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Nature programs are presented in the Clarion Free Library on the second Wednesday of the months, September through December, and March through June. Programs begin at 6:30 p.m. after a few announcements.

 The programs are free and open to the public. Please observe any current CDC precautions for Covid. 

Beginners' Guide to Mushroom Foraging
with Esperanzo (Espo) Wilcox
March 8, 2023
     Esperanzo (Espo) Wilcox is the founder of PA Mushroom Company, which is a spore to store gourmet and medicinal mushroom cultivation 
operation based in Clarion, PA.
     Prior to cultivating mushrooms, Espo acquired a Wild Mushroom Safety Certification and foraged commercially.  
     During the "Beginners Guide to Foraging" program, Espo will share information about when, where, and how to forage for wild mushrooms. Key highlights of the program will include notable literature, preparation and foraging tools, tree identification, and collection and preservation techniques.  
     This program is an essential building block for beginners and experienced foragers alike. 

The Beloved and Charismatic Bluebird
 Charlie (Charmaine) Borza and Steve Szuch
April 12, 2023
     Charlie and Steve have been landowners in Clarion County since 1998. They started with 1 bluebird nest box 25 years ago and now they monitor 50!

     Charlie and Steve will share their personal experiences and lessons that they've learned in caring for bluebirds. Several models of bluebird houses and predator guards will be on display.

     They'll also bring an example of a weekly monitor sheet  and copies of the quarterly newsletter "Bluebird Trails and Tales" for the audience. Charlie says that despite her extensive experience, she always learns something new from this newsletter of the Bluebird Society of Pennsylvania. 

Claudine Lamothe.jpg

Female and male bluebirds. Photo by Claudine Lamothe. 


Charlie Borza selfie with one of her bluebird houses. 

Lori and Dave Kwasnick

Amazing All Around You:

The Not-So Common Lives of Common Birds


Dave and Lori Kwasnick

May 10, 2023

    From pigeons with the ability to see the Earth's magnetic field to hummingbirds that fly across the Gulf of Mexico in a single day, there's so much that's extraordinary about so-called "ordinary" birds. Join Dave and Lori Kwasnick from Slippery Rock's The Birdwatchers Store as they explore the astonishing hidden abilities of some of our best known avian companions. 

      Dave and Lori have owned The Birdwatchers Store in Slippery Rock for 5 years. The store is located in a charming 1844 school house surrounded by a 4-acre Audubon-certified wildlife sanctuary. The store is a haven for birds, and for bird lovers, too. It’s filled with bird feeders, nest boxes, binoculars and scopes, gift items, bird seed, and bird and nature books for adults and kids. It's well worth the occasional drive just to be there, let alone have such a great selection for shopping.   


Vulture: The Private Life of an Unloved Bird
with Katie Fallon
June 14, 2023


     Katie Fallon is the author of Vulture: The Private Life of an Unloved Bird (2020) and Cerulean Blues: A Personal Search for a Vanishing Songbird (2011). 


     Her essays and articles have been published widely in journals, magazines, anthologies, and collections. She writes the column WINGBEATS for the Bird Watcher's Digest. 


     She has also co-authored two children's books -- Look, See the Bird! (2017) and Look, See the Farm!



    Katie co-founded and is now the Executive Director of the Avian Conservation Center of Appalachia, a nonprofit organization dedicated to conserving wild birds through research, education, and rehabilitation.

     More information about Katie's involvements and her many accomplishments can be found on her website 

     Please bring your family and friends to this enjoyable program with Katie. After hearing Katie's presentation, you will likely never look at a vulture in the same way again!


       Please note! This program will not be held at the Clarion Free Library as usual. It will be held at Auditorium 122, Science and Technology Center PennWest Clarion, Greenville Avenue, Clarion. Park in Lot 11 across the street.  




Katie Fallon, one of the founders of the Avian Conservation Center of Appalachia. Photo from her website 

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