Natural History Events in the Methow Valley

First Tuesday Lectures
Some of our
First Tuesday lectures were recorded to video.
Click here to see.

The Methow Conservancy sponsors a monthly “First Tuesday Lecture Series”. The lectures provide a forum to learn about the Methow Valley’s natural characteristics and natural resource issues. Generally "First Tuesday" Lectures are held on the first Tuesday of the month. The place varies so please check each event for the location. All First Tuesday Lectures are free and open to everyone. For more information contact Mary at 996-2870 or

First Tuesday Lectures Coming Up:

May 3rd: “The Triumph of Seeds”
7:00 – 8:30pm at The Merc Playhouse, Twisp
We live in a world of seeds. From our morning coffee to the cotton in our clothes, seeds support diets, economies, lifestyles, and civilizations around the globe. Join award-winning author and biologist Thor Hanson for an exploration of both the natural and cultural history of seeds.  Thor’s presentation weaves science and culture to show how these common wonders shape our world and touch our lives every day.  You’ll never look at a seed the same way again. The program is free and open to everyone.  Doors open at 6:30; concessions are available. For more information, contact us at 996-2870 or

June 7th: “The Methow’s Native Plants” with Rob Crandall and friends, 7:00-8:30pm, in the Native Plant Demonstration Garden at the Methow Valley Interpretive Center at TwispWorks, free.  Learn about pollination strategies, plant families, cultural uses, lichens and native landscaping.  Enjoy “native” cocktails too!

Other Methow Conservancy Events

Learn about Native Plants, Birds & Invasive Weeds!
Join Mary Kiesau, the Methow Conservancy’s Educational Programs Director, on one (or more) casual natural history “walk and talks” to identify and learn about the many Methow birds, wild plants and invasive weeds on these short outings.  These walks and hikes are perfect for people of all ages and levels of knowledge - no experience required!  Children who are able to walk on uneven ground for two+ hours are welcome to attend with an adult chaperon. We’ll go to a different location on each walk, and can accommodate children if you register in advance.  No dogs please. These mini-classes are free but space is limited so registration is required. Contact us for more details or to reserve your spot at or 509-996-2870. 

Saturday, May 7, 9:00-11:30am Mother’s Day Special Birds & Blooms
Tuesday, May 17, 8:00 - 11:00am Birds & Blooms
Monday, May 23, 8:00 - 9:30am Bird Walk
Friday, May 27, 2:30 – 4:00pm, Invasive Weed Stroll
Wednesday, June 1, 7:00 - 8:30am Bird Walk
Monday, June 6, 9:30 – 11:00am Invasive Weed Stroll
Thursday, June 9, 7:00 - 8:30am Bird Walk
Tuesday, June 14, 7:00 - 8:30am Bird Walk
Monday, June 20, 7:00am - Noon Summer Solstice Birds & Blooms Hike

(if there are more requests for invasive weed walks, we may add more)

May 7th: “Mother’s Day” Birds & Blooms Walk & Talk, 9:00 –11:30am with Mary Kiesau. See above for more details.  Free.

May 12-15th: Methow Conservancy Spring Naturalists’ Retreat. (4 spots left!) Spend three days enjoying the beautiful and wild Methow Valley, and engage in presentations and group dinners in the evenings. Under the friendly and expert tutelage of ornithologist Libby Mills and botanist Dana Visalli, both all-around great naturalists to boot, you will be amazed by all that you learn and see in this fantastic nature and educational experience! Participants should be willing and able to take part in the entire retreat including evenings. Participants should be in good physical condition, able to complete moderate hikes and spend 6+ hours in the field. Free tent camping is available at Dana’s property along the Methow River near Twisp, or you can make your own lodging arrangements. The class is limited to 20 people and costs $200*/person, including two dinners. To register or for more information, contact Mary at 509-996-2870 or

May 17th: Birds & Blooms Walk & Talk, 8:00 – 11:00am with Mary Kiesau. See above for more details. Free.

May 21st: Composting Systems Class, 9:30-10:00am, at the Classroom in Bloom garden, sliding scale cost.  Barb Preston and Betsy Cushman will share their strategies for composting with worms in your home garden. Classroom in Bloom staff will get into the science and assembly behind effective carbon/nitrogen layering compost systems.  Learn to boost your garden with compost!  Register now via Clasroom in Bloom.

May 23rd: Bird Walk & Talk, 8:00 – 9:30am with Mary Kiesau. See above for more details.  Free.

May 27th: Invasive Weed Walk & Talk, 2:30 – 4:00pm with Mary Kiesau. See above for more details Free.

