Northerly Island: Free Polar Adventure Day.
Celebrate the Annual Polar Adventure Days and explore the outdoors at Northerly Island during the winter.
When: Saturday, February 23, 2019 Time: 12:00 PM – 04:00 PM Always call or check the CPD website to confirm. Event subject to change without notice.
Where: Northerly Island, 1521 S. Linn White Dr. (312) 745-2910 (Fieldhouse) (312)540-2668 312-742-PLAY (7529). Limited parking is available for $3, cash only, during Polar Adventure Days. Activities are subject to change. Visit their Facebook page.
Admission: FREE; Parking is $3 cash per car for the event day.
Take part in the following activities at Polar Adventure Days:
Explore Northerly Island and come face-to-face with live animals, engage in winter activities, and create nature-inspired crafts. See the full list of activities below. Dress for the weather as events take place both outdoors and inside of the Visitor Center.
-Tour the Northerly Island Natural Area during Winter
-See Siberian huskies, wolves, and other live animals
-Encounter birds of prey from Flint Creek Wildlife Rehabilitation
-Explore the island on snowshoes (if there’s snow)
-Make nature-inspired winter crafts
-Sip hot cocoa while strolling across the prairie
-Enjoy a treat at the SAFE + FAIR Healthy Snack Station
Raffle prizes and giveaways provided by Coca-Cola.
Northerly Island Trail Partial Closing – The eastern portion of the Northerly Island trail closed due to trail erosion. The western portion of the trail will remain open.
About Northerly Island
Northerly Island is a 91- acre peninsula that juts into Lake Michigan at the heart of the Museum Campus. It is located just south of the Adler Planetarium and east of Soldier Field. The majority of this space is dedicated to nature. The nature area at Northerly Island features beautiful strolling paths, casual play areas and a spectacular view of the Chicago skyline. It is also home to some of the best fishing in Chicago.
The southern 40-acres of Northerly Island have been closed for the last couple years due to a U.S. Army Corps. of Engineers improvement project. Now they’re reopened.
Improvements include more camping areas, expanded wetlands and additional trails and boardwalks. Per Blair Kamin, “The park’s cost was covered by $6.3 million in federal funds and $3.4 million from the Chicago Park District. The Park District’s share was paid for by revenue from a concert pavilion on the northern half of the island, officials said.”
- Modified landscape and grading plan to accommodate more camping areas
- The sight lines will correlate with the celestial calendar, aligning the visitor experience with constellations overhead.
- The increase in elevation of the hills will prevent bird strikes at McCormick Place. Birds need prominent topography as a visual cue to compel them to land and avoid crashing into structures such as large buildings.
- A deeper wetland (pond) that will reduce broad mud flats and help develop habitat.
- This will establish a habitat for the endangered mud-puppy salamander.
- Part of the installation will include educational and awareness video display of underwater habitat with a live feed to the Shedd Aquarium.
- The pond will also serve as an estuary non game species of fish. The deeper wetland will result in a habitat that is more likely to be wet during dry periods through its hydraulic connection to Lake Michigan. This creates a more consistently wet habitat for birds travelling along the migratory flyway that need to rest at Northerly Island.
- Additional trails, boardwalks, and a bridge at the south end.
- Public access will be increased to the wetland area, hills, camping grounds, and other locations of the park site.
- The formalized access paths will allow the public to interact with landscape and wildlife without disturbing the mesic prairie and wetland plantings.
- The paths and boardwalks will also enhance ADA accessibility. The installation of a bridge at the south end of the park that will complete the path system.