Big Marsh is a 280.13 acre property in the South Deering Area on the southeast side of Chicago in the Calumet Area Reserve. Once an active industrial property, the site was acquired by the Park District in 2011 and opened as a new public park in 2016. The vision of Big Marsh is to provide a new type of recreation in Chicago that marries habitat restoration with public use. Roughly 45 acres are developed for eco-recreation opportunities including hiking, adventure courses, and off-road biking. The eco-recreation elements are located primarily on existing slag fields where plants have a hard time growing and good habitat creation is unlikely. Other acreage is reserved for more passive recreation including bird-watching and nature walking. All acreage is being developed to protect or further enhance the overall natural habitat of the park property including sensitivity to flora, fauna, and wetlands. Please bring a mask, long pants, and closed toe shoes, and bring a (full) water bottle. We will take care of everything else! Volunteers will help us dig holes, plant trees, mulch, and water. Social distancing will be practiced. Masks may need to be worn for the duration of the project.
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