Pelicans gather at Carl and Myrna Nygren Wetland Preserve in Rockton. (Photo by Paul Lindquist/Provided by Natural Land Institute)
Rock River Current
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ROCKTON — Natural Land Institute will host a summer gala later this month to raise money to support a birding hotspot in northern Illinois.

The fundraiser, dubbed Party on the Prairie is for the Birds, is slated for 4:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Saturday, July 20 at Carl & Myrna Nygren Wetland Preserve, 3190 W. Rockton Road. Registration deadline is Friday, July 12.

The wetlands have been a migration stop for American white pelicans and sandhill cranes, and a home for grassland birds such as eastern bluebirds, dickcissels and eastern meadowlarks, to name a few.

The outdoor gala will feature horse-drawn wagon rides through the prairie and live music by Three Good Men during a social hour with a cash bar.

Appetizers and a signature cocktail will be served at 5:30 p.m. followed by dinner catered by GreenFire Restaurant. Dinner will be served in a large tent overlooking the midsummer wildflowers in the prairie.

There will also be a silent auction with nature-themed and bird-themed items to bid on.

After dinner a private picnic for up to 12 people at Nygren Wetland will be auctioned off live.

The cost is $90 per person. Table options are also available. For more information or to make a reservation, visit or call 815-964-6666.

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