Why we do it

The answer is as clear as a sunny afternoon on the trail. See the dozens of joggers, bikers, and children walking with parents—all surrounded in natural beauty. You’ll understand.

Native Plants

naturally good neighbors
Over centuries, native plants evolved together with birds, butterflies and other species to create a balanced, healthy environment.

Alien Invasion!

Not little green men, but little green plants from across the seas—often beautiful, but frequently evil. Many are brought here as decorative ground cover. Sometimes they arrive as hitchhikers.

Monarch Hatchery

Observe, both in the wild or at our children-friendly hatchery, the monarch butterfly growing from egg to caterpillar, caterpillar to chrysalis, and chrysalis to majestic monarch.

Volunteer and Support

We need your help. The Friends of the Green Bay Trail is an entirely volunteer organization. Join us when you can.

Upcoming Events

Fun Facts – Did you know?

Hibernating Butterflies

Some species of butterflies hibernate in logs or underneath loose bark on trees and spend the entire winter here. Illinois species, such as Mourning Cloaks, even overwinter as adults. They can sometimes be seen during warm spells in January or February.

Divorce Isn’t Optional

A female praying mantis makes a bad spouse. They behead and eat their husbands as part of their mating ritual.

Vegan Diet

Sugar alone cannot sustain a Monarch. They also need a little spice in the form of minerals. They supplement their nectar diet by occasionally sipping from mud puddles, which are rich in minerals and salt.

SOSA Restoration

The Friends of the Green Bay Trails raised $100,000 to restore the Green Bay Trail south of South Avenue (SOSA) to the Glencoe Community Garden north of Harbor Street. Find out more about the SOSA Restoration.

Views from the Trail Videos

We are pleased to showcase two videos in the Gallery – “A Summer’s Day on the Trail” and “Scenes from the Trail.”

What we do


We are environmental stewards of the Green Bay Trail, restoring a natural,  prairie eco-system. Our goal is to make the trail a national example of the healthy intersection of nature and culture that inspires community and individual well-being. LEARN MORE

Native Keystone Plants for Wildlife

Garden for Wildlife

About Native Plants

From the Field Museum

The Green Bay Trail is on the Map!

The Green Bay Trail has met the Homegrown National Park challenge. The Trail’s restoration showcases results achieved by implementing practices advocated by the Homegrown National Park initiative.

Homegrown National Park  cofounders Doug Tallamy, author of Bringing Nature Home, and  Michelle Alfandari,  advocate using public and private spaces to support and expand biodiversity; “In the past, we have asked one thing of our gardens: that they be pretty. Now they have to support life, sequester carbon, feed pollinators, and manage water.”

83% of U.S. land is privately owned.  Tallamy and Alfandari  challenge property owners to select ecologically effective plants, shrink lawn size and remove invasives on these  sites. These efforts will significantly restore the needed diversity to offset increasing climate change impacts.

*Accept the challenge. Start this fall and view the results next spring.

Get on the Map
Become a Homegrown National Park

A Trail for all Seasons

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