What is an ECO-MEET?

How ECO-MEETS got started

Locations of the ECO-MEETs

When are the ECO-MEETs ?

How ECO-MEET aligns with
state education standards

Regional contact information

2016 Rules, Regulations  NEW!
& Reference materials

How do I claim my scholarship money?

2015 ECO-MEETs

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"To challenge and inspire an interest, appreciation and understanding of the natural sciences and the Kansas environment thru interscholastic competition."

  Location of the ECO-MEETS for 2016 

Locations of 2015 Kansas Eco-Meets


Hays -
Sternberg Museum
October 6
Mike Rader
Wilson -
Wilson State Park
October 5
Ellen Rader  785-658-2465 x200 or
Mike Rader
Salina -
Lakewood Discovery Center
September 29
Brian Underwood
Milford -
Milford Nature Center
September 28
Pat Silovsky
785-238-5323 or
Chuck Otte  
Lawrence -
Prairie Park
Nature Center

October 17
Marty Birrell
Garden City -
Lee Richardson Zoo
October 13

Whitney Buchman
620-276-1250 or
Mike Rader
Hutchinson -
Dillon Nature Center
October 4
Mary Clark or
Steve Kinser
Wichita -
Great Plains Nature Center
October 11
Rachel Roth
316-683-5499 x210
Girard (SE Kansas) -
October 19
Jenn Rader
620-783-5207 or
Mike Rader
Olathe -
Ernie Miller Nature Center
October 26
Bill McGowan
913-764-7759 or
Mike Rader


Ten regional ECO-MEETs are scheduled for 2016.

bulletMilford (Milford Nature Center) - Wednesday, September 28
bulletSalina (Lakewood Discovery Center) - Thursday, September 29
bulletHutchinson (Dillon Nature Center) - Tuesday, October 4
bulletWilson (Wilson Lake) - Wednesday, October 5
bulletHays (Sternberg Museum) - Thursday, October 6
bulletWichita (Great Plains Nature Center) - Tuesday, October 11
bulletGarden City (Lee Richardson Zoo) - Thursday, October 13
bulletLawrence (Prairie Park Nature Center) - Monday, October 17
bulletSoutheast Kansas (Greenbush) - Wednesday, October 19
bulletOlathe (Ernie Miller Nature Center) - Wednesday, October 26

The 2016 KANSAS STATE ECO-MEET will be held on Thursday, November 3.
at Camp Aldrich, near Great Bend
Here are the winners from the 2015 State ECO-MEET!

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What's an ECO-MEET, you say?
Imagine a competition where knowledge of Kansas' wildlife and plants is the key to success! 
The ECO-MEETs offer a chance for the most naturally-qualified  high school students
to show what they know and win scholarships. 

Participants are tested in four areas:

bulletHabitat -  tests integrated knowledge of specific Kansas habitat types. 
The topic area

for 2016 will be Tallgrass Prairie.
bulletFocus test -  tests knowledge of one particular group of animals.  For 2016 the focus topic will be Invertebrates.

Both of these
are lab-type tests.

wildlife quiz
Taking the Quiz - photo by Tom Hein

bulletScavenger Hunt - ability to locate and identify various natural objects. 
This part takes place outside and mainly tests the ability to identify native plants.
bulletInterpretation - ability to communicate ideas to an audience.

It's more than a skit and less than a speech,
with elements of both
- and a lot of fun!

Natural foods?! - photo by Tom Hein

Both team and individual effort are recognized by giving college scholarships to
the members of the top three teams and to the top two individuals in the ecosystem and focus tests.
A little background:

The first ECO-MEETS were held by the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
district of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in 1976. 
ECO-MEETS are still being held there
and the concept has spread to Illinois, Georgia, Maryland and Kansas.

Kansas ECO-MEET History:

bulletThe Kansas ECO-MEETS began in 1991 at the Milford Nature Center near Junction City.  The Milford ECO-MEET draws teams from schools in the adjacent ten-county area.  It became so successful that other areas began having them.
bullet1999 was the first year in Kansas where more than one area had an ECO-MEET.  One was held at Wilson State Park near Russell and one was held at the Great Plains Nature Center in Wichita.  This made it necessary to have a statewide contest to decide who had the best team!
bulletIn 2000, the number of regional ECO-MEETS more than doubled to seven.  In addition to Wichita, Milford and Wilson, new ECO-MEETS were held at Lake Scott, Hays, Hutchinson and Kirwin National Wildlife Refuge.  (This was the only year for the Lake Scott event.)
bulletIn 2001, three new ECO-MEETS were held at Pittsburg, Salina and Pratt, bringing the total to nine.
bulletIn 2002, there were eight regionals ECO-MEETS.
bulletIn 2003, nine regional ECO-MEETS were held as we welcomed Hays back and a new regional at Garden City.
bulletIn 2004, a new ECO-MEET was held in NW Kansas at the Smoky Valley Ranch.
Nine total regional ECO-MEETS were held.
bulletIn 2005, a new ECO-MEET was held in Kansas City at the F.L. Schlagle Library at Wyandotte County Lake.  Eight total regional ECO-MEETS were held.
bulletIn 2006, seven regional ECO-MEETS were held.
bulletIn 2007, seven regional ECO-MEETS were held and we welcomed back the event at Greenbush in Southeast Kansas.
bulletIn 2008, eight regional ECO-MEETS were held, including a new event in Olathe.
bulletIn 2009, eight regional ECO-MEETS were held.
bulletIn 2010-2012, nine regional ECO-MEETS were held, after adding a new event in Lawrence.
bulletIn 2013, eight regional ECO-MEETS were held.
bulletIn 2014, ten regional ECO-MEETS were held.
bullet In 2015, seven regional ECO-MEETS were held.


The seventeenth Kansas statewide ECO-MEET was held at
Camp Wood on November 5, 2015.

Click here to see the winners!

Here are the winners from previous years!

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Questions or comments about the Kansas ECO-MEET website may be directed to: Jim Mason