Adult Programs

Flanders offers a full schedule of engaging programs year round allowing adults to expand their knowledge about nature, the environment and the arts.

Live Calendar Updates


“On the Farm” Photo Contest

For All
Flanders is holding a photography contest from now through May 14 with entries eligible for two different sets of prizes! Entitled Flanders "On the Farm”, all photos must depict some element of farm life such as animals, equipment, crops, or buildings. The submitted photos will first be judged by Flanders judges with prizes given for the top three submissions based on composition, image quality and the story the image tells. The photos will then be displayed as a photographic exhibit as part of the Flanders Farm Day Event being held on Saturday May 21st. There attendees will be able to cast a “People’s Choice” vote for their favorite photos with a second set of prizes given for those three that come out on top. Contestants may submit up to 5 entries in 8"x 10” print format. Submissions must be mailed or dropped off to Flanders offices by May 14th along with an entry blank identifying the photographer of the photo for each submitted photo. The cost for one submission is $5, 2/$7, 3/ $10, 4/$13 and 5/$15. All proceeds to benefit Flanders programming.
Dates/Times: Now through May 14
Location: Photos can be taken on any farm.
For rules and more information, click here. To download a printable entry form, click here.

Wildflower Walk on the Botany Trail

For All
Wildflower Walks on the Botany Trail Members of the Pomperaug Valley Garden Club are offering guided strolls along Flanders’ award winning Botany Trail. The trail is a refuge for wildflowers and native plants that have been rescued from area development. It is approximately one mile in length and features gentle terrain suitable for any age level. It is at one of its loveliest times in the spring when there are over 150 wildflowers on the trail blooming at different times.
Dates/Times: Sundays, May 1 & 8 / 2 PM (rain cancels)
Location: Meet near the Sugar House on Church Hill Road, ¼ mile from the intersection of Flanders and Church Hill Roads.
Cost: Free. Donations welcome.

“Give Local” Campaign

For Adults
We are participating in Give Local Greater Waterbury & Litchfield Hills – a 36 hour online giving event organized by the Connecticut Community Foundation. Make your donation to Flanders during Give Local and we will be eligible for matches and prizes with every donation of $10 or more made during the time period of 7AM on Tuesday, May 3rd to 7PM on Wednesday, May 4th. There will be a live link for making donations on our website and Facebook page on May 3 & 4 only. We look forward to your help and a great 36 hours! For more information on the “Give Local” campaign click here.
Dates/Times: 7AM on Tuesday, May 3 to 7PM on Wednesday, May 4
Location: Online at or

Artist Nature Journaling

For Adults
Wildlife and habitat scenes in May are filled with endless opportunities for artists to create works of art from. Artists with all level of talent are invited to Flanders for a series of Wednesday mornings to capture inspiration for an artist journal. They will be guided by Melody Asbury a talented lifelong painter. Students can plan on painting and drawing outside or in the Van Vleck studio in case of rain. Pen and ink, watercolor or pencil or other portable mediums are all suitable. Students should bring a journal and the art medium of their choice to class.
Dates/Times: Wednesdays, May 4, 11, 18 & 25/ 9:30 -11:30 AM
Location: The Studio
Cost: $100 Members / $150 Non Members for all classes.

The Wonderful World of Lichens

For All
Area naturalists Peter and Barbara Rzasa will give a presentation on lichens. Do you ever wonder what those yellowish green circles are growing on trees? Or that grayish crusty stuff found on rocks? Most likely they are lichens, curious plants that are part fungus and part alga or cyanobacteria. At this PowerPoint presentation participants will learn to recognize different lichen forms and structures, their ecology, habitat requirements and ancient and modern uses of lichens. Several specimens will be available for viewing through a stereo-microscope. A short hike following the presentation will help attendees locate and identify lichens and locations most likely to produce specimens.
Dates/Times: Sunday, May 15 / 1PM
Location: Sugar House
Cost: $10 Members / $15 Non Members.

Birds and Other Wonders of the Whittemore Sanctuary

For All
Using photos and natural history information to demonstrate the importance of land preservation and conservation locally, regional, and globally, Flanders will be hosting area naturalist Chris Wood who has been an active birder most of his life and who professionally has been involved with environmental and economic responsibilities for many organizations. He is a long time Woodbury resident who hikes, birds, and photographs in Flanders’ Whittemore Sanctuary several times a month throughout the year. Chris will give an engaging presentation on the natural diversity found there.
Dates/Times: Tuesday, May 17/ 7PM
Location: $10 members & $15/ non-members
Cost: $10 Members / $15 Non Members.

