large building with yellow flowers and green plants in foreground

Photo Credit © Friends of Capital Springs Recreation Area

Capital Springs State Recreation Area

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Training Dates

April 7 - April 30, 2022


The Friends of Capital Springs Recreation Area and its partners will host a training April 7–30, Thursdays and Fridays 6–9pm, and Saturdays 9am–4pm. Headquartered at the Capital Springs Recreation Area and meeting at the Lussier Family Heritage Center in Madison, the training covers geology, water, plant communities, wildlife, ecology, climate and weather, natural history, human connections to the landscape, and ways Master Naturalists can use their talents in our community. The training includes some indoor instruction, but most learning is through in-person experiences, field trips, and interactions with guest speakers. You will practice stream monitoring with the Rock River Coalition, learn about glacial history by walking glacial footprints, take a scientist-led tour of Waubesa Wetlands, view migratory birds, learn about nature-based solutions to water challenges at Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District’s plant, and explore the UW-Madison Arboretum with field experts. Capital Springs’ diverse land communities and proximity to Madison make it an ideal outdoor classroom and convenient place to continue volunteering through opportunities offered by the Friends and its partners. Additionally, the course takes advantage of a portion of the park’s designation as the Lake Farms Archaeological District (listed on the National Register of Historic Places).

The Wisconsin Master Naturalist program is a network of well-informed volunteers dedicated to conservation service, leadership, and lifelong learning. The Master Naturalist training provides 40 hours of education in a variety of natural history topics and Master Naturalist service areas. Through expert-led trainings, Master Naturalists are equipped to address challenges facing the state by making positive impacts through stewardship, citizen science, and educational activities. Trainings have an emphasis on outdoor field experiences with some classroom instruction and are taught by professional natural resources educators and scientists. Once trained, Wisconsin Master Naturalists record 40 hours of service and 8 hours of advanced training each year to maintain certification and receive a recognition pin.



Thursday, April 7th: 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Friday, April 8th: 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Saturday, April 9th: 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

Thursday, April 14th: 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Friday, April 15th: 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Saturday, April 16th: 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

Thursday, April 21st: 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Friday, April 22nd: 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Saturday, April 23rd: 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

Thursday, April 28th: 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Friday, April 29th: 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Saturday, April 30th: 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

Class Size



To be a certified Master Naturalist, you will be required to:

  • Attend regularly. Only four hours of training may be missed.
  • Be 18 years old or older.
  • Travel in personal vehicles as necessary to reach different learning sites throughout the training.
  • Complete a small training project.

** Master Naturalist Trainings are primarily outdoor learning experiences which may include extended periods of standing, hiking on both flat paths and off-trails with inclines, and a variety of weather conditions. If you have questions about the activity level of the training, please contact the program office prior to registering.

Financial Hardship

The Wisconsin Master Naturalist program believes that finances should not be a barrier to learning. Reduced registration fees are available for those who indicate the fee is a hardship. Reduced fees will be available during the registration process at a self-selected rate of either $200, $150, or $100. Our hope is that by participating in the Master Naturalist program you are able to give back your time to organizations that need your help. And if your financial situation changes in the future that you’ll consider a donation back to our program.

COVID Considerations

In response to updated CDC guidance and changing local health conditions we have updated our program guidance. During our upcoming training, we will concentrate our learning outdoors, as much as possible. The use of masks in program settings will be an individual choice. In counties with high community levels of COVID-19, it is strongly recommended that all individuals (regardless of vaccination status) wear a mask when indoors. Please check the levels prior to each training date. All individuals are welcome to continue protected practices, such as face coverings and distancing, even if it is not required or advised. Individual masking choices should not be interpreted as an indicator of vaccination status.

Host sites and field locations may have more stringent requirements. Please follow the guidance that they provide at that time. We recommend bringing a face covering with you each day to be prepared for those situations. Please continue to take measures to protect the vulnerable people in our communities. We ask all staff, volunteers, and participants to stay home when they have signs of infectious illness. Proper handwashing and respiratory etiquette are also important measures to keep individuals and our communities healthy. Everyone who is able should stay up to date on their vaccinations. As we have since the beginning of the pandemic, we will continue to monitor state and local health data. We will notify you if these guidelines change in the future.

This training has passed