Shirley Heinze Land Trust preserves and protects natural lands and waters in northwestern Indiana, engaging people in nature and conservation.
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Preserve
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Restore
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Engage

Since 1981, Shirley Heinze Land Trust has been dedicated to the preservation and restoration of significant natural areas throughout northwestern Indiana. Today, more than 2,800 acres across Lake, Porter, LaPorte, St. Joseph, and Marshall counties are permanently protected, and most of our nature preserves are open to the public to explore and enjoy. We invite you to explore our upcoming events, volunteer opportunities and ways to donate, and see how you can help us protect northwestern Indiana’s natural areas, bringing people and nature a little closer in the process.
Featured Events
Bringing Nature Home Award
The Bringing Nature Home Award recognizes the efforts of those who are creating healthier habitats for pollinators, wildlife, and people.

Submit your native plant garden for the Bringing Nature Home Award today!

The Bringing Nature Home Award recognizes the efforts of those who are creating healthier habitats for pollinators, wildlife, and people.

Submit your native plant garden for the Bringing Nature Home Award today!

Bringing Nature Home Award
Applications Due August 20th

Bringing Nature Home Award
Applications Due August 20th

Nature in the Arts
Shirley Heinze is hosting free, public, family-friendly arts events in 2022!

Take a look at all of the events we're hosting (left), and visit the Nature in the Arts page to see our upcoming virtual events.

We hope to see you this summer!

Shirley Heinze is hosting free, public, family-friendly arts events in 2022!

Nature in the Arts

events calendar

Shirley Heinze is hosting free, public, family-friendly arts events in 2022!

Take a look at all of the events we're hosting (left), and visit the Nature in the Arts page to see our upcoming virtual events.

Take a look at all of the events we're hosting (above), and visit the Nature in the Arts page to see our upcoming virtual events.

Activating Green Spaces
We're striving for equity in the outdoors.

Through our new initiative, Activating Green Spaces, we aim to provide environmental education and outdoor experiences for underrepresented communities in Gary, IN.

Activating Green Spaces

pictures of birders in Gary, Indiana

Thanks to NIPSCO for providing grant funding for this project, and to our partners Brown Faces Green Spaces, Aetna Manor Revitalization Program, Gary Community School Corporation, West Side Leadership Academy, and the Urban League of Northwest Indiana, INC.

Thanks to NIPSCO for providing grant funding for this project, and to our partners Brown Faces Green Spaces, Aetna Manor Revitalization Program, Gary Community School Corporation, West Side Leadership Academy, and the Urban League of Northwest Indiana, INC.

We're striving for equity in the outdoors.

Through our new initiative, Activating Green Spaces, we aim to provide environmental education and outdoor experiences for underrepresented communities in Gary, IN.

Thanks to NIPSCO for providing grant funding for this project, and to our partners Brown Faces Green Spaces, Aetna Manor Revitalization Program, Gary Community School Corporation, West Side Leadership Academy, and the Urban League of Northwest Indiana, INC.

We're striving for equity in the outdoors.

Through our new initiative, Activating Green Spaces, we aim to provide environmental education and outdoor experiences for underrepresented communities in Gary, IN.

Activating Green Spaces

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Upcoming Events
October 3, 2022
Volunteer! Plant Identifying in Garden

Plant Identifying in Peg's Native Garden:

Last month we were able to clean up Peg's garden! The first Monday of October we are interested in Plant Identifying in Peg's Native Garden. This photo of Biodiversity in Peg's Native Garden, was taken in 2014! Fast forward to 2022 and this garden

Upcoming Events
October 4, 2022
Volunteer! Clean Up at the Historic Barker House

Join Save the Dunes for a day of outdoor clean-up at the historic Barker House.
 