Needle Felting

For Adults
Rachel Gerowe of Redbarn Originals will lead a workshop on needle felting an easy-to-learn craft that involves using a barbed needle to sculpt wool. The featured kit of the month is raccoons. People also have the option of choosing from a large variety of other available kits ranging in price from $15 to $35.Most kits include enough materials to make one sculpture in class and another at home. Participants can save $5 if they bring their own needles and foam. Have your own needle felting project going? For $10 bring it to class and receive guidance and support on it.
Dates/Times: Thursday, May 19 /7 PM
Location: The Van Vleck House
Cost: Varies from $15-$35 depending on kit chosen or bring your own project and receive guidance for $10

“Paint the Farm” Artist Challenge

For All
We are holding a “Paint the Farm” Artist Challenge, a timed event for artists to create works of art during the popular Flanders Farm Day event on Saturday, May 21st. This non-juried event is open to all plein air artists working in all media and includes a “Wet Paint” exhibition/sale from 3-4 at the hay wagon main stage. Visitors and art buyers can place bids in the silent auction or “buy it now” to take home newly created artwork. Flanders commission is 30% from Wet Paint Sales. Plein air artists are required to arrive by 11AM and must finish a painting by 2 PM to participate in the judging and wet paint sale. Monetary prizes will be awarded including a Popular Choice award where farm day visitors will vote for their favorite art. Limited to first 50 artists to register.
Dates/Times: Saturday, May 21 / 11AM-2PM during Farm Day Event
Location: The Van Vleck Sanctuary
Cost: $10 entry fee

Farm Day Celebration

For All
Capturing the sights, sounds, and smells of a real New England Farm, Flanders’ Farm Day is an annual favorite for families. There will be great food, live music and lots of family-friendly entertainment that will take place on the grounds throughout the day. This year we are excited to have mother /son celebrity horses Cupid and Arrow here and our first ever Flanders Farm Olympics! Come celebrate the great outdoors and get a taste of the farming life. The event will be held rain or shine.
Dates/Times: Saturday, May 21 / 10 AM - 4 PM
Location: Van Vleck Farm and Nature Sanctuary
Cost: $6 per person; Free for Children age 3 and under.


Needle Felting | Thursday, June 2 | 7 PM | Van Vleck House

Flanders “Field Forest 5K “ Trail Run Event| Friday, June 10 | 6 PM | Van Vleck Sanctuary

Edible Plants & Mushrooms |Saturday, June 11|Sugar House


Flanders Photography Club

The newly formed Flanders Photography Club focuses on outdoor nature photography. The club is open to all. It meets monthly at the Studio with its purpose being to promote the development of photographic skills and the art of photography with a spotlight on nature, flora, fauna and the landscape. Meeting content will include fundamental instructions on the basics of outdoor photography, camera operation, features and techniques as well as various photographic tips. Meetings will include presentations, forums, and guest speakers as well as exercises and projects, such as macro, wildlife and bird photography. We will create our own community of nature lovers and photographers! $20 Members/ Non- members $40 Membership Registration:

Flanders Letterbox Series

For All
Flanders has planted several letterboxes on the family friendly trails at their preserves and sanctuaries. Combining art and nature in a fun interactive way, letterboxing is a popular treasure hunting activity done world-wide. At Flanders, the letterboxing clues include educational comments about the natural world. Anyone who hikes at least twelve of the letterboxing trails at Flanders Nature Center and Land Trust, stamps the letters from those trails in their passport and presents their passport at the Flanders office will be given the opportunity to sign their Trail Name on our Letterboxer “Hall of Fame” board and will receive a small prize. For More Information on letterboxing click here.

To register for any programs, call 203-263-3711 or click on the registration link next to the program. Click here to become a Flanders member and receive a discount on programs!

Programs in the Community

From autumn traditions to holiday decorations, Flanders talented educators can bring seasonal programs to your business or organization. It’s a perfect activity for senior centers, youth groups, scout troops, religious organizations, service clubs, corporations or any group looking for an out-of-the-ordinary learning experience. Space is limited to 20 participants per session. 10 participant minimum. Volunteers are welcome to help! Call (203) 263-3711 to inquire about our monthly, nature-themed programs that may be just right for your group or organization

Annual Activities at Flanders

Four Seasons of Flanders Benefit Auction and Gala
Maple Celebrations
Farm Day
Winter Holiday Programs
For more information, contact us.
To join or renew your membership, please click here.
To register for any of the adult programs at Flanders, call 203-263-3711.


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hiking trails and maps

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