Nature Centers

Missouri's nature and interpretive centers help you and your family connect with nature in a variety of ways.

  • Take a walk on an interpretive trail or nature trail.
  • Learn about wildlife through live exhibits.
  • Attend workshops or classes on a multitude of topics, including outdoor skills.

Nature Center Events

Date: Thursday, December 20, 2018 - 8:00am to Tuesday, January 22, 2019 - 12:00pm

Location: Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center

Trail Tales features a children’s book along the trail. Read, move, and play as you visit and engage in suggested activities at each stop. Both children and adults will love to play in nature this way!

Discover Nature with Trail Tales this month on Tanglevine Trail!

Date: Wednesday, January 2, 2019 - 8:00am to Friday, November 1, 2019 - 8:00pm

Location: Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center

Powder Valley Photo Contest
Powder Valley wants to see what our visitors love about discovering nature! This photo contest is for amateur photographers (all ages). It is free and open to all visitors of Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center, Emmenegger Nature Park & Possum Woods, and Claire Gempp Davidson Memorial Wildlife Area. Deadline for all entries will be November 1, 2019. Winners will be announced in a Missouri Department of Conservation press release and displayed at Powder Valley in February 2020. For more details and an entry form, please contact Shelly Colatskie at shelly.colatskie@mdc.mo.gov , 314-301-1506 ex 4222 or stop by and pick one up at the front desk.

Date: Wednesday, January 2, 2019 - 3:00pm to Wednesday, January 30, 2019 - 3:30pm

Location: Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center

Walk-in (all ages)
Discover what’s for dinner at Burr Oak Woods as the captive amphibians, fish and turtles enjoy their feast every Wednesday and Saturday.

Date: Friday, January 4, 2019 - 3:00pm to Friday, January 18, 2019 - 3:30pm

Location: Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center

Walk-in (all ages)
Discover what’s for dinner at Burr Oak Woods as the captive snakes enjoy their feast every other Friday.

Date: Wednesday, January 16, 2019 - 10:00am to 10:45am

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

Chickadees are charmingly fun birds that often visit bird feeders in winter. Flutter on over to learn more about these little friends and make a charming craft to take home. Please, no organized groups.

Date: Wednesday, January 16, 2019 - 11:15am to 12:00pm

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

Chickadees are charmingly fun birds that often visit bird feeders in winter. Flutter on over to learn more about these little friends and make a charming craft to take home. Please, no organized groups.

Register by January 16

Date: Wednesday, January 16, 2019 - 1:00pm to 2:30pm

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Missouri is home to nearly 70 species of mammals! Find out what these furry creatures have in common and learn about some of our more unique species. You will also get a chance to identify some mammals using their skulls. Program is free

Register by January 17

Date: Thursday, January 17, 2019 - 10:00am to 11:30am

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Missouri is home to nearly 70 species of mammals! Find out what these furry creatures have in common and learn about some of our more unique species. Program is free.

Date: Thursday, January 17, 2019 - 10:30am to 12:00pm

Location: Runge Conservation Nature Center

No registration required (Ages 18+ years).
The Needlers are starting a new year and a new theme for 2019 - butterflies! Each month we will learn about a particular butterfly and have a quilt block pattern depicting its coloration. Applique and embroidery patterns are also provided. Come and share quilting tips and stories with others.

Register by January 17

Date: Thursday, January 17, 2019 - 1:00pm to 2:30pm

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Missouri is home to nearly 70 species of mammals! Find out what these furry creatures have in common and learn about some of our more unique species. Program is free.

Date: Thursday, January 17, 2019 - 6:00pm to 7:30pm

Location: Runge Conservation Nature Center

No registration required (Ages 18+ years).
The Needlers are starting a new year and a new theme for 2019 - butterflies! Each month we will learn about a particular butterfly and have a quilt block pattern depicting its coloration. Applique and embroidery patterns are also provided. Come and share quilting tips and stories with others.

