Get Outside!

The Get Outside! Program focuses on equitable and inclusive access to environmental and outdoor education. The Lussier Family Heritage Center strives to provide nature based programming to youth who may not have access to our parks, natural areas, or environmental education on a regular basis.  Through this program we build long-term relationships with youth through our community center partners. We strives to create a safe space youth of all backgrounds and abilities to explore natural resources through hands-on learning. A main goal of our programming is to introduce youth to local Dane County Parks through positive experiences. Some of our activities include outdoor exploration, habitat and wildlife identification, sustainability, pollution and runoff education, environmental processes, and exposure to recreation opportunities (i.e. snowshoeing, hiking, biking, disc golf, and fishing). 

Would you like to see your community center partner with this program?


Get Outside! Recreation Program Offerings

Choose any or all of the following programs:

A group of kids on bikes getting ready to go

Bike Adventure

Join us for a bike ride along the Lower Yahara River Trail through restored prairies, oak woodlands, past marshes, and over a boardwalk bridge across Lake Waubesa. There will be fun games along the way, a break along Lake Waubesa, and a stop at our tower overlook. This gentle bike ride with minimal hills is fun for all ages and ability levels. 

Age: Kindergarten - 8th grade. Bikes and helmets are provided (training wheels available). 

Youth in a canoe

Intro to Canoeing

Learn how to canoe in our surrounding waterways in this fun intro to canoeing program! Participants will learn how to paddle, properly wear a life vest, canoe safety, and use a canoe. Learn canoe basics and have a fun paddle in this new recreation program led by Lussier Family Heritage Center staff.

Age: 9 years old and up

Three kids in a canoe on Lake Waubesa

Canoeing Adventure

Have you already participated in our Intro to Canoeing program? If so, come join us for another adventure in canoeing! Apply the skills you learned and take a paddle around Lake Waubesa in this exciting water adventure. Learn about what animals and plants may be underneath you while you glide over the water.

Age: 9 years old and up

Young Person carefully taking a fish off a hook

Fishing Adventure

Is your group interested in learning how to fish? This is the program for you. Learn how to cast, bait, and catch fish along the shore or on one of our fishing piers. Staff will assist participants with removing fish and releasing them back into the water. Break up the day with a fun fish-focused game and learn to identify common Wisconsin fish. Fishing equipment is provided.

Age: Kindergarten - 8th grade. This activity is also open to persons with permanent disabilities (learn more about the Jenni & Kyle Preserve). 

Young Person looking for critters in a bucket of water

Aquatic Adventure

Have you ever wondered what is in a healthy lake or pond? Join us as we dive into pond and lake ecology! This program includes a story and a game about healthy aquatic ecosystems, a trip to the nearby lake and pond to discover frogs, dragonflies, snails, water bugs, turtles and more. We will become scientists, collecting water samples and critters, identifying them and determining the health of our waters.

Age: Kindergarten - 8th grade. 

youth standing on a prairie trail looking through binoculars

Prairie Adventure

Come explore the prairie with us! Did you know less than 1% of Wisconsin prairies still exists? Discover why prairie plants are important for our ecosystem and pollinators, including bees, butterflies and birds. Grades 5+ will take part in an owl pellet dissection, Grades K-4 will get to create a fun craft.

Age: Kindergarten - 8th grade. 

Young Person holding black raspberries in a bowl

Animal Survival 

Learn how wild animals have adapted to survive. Through fun, active games, students will learn about wildlife, food chains and discover what animals live not only in our natural areas as well as our own backyards. This program features games, science data collection, a craft, and plenty of fun.

Age: Kindergarten - 8th grade.

Kids taking a hike in the woods

Twigs are for Kids! 

Get ready to explore the world of trees with this fun tree ID program! Enjoy a hike, games, and tree identification and measuring. After this program students will know what to look for when it comes to identifying trees, how to measure them, tree vocabulary, and more. Come learn about the trees that surround you in your parks and at home!

Age: Kindergarten - 8th grade.

Kid looking at something in the grass through a hand lens

CSI: Critter Scene Investigation  

Use you crime scene investigation skills in this animal identification program to discover the wildlife in Wisconsin. Learn about the different habitats they live in, food sources, and lifestyles of the creatures that call Wisconsin home. You may even find a new favorite animal during this interactive program!

Age: Kindergarten - 8th grade.

Kids looking at bugs with a hand microscope

It’s a Bug’s Life!  

There are more species of insects than any other animal in our prairies! Come learn about some of them in this fun insect program. Learn about what makes an insect an insect, how you can find them, and what they look like in this exploratory program. Get hands on experience and learn the importance of insects to our prairie ecosystem.

Age: Kindergarten - 8th grade.

Group of Snowshoers

Snowshoe Adventure

Whether your group is trying snowshoeing for the first time or coming out to practice your skills this fun, snow-stomping adventure is a great way to play in the winter. Join us for a fun tromp through our prairie and woodland trails as our trek leads us down to see a frozen Lake Waubesa. Afterwards, we'll warm up with a cup of cocoa.

Age: 1st- 8th grade. Available December – March, snow dependent.