Elmhurst Great Western Prairie

The Elmhurst Great Western Prairie is located within Wild Meadows Trace just north of the Prairie Path between Spring Road and Salt Creek. This area is the oldest living environment in Elmhurst. Left by chance, the existence of the prairie adds a very special ecological dimension to the community. Learn more about the history and preservation of the prairie.


Help restore a part of our past to its former beauty

Volunteer dates are usually the third Saturday of each month (plus an extra in June), typically March through November, 9 a.m.-Noon. In addition, we may add a few special work days for larger groups (schools, service organizations, corporate projects) wanting to do service projects: 

Volunteers meet on the west side of Berkley Avenue at the Illinois Prairie Path (Prairie Path Lane). That is three blocks south of St. Charles Road, four blocks west of Spring Road and six blocks east of Rt. 83 (view map). On volunteer days, you might be working anywhere in the mile long stretch between Spring Road to the east and Salt Creek to the west, but the bench at the halfway point at Berkley Ave is the home base and parking is easy there. Always fun and a full body workout, and more worthwhile than a couple hours at the gym!

Visit the Elmhurst Great Western Prairie Facebook Page.

Upcoming 2022 Dates:

  • September 17
  • October 15
  • November 15

Volunteer Tips

  • Volunteers should wear durable work clothes: Long sleeved shirt, long jeans, closed-toed shoes (boots are best), and a hat. If you have work gloves, please bring those as well, but we can provide. You will get dirty and might find  a few seed passengers attached to your clothes.
  • Sunscreen and mosquito repellent are advised depending on the season. There is no drinking water on site, so please bring some refreshment. 
  • Neighboring Grace Bible Church has kindly offered us use of their restrooms. 
  • Most of our work involves cutting brush, so if you have loppers, bring them along. No power tools are permitted.
  • Hazards to be aware of include: Thorns and sharp-edged plants, trip hazards, sun exposure. There are currently no known poison ivy or ticks in the EGWP, but the possibility of exposure cannot be ruled out.
  • Children over 12 years old can be very helpful, but will require direct supervision by their sponsoring organization. Children under 12 will require one-on-one supervision during work days.
  • Groups of more than four new volunteers are encourage to contact Eric Keeley (see below).  Our regular volunteers can happily arrange special volunteer work days and educational walks on days other than our usual monthly dates for corporate, school and community groups. 

Questions

Michelle Karabetsos (Elmhurst Park District Horticulturalist) at mkarabetsos [at] epd [dot] org or (630) 993-8909              
Eric Keeley (EGWP Steward Volunteer) at keeley [dot] eric [at] gmail [dot] com or (630) 336-1852
Keith Olson (EGWP Steward Volunteer) at keitholson [at] usa [dot] net or (630) 834-7357

Events & Activities: 
  • Adopt-A-Park