With your help, we’ve protected 363 acres of Bog for future generations of birds and birders!

Signature Events

2017 Boreal Wings Gala

2016 Record-setting Big Year birder, Olaf Danielson to speak

Silent Auction, Appetizers, Mingling, Olaf’s Big Year (photos and talk)

Sunday, January 29, 2017 (2-4pm) at the new Springbrook Nature Center in Fridley, MN


Purchase tickets before Dec. 31 and receive a free calendar or mug (to pick up at the door on the day of the event)

$25 per person (Kids 17 $ under FREE)

Free 2017 Bog Wild Calendar to those registering/paying online here before December 31 (pick up calendar or mug at the door)

(May pay $30 at the door as well)

Join us and other bog buddies for a night of stories, food, and fun!
Sunday, January 29, 2017 (2-4:30 pm)
Springbrook Nature Center, Fridley, MN

Come early to hike/snowshoe/ski the nature center’s many trails!
Also check out the new building and interactive exhibits.
2pm—Appetizers, mingle, silent auction
2:30pm—Sparky updates everyone on Friends of Sax-Zim Bog projects
2:45-3:45 pm—Olaf Danielson speaks about his record setting Big Year in 2016 (photos)
Olaf has had MANY adventures on his Big Year (Do you know what Black Bear breath smells like?) and he’ll share the highs and lows, and the rarest of bird sightings, and stories from the most exotic North American locations. He’ll also have photos to accompany his stories.
3:45-4 pm—Silent Auction wraps up
4-4:30 pm—Mingling, AppetizersIncludes soup/bread dinner, silent auction, films, and a 1-year membership including free programs.

Call Sparky at 218.341.3350 for more info

Many nature-related items to be included in the Silent Auction
This is a Fundraiser for 501c3 non-profit Friends of Sax-Zim Bog to continue to purchase land in the Sax-Zim Bog and preserve it for future generations of birds and birders

Directions to Welcome Center on Owl Avenue

**Open mid December to mid March from 10am-3pm daily

**Also marked on our birding map

 ** Currently, Arkola Road between Poplar Road and Hwy 7 is closed! Please follow Hwy 7 south to Hwy 133 and continue to Meadowlands (directions below) ** 

Directions from Cotton, MN on US53…

*Go West from Cotton on CR52/Arkola for 11 miles

*Turn South (left) on Owl Avenue

*Go 1.75 miles (second curve) to Welcome Center

Directions from Meadowlands, on CR133…

*Go East on CR133 to CR229/29

*Turn North (left) on CR229/29

*Go North to T at Correction Line Rd

*Turn West (left) on Correction Line Rd

*Road curves North and becomes Owl Ave

*Go North on Owl Avenue for 2.5 miles to Welcome Center



BRRRRdathon: World’s Coldest Birdathon

Brrrdathon_logo+Small+400px+72+dpiFriday January 13 and Saturday January 14, 2017

A birdathon in northern Minnesota in January? You’ve got to be kidding! The BRRRRdathon may be the world’s coldest birdathon but it can also be the most exhilarating with the possibility of many boreal specialties in the North Woods. Imagine tallying the likes of Great Gray Owl, Boreal Chickadee, Black-backed Woodpecker, Pine Grosbeak, Bohemian Waxwing, Hoary Redpoll, Gyrfalcon and Northern Hawk Owl in a two-day birding spree! And raising money for Friends of Sax-Zim Bog in the process. Win-win-win!

But the two-day event requires some serious strategizing to maximize your species list. And the playing field is large…all of northeastern Minnesota and northwest Wisconsin. Most species tallied in the two-days wins.

We also have a One-day BRRRRdathon category, and for the hardy (or just plain foolhardy) a Wintergreen event where all birding must be done via non-motorized travel modes (dogsled? snowshoe? bicycle?).

All participants are invited to an awards and compilation dinner on Saturday evening where great food and surprising prizes are awarded. Winning teams and photographers get the honor of having their name memorialized on “Gary the Great Gray Owl,” a solid granite sculpture by Minnesota artist Keith Raivo.

$25 per person per event. This entry fee includes a one-year Friends of Sax-Zim Bog membership (including free field trips for one year!) Also, each participant will receive a free calendar for participating.


Friday Jan 13 to Sat Jan 14, 2017 (Categories: One-Day, Two-Day, WinterGreen (non-motorized)

Register and Pay here

More information

Bog to Ridge BioBlitz V

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Clinton+Nienhaus+Fishes+Bog+BioBlitz+III+IMG_0302+copyThe concept of a bioblitz started a couple decades ago…and for a noble but bittersweet reason; teams of biologists (ornithologists, mammalogists, botanists, lichenologists and so on) were sent to tracts of rainforest jungle that were on the verge of destruction; their mission was to record every living species and every bit of natural history they could before it was lost to humanity forever. The concept evolved in North America to become an educational event where the public can go in the field with a specialist in any one of many disciplines and record what they find and learn about it at the same time.

Friends of Sax-Zim Bog has made this an annual summer event. In 2015 we hosted over 50 folks who went in the field to learn about birds, orchids, butterflies, dragonflies, sedges, moths, wildflowers, fishes and bog ecology. Over 400 species were recorded on that single day in June!


Sax-Zim Bog Winter Bird Festival

This weekend festival is hosted by the Toivola Meadowlands Development Board. It is a full 3-day weekend of field trips, good food, world-class speakers and excellent field trips. It is always held during President’s Day Weekend. Friends of Sax-Zim Bog coordinates the field trips and speakers.

More information at the Bird Festival Website

Things that go Bump, Croak, Hoot & Bump in the Night

Spring in the Bog is full of burgeoning life…and dusk is a great time to SEE and HEAR some of the unique critters. On a evening in early May we listen for the three early frog species, American Bittern, Wilson’s Snipe and search for Great Gray Owls and end with a visit to a “peenting ground” of the American Woodcock. You never know what these late-afternoon-to-dark trips might turn up!

Field Trips

Several field trips are held throughout the year. All are FREE to members (those who’ve donated $20 or more during the last 12-months). Most are birding trips but we hope to add other specialized field trips in the near future. These guided car-caravan tours are a great introduction to the Sax-Zim Bog.

Field trips are posted on our events calendar, on Facebook, and in our e-Newsletter.

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