018: 10:00-3:00 PM
EXPLORATION/SKILLS: Powers of Observation at Fairhaven Park
On this skills' day, we'll explore the importance of observation and the myriad ways we can deepen our awareness of ourselves, one another, our bodies, and the natural world. Guiding questions will help us delve into our culture's emphasis on going and doing rather than presence and being; what emerges when we pause to notice; how technology impacts opportunities for observation; how people in the past practiced observation and what skills that strengthened. Activities will include a self-awareness questionnaire and guided meditation (intrapersonal awareness); active listening exercises (interpersonal awareness); observing nature, creating art (nature awareness); yoga and other activities (body awareness).

Directions: Meet at Fairhaven Park. Take Chuckanut Drive South for approximately 0.1 miles. Take a left into Fairhaven Park. We'll meet by the upper picnic shelter where you'll see mentors waiting and waving!

Outing #4: Saturday, January 12, 2019: 12:30-4:30 PM
SKILLS/SERVICE: Mollywood Avian Sanctuary
This wonderful group has decided to do one of their final service projects at Mollywood Avian Sanctuary. We'll spend our day cleaning the cages of hundreds (!) of exotic birds and assisting Betsy, the wonderful coordinator of Mollywood, with whatever she needs. Girls should dress in clothes that they don't mind getting dirty (and must wear long pants and long sleeves), bring work gloves, and ear plugs if you have them! This is a loud one!

Directions: Drop off and pick up at Cascades Montessori Middle School, 2710 McKenzie Ave. 

Outing #5: Saturday, February 23, 2019: 1:00-7:00 pm
EXPLORATION: Create Your Own Adventure to Teddy Bear Cove
As the group wishes, we'll spend our day adventuring to Teddy Bear Cove, enjoying the sunset and a nighttime walk, and bake cookies over a camp stove. Be prepared for darkness with a headlamp (with working batteries!) or flashlight, plenty of warm layers, and anything that the group has asked you to bring! 

Directions: Drop off and pick up at Cascades Montessori Middle School, 2710 McKenzie Ave. 

Outing #6: Saturday, April 27, 2019: 12:30-5:00 PM **Rescheduled from Saturday, March 30th**
SERVICE: Group Lunch and Bellingham Community Meals
For years, the Swallies have been waiting to do service with Bellingham Community Meals Project. On this day, we'll meet at the Wild Whatcom office for a  big lunch and conversation about what to expect for the day. Then we'll walk down Cornwall and meet up with fellow volunteers at the Assumption gym, where the monthly Bellingham Community meal will be served. We'll help set the meal up, serve up some delicious food, and make connections with members of the Bellingham community. 

Directions: ***Please note that pick up and drop off locations are different.*** Drop off will be at Wild Whatcom's office, 1015 Girard St, Bellingham, WA 98225. Look for a mentor standing and waving outside. Pick up will be the Assumption Gym, 2116 Cornwall Ave, Bellingham.

Outing #7: 5:00 PM Friday, May 10 - 4:00 PM Sunday, May 12
GRADUATION: Final Explorers Club Gathering
Wonderful Swallies, the time has come for the parting of ways. The Swallowtails' Graduation is scheduled for Friday, May 10th- Sunday, May 12th at Utopia Tree Farm. We'll plan for a Friday afternoon departure at 5:00 PM from Cascades Montessori Middle School. The bulk of the weekend is largely dependent on what the girls choose to do, but we plan on spending plenty of time on reflection, acknowledgment, and merry-making. The weekend will conclude with a graduation ceremony that will include a slideshow, potluck, and presentation from the explorers and mentors. The ceremony will begin at 1:30 PM, so we ask families to arrive between 1:00-1:15 PM to settle in.
Graduation weekend will take place at Utopia Tree Farm (see google maps link here) outside of Sedro-Woolley (about 45 minutes from Bellingham). This location is home to a passion project of one of our generous Wild Whatcom families. The farm is focused on the sustainable growth and harvest of Big Leaf Maple for the purpose of creating handcrafted musical instruments. Utopia is a perfect name for the property as it is full of swamps, small growing trees, wide open fields, creeks and rivers, lovely trails to explore, and an indoor kitchen/dining/bathroom space. We feel very lucky to be able to explore and connect in this place for our weekend!
Mentors will be sending out emails at the end of March detailing a suggested packing list, To-Do's for families, and other necessary info. If you have any questions regarding graduation weekend, please get in contact with the Swallies' mentors.

Driving Directions: Utopia Tree Farm at 8600 B D Minkler Rd, Sedro-Woolley, WA, 98284. Hop on I-5 going South for 20 miles. Take exit 232/Cook Rd. Turn Left onto Cook Rd. At the traffic circle, take the 2nd exit to stay on Cook Rd and at the next traffic circle, take the 2nd exit onto Borseth Rd. Continue onto Moore St and at the traffic circle, continue straight onto Moore St/ WA 20 E for 5.5 miles. Turn Right onto Hoehn Rd, follow for 1 mile. Turn left onto Utopia Rd and Utopia Rd turns left and become B D Minkler Rd. B D Minkler Rd dead ends at Utopia Farm, where you will see the Wild Whatcom bus, Explorers, and mentors waiting and waving! Click here for the Google Map location.