North Park Village Nature Center. A real treasure!

April 21, 2010 at 10:51 PM Leave a comment

Pond and Waterfall

Flowering Pear Trees and Chapel

North Park Village Nature Center

Last Friday I went on a nature walk around the North Park Village Nature center.  It was a beautiful spring day.  There were lots of flowering trees,  Virginia Bluebells.  For those of you old enough to remember, this used to be the Municipal Tuberculosis Sanitarium.  It closed in the 1970’s and the city bought the land.   There was some controversy surrounding this purchase because the city wanted to sell the property to a developer to put up a shopping mall.  City residents protested so much that  the Mayor agreed to keep it as a nature center in return for making a small portion available for developers.  It turned out to be a very good deal for the residents of Chicago and also for the lucky people who actually live on the Bryn Mawr side.   There is a very beautiful stacked stone lagoon and

Virginia Bluebells in bloom

waterfall where lots of ducks (geese?) were swimming and sunning themselves.  There are also a lot of deer there and they are not very shy of people.

I found a very good first person account of the place.

From the Park District web site:

Park Description

North Park Village Nature Center is located on the northwest side of Chicago and includes a forty-six acre nature preserve and also an educational facility. The Nature Center and preserve are situated within the North Park Village complex, a cluster of buildings located on approximately 155 acres of land.

The nature preserve features trails that wind through woodlands, wetlands, prairie and savannas. A discovery room, a hands-on table of natural objects and interactive displays are highlights of the Nature Center. Programs offered include public programs for pre-schoolers, school age children, families and adults; an eco-explorers summer camp and outreach programs.

Open 7 Days a Week, 362 Days a Year!
(closed Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day)
10:00 am – 4:00 pm

The mission of the North Park Village Nature Center is to provide urban citizens with an opportunity to interact with wildlife, plants and other natural resources through environmental education and access to improved natural landscapes.

There are plenty of opportunities to learn about and enjoy the riches of nature at the only Nature Center in Chicago – please come for a visit!

For a map of the Nature Center, click here.

To view a copy of the current Urban Naturalist Newletter, the quarterly Nature Newsletter of the Chicago Park District, click on the full issue, or the separate articles, as listed below.


Entry filed under: Neighborhood News.

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