Connecting people with nature in Ontario's Mississippi Valley

IMPORTANT NOTE:  Start time is 7:00 PM!

The 2019 Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists’ Members’ Night and Annual General Meeting will be held on May 16 from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. The meeting will start promptly at 7:00 p.m., instead of our usual 7:30, to allow some of our Young Naturalists to participate in Members’ Night prior to the AGM.

MVFN Members’ Night

7:00 Opening, Show and Tell                                                 Ken Allison
7:10 Presentation of CB Nature Bursary recipients                Michael McPherson
7:20 Presentation of Youth Summit Sponsorship                  Tineke Kuiper
7:30 Young Naturalists                                                           Patty McLaughlin
7:45 Previous CB Bursary Recipient                                      Laura Symon
7:55 Previous ON Youth Summit & CB Bursary Recipient     Brenda Boyd
8:00 – 8:10 Leg stretch

8:15 MVFN Annual General Meeting

1. Call to order                                                                      Ron Williamson
2. President’s remarks and committee reports                      Linda McCormick
3. Financials                                                                           Jim Atack
4. Nominating Committee Report                                          Jim Atack
5. Remarks of new president and introduction                       Pat Enright
of 2019/20 Board members
6. Other business
7. Adjournment

The AGM is a very important function in the life of any organization, so we hope you can stay and take part in learning about the affairs of MVFN during this past year. You will have an opportunity to vote on the selection of the new Board of Directors for 2019/20, the 2019/20 budget, and other policies and reports.

Date: Thursday, May 16th, 2019

Time: Doors open at 6:30, presentations start at 7:00, and the Annual General Meeting starts at 8:15.

Place: Almonte United Church Social Hall, 106 Elgin Street, Almonte

All MVFN members are welcome.

Cantley Quarry: Monument of the Ice Age  Sunday, May 5th, 2019

Join MVFN the afternoon of Sunday, May 5th for a visit to the unique glacially-carved geological features exposed at a quarry in Cantley, Quebec. This field trip will be led by glacial and hydrogeology expert, Dr. David Sharpe of the Geological Survey of Canada, who made a very successful presentation on “The Significance of Glaciation in Canada and the Ottawa Valley” to MVFN in October, 2018.

A video of some of the fascinating rock forms we will see at the site can be viewed here

Trip duration: Approximately 4-5 hours total, including an hour drive from Almonte through Ottawa-Gatineau to Cantley, near Wakefield, Quebec, a planned 2 hour site visit and then an hour return trip.


Car pooling: We have 2 meeting points for car pooling.
• 12:30 at the Almonte Civitan Community Hall (GPS: 500 Almonte St, Almonte, ON K0A 1A0). Please park at the far end near the soccer pitches.
• 1 pm at the Eagleson Park-and-Ride (GPS: Eagleson Rd &, ON-417, Ottawa, ON K2L 4C6). Please meet in the southwest sector (drive in the entrance, go past the bus shelters and immediately turn right to the southwest area of the lot).

What to bring: The site visit is a short walk from the cars, and the terrain at the quarry is uneven. Ensure you wear sturdy boots and dress appropriately for weather conditions. The outing will go ahead rain or shine.

Registration: You must pre-register for this event by completing the form found here. Registration is limited to 25 people.

MVFN membership must be up-to-date (check your membership card if you are not sure).

If you need more information, please contact at (613) 461-4464.

There is no fee for this trip. Up to 25 people from the McNamara Field Naturalists are also invited by Dr. Sharpe to join in on this field visit.

With the late spring this year, MVFN is very pleased to invite you to join Ken Allison at his and Ruth’s beautiful country property at 561 Wolf Grove Road from 6:00 – 8:00 a.m. on Wednesday, May 1 to see more newly arriving birds, as well as other fauna and flora.

With Ken’s enthusiastic expertise in many different aspects of nature to help us, we will see some emerging flora, such as hepaticas, which are already in bloom, and hopefully, some spring beauties and Dutchman’s breeches, as well as getting to know the many species of trees on their property.

We hope to see and/or hear a Hermit Thrush, Barred Owl, Red-shouldered Hawk, Wood Duck, Hooded Merganser, Swamp Sparrow, Pileated Woodpecker, both Ruby-crowned and Golden-crowned Kinglets and Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers drumming. With luck, the Yellow-rumped Warbler will have arrived back!

To get to Ken & Ruth’s place, travel west on Wolf Grove Road, past Concession #8 and the Auld Kirk Cemetery (on your right). The laneway is the second on the left at the top of the hill, #561.

For further information, please contact Ken at: or 613-256-4283

The Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists will sponsor two students to attend this action packed weekend from September 20-22, 2019.

What is it?

The Youth Summit brings together about 100 students in grades 9-12 from across Ontario to learn about the variety of natural life in our province and positive solutions to conservation and environmental issues in a complex and changing world. Hosted by the Ontario Nature Youth Council, all workshops and activities reflect topics that are the most important to today’s youth.

Some highlights to look forward to at the 2019 Summit:

• Compelling, interactive workshops and activities
• A keynote presentation by a high‐profile environmental speaker
• A wonderful venue to explore on Lake Couchiching, complete with hiking trails, early‐morning canoeing and nightly campfires
• Meeting diverse young leaders with similar interests from across Ontario!

What is included in the registration?

All meals, accommodation and transportation from Toronto to Orillia and back.


The sponsorship includes the $375 registration fee paid directly by MVFN and up to $150 for travel expenses to Toronto and back.

Who is eligible to apply?

High school students (grade 9-12 as of September 2019) in Lanark County and region interested in the natural world.

Application Process

Complete the application online. Selected candidates may have a short interview with MVFN members.
Application Deadline May 1, 2019.
Winners will be announced May 16, 2019 at MVFN Annual General Meeting.

Past Attendees
Sophie Anderson
Kea McKay

Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary

The Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary is offered annually to assist graduating high school students who will pursue post-secondary studies in a field related to the nat-ural environment. One or more bursaries of $1000 will be awarded each year to students from our area.

Information on the bursary awards program is usually updated in the Fall, so students are aware and can consider the awards as they begin to complete applications for post-graduate study after high school. Application deadline is May 1. Recipients are announced at MVFN’s Annual General Meeting in late May.

The Bursary is named for Cliff Bennett, a founding member of the MVFN. It was established in 2007 by Cliff’s many friends on his 75th birthday, to honour, with a legacy, his life-long contribution to nature education. To date $16,700 has been awarded to 21 students graduating from high schools in our area who have gone on to studies at colleges and universities across the country.

To be eligible, a student must be graduating from a high school in Lanark County or West Carleton (or must confirm individual or family MVFN membership) and be accepted into a college or university program related to nature and the environment. As well as academic achievement, the Committee will consider an applicant’s involvement in issues related to the natural environment. Previous recipients have demonstrated and actively promoted environmental awareness through school projects and volunteering in their communities.

Past winners of the Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Award have pursued post-secondary studies in ecosystem and resource management, environmental sciences and engineering, marine biology and zoology. Others have followed their passion in environmental stewardship by studying fish and wildlife management or bio-technology.

Application forms are available from student service offices at area high schools, or here at

2019 Application Form

For further information, students may contact Michael Macpherson, Chair of the Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary Awards Committee at