It's the Flying Colors Butterfly Festival
National Geographic author Gary Ferguson is the special guest at this weekend's festivities at the Chattahoochee Nature Center.
Gary Ferguson, author of 18 books on science and nature, will deliver a special presentation today on Atlanta resident John Ripley Forbes, who helped found nearly 200 of the country’s most valued nature preserves, centers and museums.
He's the special guest at the Flying Colors Butterfly Festival at the Chattahoochee Nature Center in Roswell, which continues until 3 p.m. today and runs from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday.
The event celebrates the publication of Ferguson’s new book "Nature’s Keeper: John Ripley Forbes and the Children’s Nature Movement," and takes place today at 2:30 p.m. in the Cowie Weiss Theater at the Chattahoochee Nature Center.
“When it comes to championing the great outdoors,” says Ferguson, “John Ripley Forbes was one of the most influential Atlantans in twentieth-century American history. His unbounded enthusiasm for bringing kids to nature helped set the stage for the outdoor education movement of the late 1960s and ’70s. The opportunities we have today to share nature with our kids is in no small part thanks to his vision.”
The festival features live butterfly releases and a Butterfly and Caterpillar Costume Parade. Admission is $8 for CNC members and $10 for non-members. The Chattahoochee Nature Center is located at 9135 Willeo Road in Roswell.
All proceeds from the sale of the book "Nature’s Keeper" benefit the John Ripley Forbes Big Trees Forest Preserve in Sandy Springs.
Across some fifty years, editors from The Saturday Evening Post, Time magazine and Reader’s Digest could count on this: any story about John Ripley Forbes was guaranteed to thrill their readers. These popular magazines published photos of Forbes surrounded by kids, often with a fox or a deodorized skunk or a rabbit or two from his famous “animal lending libraries.”
Dubbed the “Johnny Appleseed” of America’s nature centers, the magazines depicted Forbes creating America’s first nature museum for black children, in rural Alabama, and a nature center at the Boys Club of Harlem. Throughout the twentieth century, Americans would declare in no uncertain terms the importance of kids being given a chance to spend time in nature. And when they forgot, it was Forbes who kept the fire lit for them.
Gary Ferguson has written for many publications from Vanity Fair to The Los Angeles Times. He’s also the author of 18 books on science and nature, including the award-winning Hawk’s Rest: A Season in the Remote Heart of Yellowstone, published by National Geographic Adventure Press, as well as a keynote presenter at conservation and outdoor education gatherings around the country.