Those of you who follow the Lagoon Society will know that we have a quite a few different projects on the go! We often get asked how these projects are connected and what exactly they involve. Well, here's a brief run down. If you want to learn more, we'd be happy to connect with you!
PENDER HARBOUR OCEAN DISCOVERY STATION
Set in the heart of Pender Harbour, PODS will help shed light on the rich biodiversity of marine and freshwater life of the Salish Sea and the many estuaries, lakes, creeks, and wetlands of the beautiful Sunshine Coast.
At PODS, we will take action to protect, restore, and enhance aquatic habitats, and species-at-risk, and to mitigate threats to biodiversity through stewardship, enhancement, and restoration activities and the creation of protected areas.
PODS will welcome visitors of all ages to take part in research and monitoring programs, field schools, internships, workshops, conferences, cultural programs, and international exchanges in a safe and fulfilling environment.
PODS will attract university researchers from around the world to conduct groundbreaking research to find elegant solutions to the most pressing challenges of our time through high quality science and well-informed decision-making.
PODS will become a model for establishing a network of similar research facilities along the entire West Coast of British Columbia.
We are currently seeking donations to help us purchase Irvines Landing located at the entrance to Pender Harbour. With your help, we will make Irvines Landing the future home of PODS. You can make a donation through our website.
WOOD DUCK BUS
The Wood Duck Bus is a community bus that is owned by the Ruby Lake Lagoon Society, and shared with the greater community by donation. The bus was retired by the Sunshine Coast's transit system in 2014, and Lagoon Society Chair Michael Jackson saw an opportunity. In a region largely "off-the-grid" for public transit, the Pender Harbour community was in great need of something to make transportation of large groups easier.
Since its introduction at the May Day Parade in 2014, the Wood Duck Bus has been servicing the Pender Harbour Area for all sorts of different community groups and events. It serves both as a bus to facilitate programs for the Lagoon Society, such as Nature School and our new Nature Tours, and is available to other community groups for a small donation.
For information on how you and your organization can use the Wood Duck Bus, contact our friendly staff at the EarthFair Store:
Unit 3 12887 Madeira Park Road
PO Box 8, Madeira Park, BC V0N 2H0
SUNSHINE COAST BIODIVERSITY STRATEGY
The Lagoon Society is proud to present our Biodiversity Strategy, created in collaboration with numerous partner groups and community stakeholders. based on our hugely successful two-day Biodiversity Summit in 2015, The Sunshine Coast Biodiversity Strategy sets out a series of goals and objectives and provides a template for action to guide our community in enhancing, conserving and managing biodiversity throughout the SCRD.
The Biodiversity Strategy provides specific objectives for each goal, and outlines key strategies for achieving our goals and objectives. The Strategy represents the first important step towards implementing a community-driven initiative for the whole Sunshine Coast. The next step will be the implementation of a comprehensive Action Plan, which is currently being compiled and will include details of each recommended project, with specific targets, timelines and lead organizations. Find out more here.
The EarthFair Store began at the Iris Griffith Centre, run by the Ruby Lake Lagoon Society. In its early days, the store offered field guides, local guide books, and eco-friendly giftware to visitors. In the summer of 2013, we expanded to our satellite location in Madeira Park after the friendly folks at Bluewaters Books kindly donated their entire store to the Ruby Lake Lagoon Society!
We now carry an even larger array of books, field guides, resources, and gifts for the environmentally conscious individual. Whether you’re a gardener, naturalist, chef, carpenter, adventurer, or just an avid reader, you are sure to find something of interest at the EarthFair Store! With our selection we hope to foster an interest in sustainable, earth-friendly living, and act as a resource in environmental practices for the Sunshine Coast community.
The EarthFair Store is owned and operated by the Ruby Lake Lagoon Nature Reserve Society. All proceeds go to the Society and to the operation of the Iris Griffith Field Studies and Interpretive Centre.
Check out what's in store by visiting our website.
IRIS GRIFFITH CENTRE
Built in 2005, the 2,500 square foot Iris Griffith Interpretive Centre was designed by John Dafoe in collaboration with the Lagoon Society Building Committee and West Coast Log Homes. The centre acts as the home of the Lagoon Society and is our primary location for the outreach, programs, and events we organize.
The Iris Griffith Interpretive Centre serves as the base for many exciting community and school programs. These include our flagship Nature School Program for elementary and secondary school students, along with interpretive programs, workshops, lectures and slideshows and tours for the general community, and adult education courses for university and college students, professionals, hobbyists, and amateur naturalists. A wetland restoration project is helping to create valuable habitat for wildlife and is giving community members a hands-on opportunity to work to improve the environment. During the summer, we hire a number of college students from a variety of disciplines to provide field experience with young kids and the chance to co-ordinate our summer day camp program, the famous Lagoonies.
Thanks to generous grants from groups such as the Real Estate Foundation of BC and Vancity, the Iris Griffith Centre has been retrofitted with green building elements including a water catchment system, solar electric power, a green roof, and a solar water heating system to provide hot water both for in-floor radiant heating and for building hot water supplies. In conjunction with the green building retrofits, and with financial support from the Environment Canada EcoAction Program, we were able to host an education program to inform local residents about energy conservation, alternative technologies, and sustainable living choices. We are continuously looking for new and innovative ways to reduce our impact on the environment, and sharing those ideas with our local community and global visitors.
The Interpretive Centre houses a collection of Displays and Exhibits characterizing human interaction with the natural environment from the mountains down to the sea. It serves as a base for many exciting community and school programs, including children’s activities, adult education courses and workshops, guided nature walks and field trips, slide shows and lectures, public forums, and an innovative Nature School Program for children.
Please visit us! We are located at 15200 Sunshine Coast Highway.
Winter hours: Saturday and Sunday 10am - 4pm
Summer hours: Daily 10am - 4pm
You can also visit our website for details or phone 694-886-9006
24 ACRE NATURE RESERVE
The Lagoon Society manages a nature reserve with a freshwater lagoon, forested acreage, and is home to the Iris Griffith Centre.
The Ruby Lake Lagoon Nature Reserve Society HAS a variety of short walking trails suitable for people of all ages and is also a great resting station for hikers and cyclists passing by on the Suncoaster Trail.
Following our trails and reading the signage around the reserve provide for an excellent self-guided tour of the wild and wonderful world of wetlands. If you are interested in learning more about the area, one of our volunteer docents or staff would be happy to guide you around the area to provide additional knowledge.
In addition to the reserve, which is free for you to enjoy, we also conduct various guided Nature Tours around the Pender Harbour Area. From hikes to Skookumchuck Narrows, to visits to the Egmont Cultural Centre, to guided Mushroom Identification Walks, there is much to learn from those involved with the Ruby Lake Lagoon Society. Keep an eye on our Events Calendar to see what we’re planning next.