Fantastic Fungi!

October 12 9:00 – 4:30

 Cost: $35 ( Additional Cost: $16 if you need the Field Guide to North American Mushrooms)

Lunch is included

Fungi are often considered to be mysterious and fearsome creatures. What are they really, and how do they play critical roles in natural ecosystems? What are some of the cutting-edge applications of fungi to produce new technologies? Learn basic lab exercises that you can do in your classroom, and go into the field to learn about the major groups of fungi and how to collect and identify mushrooms. Your local woods and fields will never look the same once you can see the place of fungi and their allies.

This class will use a field guide as its text: Gary H. Lincoff. National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Mushrooms. Edition: 1998. Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf

Facilitator: Martha Bishop

Martha is on the Board of the Ohio Mushroom Society, Instructor of Biology of Fungi at Ohio University


Crane Hollow BioDiversity Inventory

November 16 9:00 – 4:30

Cost: $35 Lunch is included

This workshop will focus on the comprehensive biological inventory (ATBI) of Crane Hollow State Nature Preserve that Gary and Holly have been conducting for the past 17 years. Gain an appreciation of the incredible biological diversity that abound all around us. Learn about the intricate web of ecological connections that is the core of this whole study. They will demonstrate collecting methods; discuss specimen preservation, identification, and documentation. Be prepared for a wide-ranging and informative day learning about a number of amazing Ohio species and their exciting, interconnected lives.

Facilitators: Gary and Holly Coovert

Gary and Holly both worked at the Dayton Museum of Natural History (aka Boonshoft) for over 30 years. Holly was an educator and Gary was the Curator of Biology. In mid-2002 they embarked on a comprehensive All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory for Crane Hollow, which they still are intensively working on during their retirement. Gary, with Holly’s assistance and scientific illustrations, has published monographs on hover flies, Ohio Ants, and a group of marine snails (marginellas).


World of Seven Billion

January 11 9:00 – 4:30

 Cost: $35 Lunch is included

During this class, discuss the ways that population, resources, and the environment are interrelated. Amazing, hands-on materials from Population Connection, will equip you with age appropriate activities related to your subject area. Population Connection (formerly ZPG), founded in 1968, is the largest grassroots population organization. Since 1975, the program has developed age-appropriate curricula to complement students’ science and social science instruction about human population trends and their impacts on natural resources, environmental quality and human well-being. With an emphasis on hands-on learning and balanced discussion of different viewpoints, the educational activities are well suited for a cooperative learning environment and are ready to use. An interactive timeline and video provide additional knowledge. This nationally recognized curriculum is aligned to National Standards and can be use cross-curriculum. A great learning opportunity for adults, environmental educators, naturalists, and teachers. Each participant will receive access to the activities and resources.

Facilitator: Cathy Knoop

Cathy’s Master’s degree focused on how environment impacts learning. She is a retired science teacher, consultant for CISV National & International and has been a trainer for Population Education for over 12 years.


Winter – A Great Time to Be Outside!

February 8 9:00 – 4:30

Cost: $35 Lunch is included

This workshop will include winter tree identification, mammal tracking, signs in winter, and variousorganisms’ adaptations that make survival in winter possible. Using a few human survival strategies for winter, participants will learn how to demonstrate concepts like convection, friction, and insulation to their students.

Facilitator: Joe Brehm


The Birds Around Us – Bird Identification and Birding

March 14 9:00 – 4:40

 Cost: $35 Lunch is included

Everywhere we look we are likely to see a bird. Sometimes we notice them, other times they are just “specs of motion” that pass by us in our day to day lives. Birds are a great indicators of habitat type and ecological health and it is easy to learn 100 species of Ohio’s birds. In this workshop we will focus on the keys to bird identification, habitats to find birds, backyard birds and some of the species of birds one is likely to encounter with a little bit of effort. After some in-class discussion, we will take a field trip to local bird hotspots to view various species of birds. Hopefully this workshop will make you want to stop and notice what that “spec of motion” was that just flew by you.

 Facilitator: John Watts

John has over 35 years of birdwatching and natural history experience in Ohio. He has restored and managed thousands of acres of natural areas to create habitat for birds such as wetland and grassland that support a number of Ohio’s state listed species of birds. Along with Paul Knoop Jr. and Gary Coovert, John co-authored The Birds of Hocking County Ohio. He enjoys all aspects of nature photography and will share some of his bird photos during the workshop.

Hidden Treasures of the Edge

Friday, April 24 (7:00PM) – Sunday April 26th (Noon)

 Cost: $110 includes lodging and meals

Spend the weekend exploring the hidden treasures of the 20,000 acre Richard and Lucile Durrell Edge of Appalachia Preserve System. One of the most biologically diverse places in Ohio, the Edge encompasses six different bedrock types, a wide variety of habitats and tremendous diversity in plant and animal life. Some of the rarest animals in Ohio are found on the Edge as well as a host of rare plant species. Spring is an opportune time to see much of what the Edge has to offer. Spring ephemerals, cliffs and rock outcrops, migrating warblers and emerging reptiles and amphibians make this time of year particularly exciting. The Edge of Appalachia Preserve System runs along the edge of the Allegheny Plateau and lies wholly in the rugged, unglaciated portion of south-central Ohio. Elevations can change several hundred feet and the terrain is often rocky and muddy. This class will take place on unimproved dirt trails and off-trail. Participants need to be in good physical condition, able to navigate hills, and off-trail, possibly slippery conditions.  Overnight and meals for this class will be in the “comfortably rustic” Rieveschl Chalet.

Facilitators: Paul and Cathy Knoop, Robyn Wright-Strauss

Paul is retired educator/naturalist from Aullwood Audubon Center & Farm and Cathy is a retired elementary science teacher. Robyn is the Chief Naturalist for Cincinnati Museum Center and the Edge of Appalachia Preserve System.


Participants may register for each class separately or for all desired classes (until each class registration quota is met). Deadline dates indicate when classes will be canceled due to low enrollment and registration is closed. The indicated workshop fee is payable to Camp Oty’ Okwa and should be included with your registration.

Total Cost for Course with Graduate Credit is an additional $180:

Registration for graduate credit will be completed the first day of class. Tuition is $180 per credit hour and can be paid by check or credit card. Checks should be made out to Ashland University.

For additional information:

Cathy Knoop 740-603-3911 or

Joe Brehm 740-767-2225 (work) or 614-886-5668 (cell) or

Mail registration form, fee and money for books to:

Jen Somerville, Camp Oty’Okwa, 27799 Purcell Road, S. Bloomingville, OH 43152