Upcoming Scouting Opportunities

The following activities are offered as additional events for your families. These activities are great supplements to the Scouting program but are not considered Pack events. To view Pack events please click here.


Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge
Prairie City, IA 50228 – (515)994-3400

Monarch Madness– Saturday, September 6, 9:00am-11:00am, at Neal Smith NWR. We need volunteers to help us catch, tag, and release monarch butterflies. The data collected for this event will be submitted to Monarch Watch, so scientists can learn more about monarchs’ fascinating migration. Registration is limited to the first 100 participants and although space is still available, we fill up quickly!

Bison Day– Saturday, September 27, 10am-3pm, at Neal Smith NWR. Our annual Bison Day event is a celebration of bison and the prairie ecosystem that sustains them. Throughout the day there will be bison talks, music, games, crafts, demonstrations, a bison-chip throwing contest, and readings by author John Price! This is not a volunteer event, but is fun and educational.

Ding Darling Day– Saturday, October 11, 9am-12pm. In honor of Iowan J.N. “Ding” Darling, a pioneer conservationist, the refuge is hosting stewardship opportunities for you and your group. We need volunteers to help restore the prairie ecosystem by collecting seeds and removing invasive plants. A FREE lunch will be provided by the Friends of Neal Smith NWR.


Polk County Conservation

Wild Night Life & Hike
Friday, September 5 @ 7:30-9:00 p.m.
Jester Park, Camp Area 5
Join naturalists for a campfire program about the wild night life in Jester Park. A short hike will follow as we search for some of these nocturnal animals. Afterwards enjoy eating s’mores around the campfire. Pre-registration required; deadline is September 3. Fee: $5.

Iowa Outdoor Expo
Saturday, September 27 @ 9:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m.
Sunday, September 28 @ 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. Des Moines Izaak Walton League
Try your skills at canoeing/kayaking, archery, fishing, trap shooting, BB Guns, geocaching and much more. Free family event. Visit for more information.

Friday, October 3 @ 7:00-8:30 p.m. Yellow Banks Park, Shelter #1
Turn your eyes to the sky to view the autumn constellations. Local astronomers will provide telescopes.

Fall Colors Hike
Saturday, October 18, 1:00-2:00 p.m.
Thomas Mitchell Park, meet at pond parking lot
Come enjoy the season! A naturalist will lead a nature hike through the woods and explain the brilliance of fall colors.

Owl Prowl
Friday, October 24 @ 6:00-7:30 p.m.
Thomas Mitchell Park, meet at pond parking lot
Join a naturalist for a lively campfire program to learn about owls. After a discussion about these flying predators of the night, we will go for a hike and learn how to call three different owl species.

Snowshoe Hike
Friday, January 2 @ 10:00-11:30 a.m.
Easter Lake Park, Shelter #3
Learn how easy and fun snowshoeing can be while experiencing the great outdoors. Wear warm boots. Class will be canceled without snow. Pre-registration required; deadline is December 31. Minimum age 6. Fee: $5 (includes snowshoes).

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