Barker House is the headquarters for the Save the Dunes staff members. After two years of remote working and no in-person events, the grounds of Barker House are in need of some TLC.
If you are looking for an

Upcoming Events
October 6, 2022
Volunteer! Save the Seeds

Save the Seeds at Beverly Shores

Calling on Beverly Shores volunteers to assist with gathering seeds from several plant types at Beverly Shores Project Area! The purpose of seed gathering in the Great Marsh ties in with our restoration efforts that creates a corridor of habitats for our native

Upcoming Events
October 8, 2022
Birding - October Big Day @ Lydick Bog Nature Preserve

October "Big" Day is one of the biggest birding events of the year. Join birding guides Kristen Sweinhart and Evie Kirkwood to explore Lydick Bog Nature Preserve. Registration is required.

Upcoming Events
October 8, 2022
Birding - October Big Day @ Ambler Flatwoods

October "Big" Day is one of the biggest birding events of the year. Join interpretive guide Cookie Ferguson on an educational and inspirational birding hike through Ambler Flatwoods. Registration is required.

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Read Our Latest Posts
Interview with Valparaiso Farmer Tom Murphy
Interview with Valparaiso Farmer Tom Murphy
Tom Murphy, a Northwest Indiana farmer, partners with Shirley Heinze Land Trust on the Agricultural Land Program, developed with local farmers and agricultural organizations in order to surface resources and planning guidance to preserve NWI farmland for generations to come. Murphy has been instrumental...
Flower Power: Plant Natives with Bringing Nature Home
Flower Power: Plant Natives with Bringing Nature Home
The Bringing Nature Home Award is due August 20, 2022. Apply here! Native plants are pretty groovy—they have the power to sustain wildlife, protect our homes, and beautify communities. Shirley Heinze Land Trust works hard to restore natives throughout our nature preserves, and we also recognize the power...
Frogs Hopping Around Lydick Bog Nature Preserve
Frogs Hopping Around Lydick Bog Nature Preserve
Growing up with a forest in my backyard, I thought I knew all the sounds that Indiana spring nights had to offer, from the distinctive hoots of owls to the occasional chirp of bats. Apart from these somewhat rare springtime noises, it seemed like the forest, for the most part, held on to the blanket...
Streamside Sentinel
Streamside Sentinel
Immortalized in popular song, the sycamore occupies a special place on the Indiana panorama. The American sycamore (Platanus occidentalis) is one of the tallest trees (up to 150 feet) on the Hoosier landscape, and it sometimes exhibits a circumference so large that its hollow stumps once served as dwellings...
INSIGHTS Spring 2022– Vol 25 Issue 1
INSIGHTS Spring 2022– Vol 25 Issue 1
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Visit a Preserve Near You!
From globally rare dune and swale in Gary to lovely moraine forests near Valparaiso, to one of the last remaining bogs in Indiana near South Bend, there is likely to be one of our nature preserves near your community, where you have the chance to experience the natural wonders of one of the most biodiverse regions in the country.
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Your Donation Makes a Difference
The generosity of individuals is the foundation of our support. Whether a few dollars, a few hundred, or more, your donations enable us to uphold our commitment to forever protect and restore lands and waters throughout northwestern Indiana. Discover the ways that you can donate money or land to support the enduring mission of Shirley Heinze Land Trust.
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Nature Preserve Volunteer
Over 1,500 Hours Volunteered in 2021
Volunteers are the lifeblood of our organization. Whether you’d like to spend a few hours in nature by helping to maintain our trails and preserves, or assist with workshops and workdays that bring people closer to nature, or contribute behind the scenes to help Shirley Heinze Land Trust run smoothly, we need your help.
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Say Hello!
You may find us out in the field, maintaining our preserves, or at a meeting with conservation partners, or connecting with people in communities across northwestern Indiana. You may also find us in our offices, located on the edge of Meadowbrook Nature Preserve, just north of Valparaiso. Contact us today to say hello, learn more about what we do, and find out how you can help Shirley Heinze Land Trust protect natural places for generations to come.