2008 News Stories

The View from the Combine

This fall I have had the opportunity to become familiar with Belwin’s 1957 Allis Chalmers Super 100 combine. I had only ever known it as a gigantic orange machine that I hit my head on while working in the shop; I never envisioned that I would learn to run ...


Belwin becomes Belwin Conservancy

In recognition of all that has changed at Belwin in the last two years, we are pleased to announce that Belwin has changed it’s name to ‘Belwin Conservancy’. After extensive discussions with our members, peers groups and the community at large, we came to the conclusion that, ‘Belwin’ did ...


Director's Message

The other day I was out with the bison. The sky was a crystal blue, but there was a mist that hung just a few feet above the prairie. Sometimes it’s hard for me to get very close to the bison, but on that day, for whatever reason, they ...


Bison & Sustainability

Under a rain-filled sky in late June, Belwin began a new chapter in its story. Over three-hundred people gathered to watch as David Hartwell, the chair of Belwin's board, threw open a trailer door and out bounded 25 bison; the first to roam these prairies in over 150 years ...


Lucy News

One of the things that has made the Lucy Winton Bell Athletic Fields (LWBAF) such a great place are the volunteers that help us make it that way. This year, we got some help from Matt Doneux — age 17 — a Life Scout working toward his rank of Eagle Scout and ...


Belwin Conservancy Acquiring Property to Jump-Start Art & Nature Program

The Belwin Conservancy is thrilled to announce that we are in the process of raising funds to acquire a key property at the northwest portion of the preserve. The 12-acre parcel contains three buildings and is near the area where Valley Creek enters Lake Edith. The Belwin Conservancy has the ...


Bison Update

We have been absolutely blown away by the interest shown in the bison since they arrived at Belwin this past June. We had always conceived of them as an educational tool and had always planned for a visitor’s area, but we were simply not prepared for the interest shown ...


Observatory to be Constructed at Belwin Center

The Belwin Conservancy has recently finalized an agreement with the Minnesota Astronomical Society (MAS) to construct a permanent observatory at Belwin. A domed observatory will be constructed near Belwin Center, and will house the largest refracting telescope in Minnesota. This will offer visitors an unparalleled view of our universe. Images ...


Belwin to Reintroduce Bison to their Prairies

Afton, Minnesota — June 10, 2008 — Bison will soon roam the prairies of Washington County, Minnesota once again. On Saturday, June 28th at noon, Belwin will release a herd of bison onto its property located in Afton and West Lakeland, Minnesota. Bison, long absent from this area, play an essential role ...


Diversity Yields Stability

This is a concept that was drilled into my brain throughout my college days as I was learning to be a naturalist. In my teaching through the years it is a theme I constantly come back to. When I learned this particular idea it was mainly about the natural world ...


Lucy News

The 2008 season is just now getting underway at the Lucy Winton Bell Athletic Fields. We had a wet and snowy start to the season, but we are anticipating another great year. Lucy again anticipates hosting over 1,500 games and 70,000 visits. A complete event schedule for 2008 ...


Director's Message

Recently The Nature Conservancy funded the most comprehensive study thus far on nature recreation. The lead author, Oliver Pergams, assistant professor of biological sciences at the University of Illinois at Chicago, described the results as “almost terrifying”. The study showed that there has been a fundamental and profound shift away ...


Prescribed Prairie Burns

It’s hard to believe that the ground will ever be dry enough to carry a fire. Even so, at Belwin we have been busily preparing for the prescribed burn season this spring. Fire is one of our most effective tools and it takes a lot of planning to do ...


Belwin Plans Prescribed Burns

In the coming weeks Belwin will be conducting several prescribed burns on its property. The exact date and time for these burns cannot be determined in advance. They will be conducted only when both the conditions on the ground and the weather are appropriate. No burns will be conducted after ...