Use caution while snow is on the trails.  Since we are experiencing snow, rain, sleet, freezing and thawing temperatures the trail surface will be changing as well.


for the


With the winter weather offering our usual Ohio variety we are reminding trail users to use caution.

Tips for Trail Use

  1.  Tell someone where you are hiking, which trailhead you will be taking, the time you are heading out and expected to return.
  2. Carry your cell phone with you.
  3. Wear appropriate gear for your winter adventure.  Layering is a must in case you get too warm.  
  4. Use props to help your trail adventure:  trekking sticks, traction aids for compacted trails or ice.  Snowshoes for lighter snow.
  5. Know the weather forecast
  6. Take a snack and a thermos with something warm to drink.
  7. Check back in with #1 when you return to your vehicle.




Stay tuned for information about our auction and the items that will be up to bid.  


Silent Auction 


We will be hosting our annual silent auction virtually this year amid Covid-19 concerns. Our auction will feature donations from local businesses, artists, and restaurants! Auction items will be listed in a special album on our Facebook page, and bidding will be open for 2 weeks. Bidding will open on March 1st and close on March 12th. We will notify the winners of each bid by March 15th, and the items will be available for no-contact delivery. The funds raised at the silent auction will go towards the our mission to promote the conservation and preservation of natural resources through education, community outreach, and personal experience. We will post more information and bidding instructions as we get closer to the auction date!


Outdoor Sanity Series

February is Winter Hike Month.  Get outside and spend some time at the Norma Johnson Center.

Welcome to the first month of activity for our 2021 Outdoor Sanity Series.  This month we are featuring Winter Hiking.  All of our trails are open dawn to dusk everyday of the year but during the month of February will provide three marked trails for trail users to explore.  All marked Winter Hike trails begin and end near the Conservation Drive parking area below the red barn.  When hiking this area is marked with a red parking symbol.   A restroom is located near this trail head but if weather temperatures are extreme it may be closed.  A portajohn is located at the front of the property near the Preservation Loop Kiosk and yellow pole barn throughout the year.  

Basic Loop – Marked with pink post and ribbon this trail starts and ends near the picnic shelter’s driveway.  Enjoy a leisurely stroll along the Conservation Pond and through the pine trees on a trail called Brugs Way.  Enjoy a section of our Accessible Trail but please note we are still working on this section of trail so watch your step. 

Vista View – Marked with blue posts and ribbon this trail starts at the picnic shelter and ends near the Conservation Loop Kiosk.  This intermediate-level walk will take you up a steep incline to walk along the ridge for a spectacular sightline view across the Brandywine Valley.  Did you know Norma’s family had an orchard  near this loop before it was mined for coal?

Adventurous – Marked with orange ribbon and post this trail begins near the Conservation Loop kiosk and also ends here too.  If you want a workout and explore the wooded trail this hike is for you.  The trail will lead you to the wetlands and around the wetland area on Rebecca’s Way.  Trail users can check out the suspension bridge and wind back to the wetland if you choose.  You will encounter a few ups and downs along the way but this trail provides lots of attractions for little ones walking with you.  




Trail Map Download

We have color coded our trails for Winter hiking ease.  Pink is our basic loop, Blue is the Vista View and Orange is the Adventurous hike.

 Winter Hike Map



Check out our new 2021 Outdoor Sanity Series! Each month has its own theme, with instructions for hiking and other activities included. At the start of every month, we will post updates on our webpage and our Facebook about the available activities for each monthly theme.   As we venture into 2021 and COVID restrictions are hopefully lifted we will post potential events that would go along with the themes.   January is the kick-off month.

  • January          Kick Off Month
  • February       Winter Hikes
  • March             Sounds of Silence
  • April                Giving back to the Earth
  • May                  Feathered Friends
  • June                 Aquatic Life
  • July                  Pollinators
  • August           Accessible Trail 
  • Sept.                Loop the Loops
  • October        Autumn Delights
  • Nov.                 Giving Thanks
  • Dec.                 Celebrating 2021


Let it snow let it snow let it snow! I know it sounds a little crazy but I love snow. I love being outside when it snows and the aftermath. Maybe not on the roads but definitely in the woods. Growing up in Western Ohio we would get a lot of drifting snow which created drifts! My favorite thing to do was to find a decent sized drift and start tunneling. Once I was able to get it large enough so I could crawl in and relax I would do just that and then lay there and listen to the silence. We had a small hill that led to the barn doors and I would get the grain shovel and sled down the embankment over and over again. As an adult, going home and looking at this slope cracks me up because it really isn’t that big, but it brought many hours of enjoyment to me as a child. I remember recess being filled with large cardboard pieces and many trips up and down the slope outside of the middle school. So I challenge you even if its just for 5 minutes or 5 hours get outside and play in the snow. It will be good for your soul! Let it Snow Let it Snow Let it SNOW!

UPDATE: Nov. 16, 2020

Registration is currently full. Any further registrations will be added to the waitlist. There is no guarantee that waitlisted registrants will receive a time slot.

Thank you!


Join us for “Pictures for a Purpose” at the Norma Johnson Center!

Our fall fundraiser is a family photoshoot with three photographers at the beautiful backdrop of our nature center. The event will be held on Sunday, Nov. 29th from 12pm-4pm. 

Each family will visit with each photographer in a different area of the Center, resulting in 3-5 photos from each photographer, for a total of 9-15 photos. Cost per family is $60 for the event. The photos will be provided in a digital format as quickly as possible after the event, with the option to print unlimited copies.

Each registration also comes with a family activity bag full of snacks and materials that suggest fun, outdoor activities that can be done at the NJC or even in your own backyard!

Safety precautions will be followed throughout the event. Online payment is preferred, but other options can be arranged. Masks are required at on-site registration and when interacting with staff and volunteers. All activities will be outdoors. In the event of rain or other inclement weather, a rescheduled date will be chosen and communicated with registered attendees. 

Registration is limited to 15 families, so don’t delay! Sign-up today and get your holiday photos taken care of, all while supporting your favorite trails and greenspace. Registration will close on Friday, Nov. 27th. A waitlist will be created for families interested in the event after 15 time slots are filled. There is no guarantee that waitlisted registrants will receive a time slot.

We thank the participating photographers for the donation of their time and talent. We are excited to feature Denice Hazlett of Sprouted Acorn Photography (; Naomi Benson of NB Photography (, and Teai Warner of Teai Marie Photography (

If you have 6+ people attending in your group, you will need to purchase two registration slots to accommodate the larger group.


Fall Fest Cancelled for 2020

We are sorry to announce that we will not be holding our annual Fall Fest event on October 10, 2020.  We do however invite you to continue to use the trails and the fishing ponds at the NJC.  The Center is open from dawn to dusk everyday of the year.  Enjoy the fall colors as the forest prepares for the winter.