SOUTH BELOIT - Friendship will be at the heart of the Nature at the Confluence's 2019 programming, with the celebration of Winnie the Pooh and all of the bear's friends.
Executive director Therese Oldenburg has planned a kick-off event celebrating National Winnie the Pooh Day from 10-11 a.m. on Saturday at Nature at the Confluence, 306 Dickop St. The free family event is geared towards children ages 4-7 and includes story time, snack, nature craft, free-play time in Pooh's Corner and an optional Winter Walk About at the end. Appropriate outdoor clothes is suggested.
This event is a kick-off to Nature At The Confluence's 2019 Adventures In The Hundred Acre Wood program series. All of the events will be inspired by Winnie the Pooh stories brought to life by author A.A. Milne. Milne's stories, which also featured his son, Christopher Robin. National Winnie the Pooh Day commemorates Milne's birthday on January 18, 1882.
"I'm really looking forward to exposing families to Milne's original stories," Oldenburg said.
Oldenburg said she was inspired to have this programming after seeing the film "Christopher Robin" last year.
She called the film endearing, adding that both children and adults would enjoy the story.
"It's just the gentleness of Pooh, but also the adventures of Christopher Robin and the friendships he builds in the woods," Oldenburg said.
Though she's been focusing on children's programming, Oldenburg said she also is considering adding some adult programming as well.
"Winnie the Pooh crosses all ages," Oldenburg said.
Families will find all kinds of adventures In The Hundred Acre Wood at Nature At The Confluence this year. The theme also will be woven into features on the grounds such as Duffy's Children's Garden's Hundred Acre Wood, The Big Story Tree, Rabbit's Vegetable Garden, Pooh's Thoughtful Spots, Build A House For Eeyore, and a life-sized metal sculpture of Christopher Robin.
Oldenburg said the programs will really kick off this summer starting in June for six weeks, with an emphasis on reading, literacy, healthy lifestyles, stewardship and outdoor activity.
The adventure series will culminate in a free outdoor screening of the newly released "Christopher Robin" movie on Aug. 9, held in partnership with Beloit International Film Festival.
This program is offered at no cost to the community through support from the Colonel Robert H. Morse Foundation.
For more information on the series, visit www.natureattheconfluence.com/pooh or email firstname.lastname@example.org.