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Saxon Woods (Kids 12 & Under)

at "Wildman" Steve Brill - Mamaroneck

(79)
Course Details
Price:
$10 32 seats left
Start Date:

Sat, Mar 07, 10:00am - 1:00pm

Next start dates (5)

Location:
Mamaroneck, Westchester County
1800 Mamaroneck Ave.
Btwn Hutchinson Rvr Pkwy & Saxon Wood Rd
White Plains, New York 10605
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Important:
Ticket Price is for Kids only. Accompanying Adult tickets are Sold separately.
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Description
Class Level: All levels
Age Requirements: 7 - 12 years old
Average Class Size: 35

What you'll learn in this kids life skills class:

March 7, 2020

Saxon Woods Park's forested areas, cultivated places, and tailsides are excellent places for late winter foraging, and we'll be very busy with a variety of common, widespread, renewable native and exotic plant species as we explore these habitats.

The sunny borders between woodlands and open areas provide prime habitat for wild herbs and greens. We'll look for sheep sorrel and wood sorrel, with their wonderful lemony flavors, plus goutweed, which tastes like a combination of parsley, celery, and carrots. Hairy bittercress, a common, delicious, overlooked wild mustard, also appears in great abundance in disturbed habitats, and its even more common, invasive relative, garlic mustard, is taking over the forest.

The edge of the woods is also full of burdock, a delicious and healthful taproot, but even more impressive is a sunny hillside, partially protected from mowers by its steepness, that's loaded with wild carrots and common evening primrose, two of the tastiest root vegetables on Earth.

We'll be finding sassafras in the woods, which you can use as a sweet seasoning, or turn into tea or root beer. If you prefer birch beer, no problem — black birch trees grow in the same places, and you can also use them to make tea, jelly, and puddings.

As we end the tour, we'll also pick up northern bayberry leaves in the parking lot. Unrelated to commercial bay leaves, the flavor is similar but better, superb for seasoning soups, grains, and marinades.

April 5, 2020

Saxon Woods Park's forested areas, trail sides, and swamps are excellent places for early spring foraging, and we'll be very busy with a variety of native and exotic plant species as we explore these habitats.

The lawns and sunny borders between woodlands and open areas provide prime habitat for many wild herbs and greens. We'll look for sheep sorrel and wood sorrel, with their wonderful lemony flavors, as well as goutweed, which tastes like parsley, celery, and carrots.

Poor man's pepper, a common, delicious wild mustard, will also appear in great abundance in the disturbed habitats adjacent to the parking lot where the tour begins. So will its even less-known relative, hairy bittercress, which tastes much better than its name implies.

This tour also features edible trees, with black birch, which tastes like wintergreen, for one. In addition to making a delicious tea, you can use it to make birch beer, and to flavor jellies and puddings.

Sassafras is also good for puddings, bean dishes, and desserts, although it's traditionally know as a healthful, tasty herb tea, as well as for making root beer.

This is the season for roots, and we'll be finding burdock, with a delicious and healthful taproot that imparts a potato/artichoke flavor, as well as common evening primrose, which tastes sweet and radishy. Wild carrots, more flavorful and with more texture after cooking than the commercial subspecies, grows here in great abundance as well.

In the woods, we'll hunt for more edible and medicinal herbs and beverages such as ramps, pine needles, and common spicebush twigs. There are even Northern bayberry leaves in the parking lot, much better tasting than the familiar bay leaves.

We may also find some early season mushrooms such as oyster mushrooms, mica caps, and tree ears, if there's been enough heavy rain beforehand. This tour will show you how much is around for foragers in late fall.

May 25, 2020

Saxon Woods Park's forested areas grassy habitats, and swamps are excellent places for mid-spring foraging, and we'll be very busy with a variety of common, widespread, renewable native and exotic plant species as we explore these habitats. This tour will be special, as co-leader Violet Brill will be celebrating her 16th birthday!

The sunny borders between woodlands and the parking lot provide prime habitat for various wild herbs and greens. We'll look for sheep sorrel and wood sorrel, with their wonderful lemony flavors, plus goutweed, which tastes like parsley. Poor man's pepper, a common, delicious wild mustard, also appears in great abundance in sunny habitats, and its even more common invasive relative, garlic mustard, is taking over the forest.

The hillside adjacent to the woods is also full of burdock, a delicious and healthful taproot, and its relative, common thistle. This forbiddingly thorny plant has a delicious, celery-like flower stalk. Simply wear work gloves until you've peeled off the forbidding-looking thorns.

In the woods, we'll hunt for more edible and medicinal herbs and beverages such as piquant-flavored greenbrier leaves and shoots; ramps, the world's best onion species; and flavorful pokeweed shoots. We'll also be looking for root beer-flavored sassafras, wintergreen-flavored black birch, and jewelweed, a preventative for poison ivy and a panacea for insect bites and stings.

For a finale, as we leave the woods, we'll find northern bayberry bushes, with leaves far superior to the unrelated but similarly-flavored bay leaf, growing in the parking lot.

Note:

  • Participants should be dressed for the weather, and be aware of very bad subway service. Trains are often canceled due to track work. 
  • No sandals (there are mosquitoes, thorns and poison ivy). Everyone should have plastic bags for veggies and herbs, paper bags for mushrooms, which spoil in plastic, containers for berries from late spring through fall, water and lunch, a pen to sign in and extra layers when it's cold.
  • Digging implements and pocket knives are optional. 
  • Dogs are permitted. Children are encouraged to attend.
  • There's no smoking whatsoever at any time.
School Notes:
If you can't attend the class you signed up for, please call or email "Wildman" Steve Brill a day before the start of the class. No-call/no-show creates an inconvenience to all participants since we can’t tell if absentees are having transportation issues, and this delays the start of the tour/class.

Kindly note that price posted is our suggested donation only.

Still have questions? Ask the community.

Refund Policy
Participants can cancel the night before an event and get a refund.

Map

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"Wildman" Steve Brill

All classes at this location

Saxon Woods parking lot north of the Hutchinson River Parkway, near the swimming pool

Start Dates (6)
Start Date Time Teacher # Sessions Price
10:00am - 1:00pm "Wildman" Steve Brill 1 $10
10:00am - 1:00pm "Wildman" Steve Brill 1 $20
10:00am - 12:00pm "Wildman" Steve Brill 1 $10
10:00am - 12:00pm "Wildman" Steve Brill 1 $20
10:00am - 12:00pm "Wildman" Steve Brill 1 $10
Start Date Time Teacher # Sessions Price
10:00am - 1:00pm "Wildman" Steve Brill 1 $20

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School: "Wildman" Steve Brill

Foraging expert Steve Brill has shared his foraging wisdom at schools, museums, parks departments, environmental organizations, and with scout troops since 1982. He’s written three books and an app, stars in a DVD and maintains a website.

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Read more about "Wildman" Steve Brill

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