Field Notes

May 16, 2019

The Lilly Center Thanks Generous Partners for their Continued Support

This spring marks another successful year of the Lilly Center for Lakes & Streams’ K-12 programs. The annual art contest, Classroom Lake Experience, Lake Adventure Days, aquatic petting zoos and inaugural in-house field trips served over 3,700 students throughout Kosciusko County. The programs would not be possible without the Lilly Center’s generous partners.

Lakes & Streams Art Contest

The 11th-annual art contest had 28 winners and runners-up. Altogether, 254 young people contributed artwork, ranging from fourth-to-12th grade and spanning almost every school district across Kosciusko County. A special thanks goes to the 2018-19 sponsors, including: City of Warsaw Stormwater Utility, Clearwater Car Wash, Didage, Kay Young – Todd Realty, Kosciusko Community Hospital, Medtronic, The Dekko Foundation, The Papers, The Watershed Foundation, and Zimmer Biomet.

Classroom Lake Experience

Classroom Lake Experience helped enhance an elementary classrooms’ existing curriculum. At the start of the 2018-19 school year, over 30, 40-gallon aquariums were taken to classrooms and reception areas in elementary schools throughout the county. More than 2,175 students learned about native fish, their habitats and related topics. Generous sponsors include: Cargill, City of Warsaw Stormwater Utility, Clearwater Car Wash, CTB, Inc., Hand Family Foundation, Paragon Medical, Inc., Syracuse Lake Association, The Dekko Foundation, The Papers, Warsaw Optimist Club, Wawasee Area Conservancy Foundation, Wawasee Middle School, Wawasee Property Owners Association, Winona Lake Preservation Association, and Zimmer Biomet.

Aquatic Petting Zoo

The aquatic petting zoo taught elementary students about several animals, including catfish, crayfish, frogs and turtles. Using interactive stations for each animal, 336 students observed and touched the native species during the 2018-19 school year. The aquatic petting zoo program is sponsored by Anderson Farms, Clearwater Car Wash, The Dekko Foundation, The Papers, and Zimmer Biomet.

Lake Adventure Days

During the Lilly Center for Lakes & Streams’ annual Lake Adventure Days, held Sept. 24-25, 2018, 677 students visited a local lake, some for the very first time. On the two-day field trip, students did water tests, built mini-watersheds, created a water-themed craft and more. Lake Adventure Days is sponsored by Bart’s Water Sports, City of Warsaw Stormwater Utility, DePuy Synthes, Lake City Bank, Lake Tippecanoe Property Owners, The Dekko Foundation, The Papers, Warsaw Kiwanis, Warsaw Optimist Club, and Zimmer Biomet.

In-House Field Trips

New this year, the Lilly Center hosted classrooms of K-12 students in the Dr. Dane A. Miller Science Complex, the center’s new home on Grace College’s campus. These field trips to the Lilly Center allowed over 260 students to participate in activities ranging from discussions about watersheds using an augmented reality sand table to learning about fish adaptations on a virtual aquarium. Students were also given the opportunity to see live fish up close at the Lilly Center’s display tanks, featuring dozens of native species.

Want to support these programs? Contact Alex Hall, assistant director at the Lilly Center, at Or, visit to get involved.