1 Maple syrup

Whitewater State Park, 10 a.m.-noon and 1-3 p.m. Saturday

This hands-on program, offered at two times, introduces the long history of maple syrup and sugar making, as well as the equipment and procedures. Participants of all ages will tap trees, gather and boil sap, and taste pure maple syrup. Reservations are required. To register, call 507-932-3007, ext. 226. More information: www.mndnr.gov/ptcalendar.

2 Birding trek

Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge, 8-10:30 a.m. Saturday

Join a bird walk on one of the many refuge units during spring migration. Old Cedar Avenue is a great

place to look for migratory ducks, geese, swans and raptors. Birders of all skill levels are welcome on this walk. Bring along your binoculars and favorite

field guide, and dress appropriately for the weather. Led by Craig Mandel, volunteer refuge naturalist.

3 Syrup skills

Fort Snelling State Park, 1-2:30 p.m. Sunday

Learn about the natural history of maple trees and the history of making maple syrup at this "Women in the Parks" outdoor skill-building program. Find out what equipment is required, how to tap trees, and how to make sap into syrup. Maple syrup samples will be offered. More information:

612-279-3550 or mndnr.gov/


4 Planting for Pollinators

Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge, 10-11 a.m. Sunday

Join a native plant expert to learn how you can provide ideal habitat for pollinators by selecting the right plants for the right location. Free resources about the refuge butterfly garden and about pollinator gardening will be available.

Led by Matt Stasica of the Minnesota Waterfowl Association.

More information: 952-854-5900.

5 Cross-country skiing

Hyland Lake Park Reserve, noon-1:30 p.m. Sunday

Learn cross-country skiing basics. From proper equipment fitting, diagonal stride, stopping, turning, and a brief introduction to small hills. For novice skiers and those wanting a review. Cost is $20, or $31 with ski rental. This lesson is for ages 13 and older. More information on all skiing activities in the park district: www.threeriversparks.org.