June 1st: Bird Walk & Talk, 7:00 – 8:30am with Mary Kiesau. See above for more details. Free.

June 5th: Grass Identification Workshop, 9:00am – 3:30pm with Dana Visalli, $35*. Grasses make up a major part of the plant flora of the Methow, but how do you tell one grass from another? There are over 100 species of grass in the Methow Watershed. Join botanist Dana Visalli for a day in the lab and in the field, learning how to both recognize and key out some of our local grasses - and how to tell grasses from sedges and rushes.  You’ll have a chance to work with loupes and microscopes too.    Co-sponsored by the Methow Conservancy and the Okanogan Chapter of the Washington Native Plant Society. To register or for more information, contact Mary at 509-996-2870 or

June 6th: Invasive Weed Walk & Talk, 9:30 – 11:00am with Mary Kiesau. See above for more details. Free.

June 9th: Bird Walk & Talk, 7:00 – 8:30am with Mary Kiesau. See above for more details.  Free.

June 14th: Bird Walk & Talk, 7:00 – 8:30am with Mary Kiesau. See above for more details.  Free.

June 18th: The Last Salmon Chamber Musical, 2pm and 7pm, Seattle.  If you missed The Last Salmon at The Merc Playhouse, now is your opportunity to see it onstage in Seattle. The entire original cast will be performing at Seattle University's Lee Center for theArts on Saturday,June 18th at 2:00 and 7:00.  We couldn't be more excited to help show thisspectacular performance to more people. Find out more about the show, meet the creators and cast, listen to an excerpt, and buy your tickets here

June 18-19th:  Wildlife Track & Sign “Specialist” Evaluation & Certification, $375*.  (1 spot left!) Spend two full days in the field with professional wildlife trackers and educators David Moskowitz and Casey McFarland for an advanced certification class.  This high-level evaluation is geared towards people who have already scored high on Cybertracker’s standard certification course, or are already skilled animal trackers.  For more details, contact Mary at 509-996-2870 or

June 20th: “Summer Solstice” Naturalist Hike, 7:00 – Noon with Mary Kiesau. See above for more details.  Free.

Events from Other Organizations
Methow Recycles
Metal Drive is Saturday, April 30th and Sunday, May 1st, 9am - 3pm at Cascade Concrete on Horizon Flats Road in Winthrop. Click here for all the information.

MethowReady Neighborhood Leader Trainings will be Tuesday, May 17 and Wednesday, May 25 (choose one), from 5:30–7:30 pm at Aero Methow Rescue Service in Twisp.  These workshops train you in the “Map Your Neighborhood” program which is designed to help families and neighborhoods prepare for disasters. You should attend if you are interested in becoming a neighborhood leader or in just learning more.  Free pizza and dessert is provided.  Register at 509-449-5590 or at

An Affordable Housing Community Listening Session will be held Thursday May 19th from 5:30 pm to 7:30 p.m. at the Twisp Senior Center.  The Methow Valley Long Term Recovery (MVLTR) organization, with support from a diverse coalition of project partners including Room One, The Cove, the Methow Conservancy, TwispWorks, and the Winthrop and Twisp Chambers of Commerce invites members of the community to participate in this public gathering to learn about the project and give input to help shape the future of housing affordability and availability in the Methow Valley.  MVLTR has contracted with housing consultants Julie Brunner and Associates to conduct the housing affordability and availability needs assessment, working with a diverse steering committee, focus groups and key informants to develop recommendations for local action.  For more information contact MVLTR volunteer president Jason Paulsen at (509) 996-5866 or

TwispWorks “Methow Skills” Series starts May 28th.  Saturdays after the Farmer’s Market, come to TwispWorks for creative workshops with expert Methow instructors who will lead a variety of unique and practical classes. Classes run every Saturday May 28 through Sept 24. See the whole line-up of classes and register here

The Okanogan Chapter of the Washington Native Plant Society offers flower and other naturalist hikes through the spring and summer.  See their offerings here.

*Our Cancellation and Refund Policy
If you cancel or leave a fee-based course for any reason:
Full refunds will be given if the request is received two weeks or more before the day of the program (class, workshop, field trip, etc.).  If the cancellation is made less than two weeks before the start of the program, the Methow Conservancy will give a full refund only if we are able to fill your spot.  If you cancel 24 hours or less before the start time of the program or after the class has started there will be no refund of the program fee.  Although we rarely need to do so, we reserve the right to cancel a program.  In this case you will receive a full refund.

315 Riverside Avenue / PO Box 71    Winthrop, WA 98862     509.996.2870