Sauk Valley Community College is teaming up with several community organizations and businesses to enhance the campus’s prairie plot located just east of the main building. The grant-funded project begins this week.
The main goal will be to enhance the prairie plot area to provide many more educational, recreational, and inclusive opportunities for Sauk Valley area residents to experience prairie plant life native to Illinois. Sabrina Earl, coordinator of Sauk’s AmeriCorps program, explained that this project is very community-based.
“We hope that in time this can become a real prairie education center,” said Earl, who added community organizations already involved include the Northwestern Center for Independent Living (NICIL), Kreider Services, the Department of Rehabilitative Services (DORS), and a variety of community members that are volunteering time and resources. Earl also said there are also local vendors interested in making plant and material donations.
The project began Wednesday, August 11, with ground-breaking for a sidewalk that will lead from the existing sidewalk on the east side to the prairie plot. Future plans include installing raising plant beds, adding plant identification signage, and installing multi-sensory components for disabled visitors.