Join us as we welcome in the fall season at Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge.
Our annual Fall Festival is a day-long celebration with lots of activities for kids and adults, ample parking, and free hot dogs on the grill for lunch.
- Come for river seining and check out some of the critters that live in the Passaic River.
- Try your hand at target archery or our hoverball shooting gallery.
- Climb aboard the Refuge’s really big equipment and check the view.
- Build a bluebird nest box to take home.
- Join us for a guided nature walk on the Bockoven Trail.
- Check out the live refuge critters — turtles, snakes, frogs — and fish!
- Learn about our innovative Head-Start program for turtles and see the wood turtle hatchlings.
- Stop by and visit our partners — The Raptor Trust, NJ Audubon Society, Native Plant Society of NJ, North American Butterfly Association, the Passaic River Institute, Great Swamp Watershed Association, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Customs Officers, NJ Division of Fish and Wildlife, and our urban partner — Groundwork Elizabeth.
- 2017 Photo Contest winners will be announced at 11:30 am.
This year we’re celebrating the Water! Start the day with our Wetlands Challenge — fill in the blanks and collect your prize. Then tour the WOW Express — our new Watershed on Wheels exhibit and learn all about the importance and value of watersheds — like our own Great Swamp.
Fall is a fabulous time to visit Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge. Join us to kick off the fall season.
18th Annual Fall Festival
Helen C. Fenske Visitor Center
32 Pleasant Plains Road, Harding Township, NJ
10:00 am to 3:30 pm, rain or shine
Commemorative Brick Campaign Relaunch
Friends of Great Swamp NWR is bringing back our commemorative brick campaign for a limited time. You can purchase a commemorative brick to be placed in the patio at the Helen C. Fenske Visitor Center through December 31, 2017. Your donation will help enrich and expand visitor experiences at Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge.
A lot has happened since 2009 when the Friends first launched a brick fundraising campaign. The Visitor Center is now open seven days a week welcoming thousands of visitors each year. School groups come to explore nature and learn about the natural world. There are additional native plant gardens, purple martin gourd arrays, and three trails for visitors. It’s a vibrant, educational, and exciting place to visit.
Bricks on the patio memorialize loved ones, honor friends and family, or express donors’ commitments to nature and the Refuge. All proceeds from brick purchases fund initiatives at Great Swamp NWR.
Download a copy of the Brick Order Form. Make checks payable to Friends of Great Swamp NWR and mail your check and form(s) to the Friends of Great Swamp NWR, 32 Pleasant Plains Road, Basking Ridge, NJ 07920. Credit card payments are accepted at the Friends Nature Shop in the Helen C. Fenske Visitor Center, open: Monday – Wednesday, 10:00 to 1:00; Thursday – Friday, 1:00 to 4:00; Saturday – Sunday, 10:00 to 4:00.
A commemorative brick is your last legacy and a generous and meaningful donation to Friends of Great Swamp NWR. For more information, email email@example.com.
Thank you to all the photographers who have submitted photos for the Friends Refuge Photo Contest. We received many spectacular and interesting photos. Winners will be announced at the annual Fall Festival on Saturday, September 16, at the Helen C. Fenske Visitor Center. It’s a fun day of activities, exhibits, crafts for kids, and free hot dogs on the grill. Join us to welcome in the fall season.