Community Programs

Summer Gnome Scavenger Hunt

Who: Everyone!
Where: Wilbur D. May Arboretum & Botanical Garden, Arboretum South Entrance
When: June Tabling Days: Tuesday 10am - 12pm, Friday 1pm - 3pm, & Saturday 10am - 12pm

Cost: Free!
Contact: Laura Fraser at for more information!

During the months of June, July, and August the May Arboretum will have garden gnomes hidden throughout the arboretum. The gnomes will be out all summer long, with new ones added each month. You can do the scavenger hunt anytime throughout the summer, just pick up a map or print one off! Maps are available outside of the arboretum office or online. Stop by on one of our tabling days to turn in your completed map to receive a small prize! Contact the Arboretum Educator for more information.

August Scavenger Hunt Map

August Prize Redemption Days

Weekend Nature Walks

Who: Families with children ages 10 and younger. 
Where: Wilbur D. May Arboretum & Botanical Garden, Arboretum West Entrance (next to May Museum)
When: Check back for upcoming 2020 dates
Cost: Free!
Contact: Bill Carlos

Join us every other Saturday for a family friendly walk as we explore the plants and wildlife of the May Arboretum.  Each walk will include a nature themed activity that can be modified for kids of all ages.  The schedule and activities can be found below. Click the link above to see our Facebook event page. Contact the Arboretum Educator for more information.  


Nature Explorers: Nature Journaling for Home Schoolers

Welcome local home school children and parents to a new experimental Arboretum program! Join our educator for guided outdoor explorations to learn more about the natural world, get better at drawing, and/or just spend time outside with your family. This program is best suited for ages 8 and up.

What is nature journaling?
Nature journaling is an activity for all ages where one spends time sketching & writing about the things that they experience outdoors. This activity does NOT depend on artistic skill, and instead is a pursuit of observation rather than of drawing mastery. Nature journaling is a valuable educational tool for children and adults alike to ask more questions about nature, and in turn develop a mindset more comfortable with scientific inquiry. Getting better at drawing is just a natural side effect of drawing a lot!

Nature journaling is popular in many home school curriculums, particularly with those using the Charlotte Mason method. We at the Arboretum are proud to include this educational opportunity to our Reno homeschooling community!

Session topics are inspired by Next Generation Science Standards, Nevada Visual Arts Standards, and the California Native Plant Society's Nature Journaling curriculum. Our "Nature Explorer" sessions will be 1-1.5 hours long and, generally, include a short hike, a guided activity, and free journaling time.

Drawing supplies (pencils, colored pencils, erasers) are provided. Feel free to bring additional supplies as you please. Journals must be supplied by the parent(s). Parents are also encouraged to bring a journal  and draw alongside their child. Don't worry if you don't think you're good at drawing -- it's not about making pretty pictures, it's about observation! 

Please check back for upcoming dates.

Bird Walks

Who: Everyone!
Wilbur D. May Arboretum & Botanical Garden Office (next to Ranch House)
When: Please check back for upcoming 2020 dates.
Cost: Free!

Join us on Friday afternoons to start your weekends right: looking for birds! We'll stroll through the gardens watching and listening for some of the West's most beautiful feathered creatures, while learning a bit about taxonomy and biology. All experience levels are welcome! We have a limited number of binoculars, so if you have them please bring them. Hope to see you there! Click the link above to see our Facebook event page. Contact the Arboretum Educator for more information.