Autumn 2005
Vol. 13 No. 3
"In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous." - Aristotle

In this issue...

Reflections from the President

DelRay Visits the Nature Area

2004 Raptor Banding in the Grosse Ile Nature Area

A College Student's Survey of Bugs in Our Nature Area

Your Conservancy Quietly in Action

13th Annual Meeting Saturday, November 5 10AM

Upcoming Events...

November 5
Annual Meeting
10:00AM - Noon
Centennial Farm

Fall Hours
Nature Area Open
Saturday 10:00AM - 2:00PM
Thursday 5:30PM - Dusk
Closed when raining
Last Day Open - October 29

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DelRay Visits the Nature Area
by Peter Toeroek Rock

DelRay students at the Seaplane Base with Tamar Dexheimer, learning how she conducted her senior individual project.

On July 27th GINLC hosted 53 children and 3 adults from the DelRay Neighborhood House at the Nature Area.

Are you familiar with DelRay? It is an economically depressed and environmentally polluted neighborhood in southwest Detroit. According to the 2000 U.S. Census the median household income in DelRay is $18,856, 53% of its citizens are not part of the workforce and only 43% of residents, aged 25 and above, have a high school degree or equivalent.

GINLC’s Environmental Outreach Program enriched the lives of 53 children from the DelRay community in Southwest Detroit.

I am familiar with DelRay. When we arrived in the U.S. from war ravaged Europe in 1951 it was Detroit’s Hungarian ethnic community. That’s where we attended church, listened to gypsy music, bought Hungarian foods, socialized, and worked our way into American society. It was a rough neighborhood but it was our safe haven from the bombed out cities of Hungary and Germany. Now DelRay looks like one of those old bombed out cities.

That is not the fault of the children living there now and we are trying to help. The Grosse Ile Rotary Club graciously donated $10,000 to the DelRay Neighborhood House to conduct a summer program. As a result as many as 1000 neighborhood kids get to play sports, enjoy games, received academic tutoring and went on field trips. As a part of GINLC’s environmental outreach program we invited the children to our Nature Area. When the DelRay kids stepped off the school bus they thought they were “Up North.” We split into groups and took them to three locations:

  • The Seaplane Base where Tamar Dexheimer showed them how she conducted her Kalamazoo College senior individual project on aquatic macroinvertebrates,

  • The shoreline Restoration area where Margarete Hasserodt and Bruce Jones showed them the aquatic shelf and the recently planted native Michigan wetland flowers and plants, and

  • Quarry Pond where Barbara Leeper helped them conduct
    water tests.

Before departing the Nature Area the kids gathered together to shout out their DelRay Creed for us. The seventh part of the creed is “I will always respect myself, others and the environment.” May we all try to live by such a creed.

Peter Rock with DelRay group