Register by January 18

Date: Friday, January 18, 2019 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Like to hunt or fish but don’t know how to use the bounty? Join us as we demonstrate how to clean and fillet a fish, talk about safe processing, and let you try your hand at cooking with venison. Afterwards, you’ll have a chance to sample a variety of dishes made by staff and volunteers. A cookbook of favorite recipes will be available to take home. Ages 10-17 welcome with a registered accompanying adult. Program is free. FISH

Date: Friday, January 18, 2019 - 7:00pm to 9:00pm

Location: Runge Conservation Nature Center

No registration required.
Bundle up and join us for a naturalist led night hike followed by hot chocolate and stories by the fire. We will provide headlamps/flashlights. Bring a chair, wear sturdy shoes, and dress for the weather.

Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019 - 9:00am to 4:00pm

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

We’re celebrating the annual return of bald eagles to Lake Springfield. This special event includes the indoor presence of Phoenix, a live bald eagle from Dickerson Park Zoo. Programs will be held at the Springfield Conservation Nature Center every hour on the hour from 9 am to 3 pm. Stop by anytime and plan to spend about two hours. Opportunities to view bald eagles in the wild, with the assistance of volunteers and spotting scopes, will be available at the Lake Springfield Boathouse and Marina during event hours. All ages. No registration required. Call 417-888-4237 for more information.

Register by January 19

Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019 - 9:00am to 9:30am

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

It was just a little bit of luck that they were born a baby duck! Missouri is home to all sorts of ducks who whistle, quack, wheeze, and cackle. Learn about these feathered swimmers with us. Program is free.

Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019 - 9:00am to 3:00pm

Location: Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center

This Program is held at the Old Chain of Rocks Bridge.

Register by January 19

Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019 - 10:00am to 11:30am

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Have you ever wondered what kind of critters live in caves? How do they live in the dark and what do they eat? Come join us on an expedition to learn about the amazing world below us and the cool creatures that live in it. Program is free. FISH

Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019 - 10:00am to 11:00am

Location: Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center

Walk-in (ages 3-8; all welcome) Join volunteer naturalists for a fantastic journey through forests, streams and other magical places as they read select books. Children will participate in a hands-on nature activity.

Register by January 19

Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019 - 10:00am to 10:30am

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

It was just a little bit of luck that they were born a baby duck! Missouri is home to all sorts of ducks who whistle, quack, wheeze, and cackle. Learn about these feathered swimmers with us. Program is free.

Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019 - 10:00am to 2:30pm

Location: Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center

Walk-in (all ages) Nature provides incredible inspiration and one-of-a-kind art supplies. Join us as we explore the forest area at the Discovery Center and gather stems, dried leaves, dried berries, nuts, grasses, feathers and other winter treasures. Step back inside to learn how to make uniquely textured paintbrushes and explore your creative side as you create your own unique nature art!

Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019 - 11:00am to 1:00pm

Location: Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center

Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019 - 11:00am to 12:00pm

Location: Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center

Walk-in (ages 3-8; all welcome) Join volunteer naturalists for a fantastic journey through forests, streams and other magical places as they read select books. Children will participate in a hands-on nature activity.

Register by January 19

Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019 - 1:00pm to 4:00pm

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Native plants are not only beautiful but have many purposes. Many have healing qualities that can be used for gardening and outdoor woes. This hands-on class will include information about plants that can help with bug bites, sunburn, poison ivy, and other complaints. Program is free.

Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019 - 1:00pm to 2:30pm

Location: Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center

No registration required (all ages)
Slither in and discover the incredible world of Missouri’s snakes. These legless, scaly reptiles are often misunderstood, but are beneficial to the environment and to us. Join us to untangle snake myths, learn who lives around us, and meet some live snakes up close.

Date: Saturday, January 19, 2019 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm

Location: Anita B. Gorman Conservation Discovery Center

Walk-in (ages 3-8; all welcome) Join volunteer naturalists for a fantastic journey through forests, streams and other magical places as they read select books. Children will participate in a hands-on nature activity.

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