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: Saturday, December 1, 2018 - 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 December 1

Date: Saturday, December 1, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:30pm

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Registration begins November 15 (ages 18+)
Deck the halls with boughs of holly…the holidays are just around the corner and we’re in the mood to decorate! We’ll use nature’s resources to create wonderful winter wreaths, swags, and garlands. You provide a grapevine wreath (you choose the size and shape you want), and we’ll provide everything else to do your decorating.
Sessions are 1.5 hours long. Tools will be provided (pruners, pliers and wire cutters). Some gloves will be available but you may want to bring your own leather or garden gloves. You may bring your own tools if you wish. Participants need to bring their own grapevine wreath.

Date: Saturday, December 1, 2018 - 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.

Register by November 30

Date: Saturday, December 1, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:30pm

Location: Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center

Registration required on-line beginning November 1 (adults) Celebrate the season by crafting a natural wreath! Evergreens, pine cones and many other natural trimmings will be provided. Please bring a small wire or grape vine wreath as a base for your creation and any additional special decorations you wish to include.

Date: Saturday, December 1, 2018 - 3:00pm to Saturday, December 29, 2018 - 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.

Register by December 1

Date: Saturday, December 1, 2018 - 3:00pm to 4:30pm

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Registration begins November 15 (ages 18+)
Deck the halls with boughs of holly…the holidays are just around the corner and we’re in the mood to decorate! We’ll use nature’s resources to create wonderful winter wreaths, swags, and garlands. You provide a grapevine wreath (you choose the size and shape you want), and we’ll provide everything else to do your decorating.
Sessions are 1.5 hours long. Tools will be provided (pruners, pliers and wire cutters). Some gloves will be available but you may want to bring your own leather or garden gloves. You may bring your own tools if you wish. Participants need to bring their own grapevine wreath.

Date: Wednesday, December 5, 2018 - 10:00am to 10:45am

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

Many birds fly south seeking warmer weather in the winter, but not Missouri’s wonderful woodpeckers. Fly on in to learn more about these “hardheaded” birds and how to attract them to your yard during the cold winter months. Please, no organized groups.

Date: Wednesday, December 5, 2018 - 11:15am to 12:00pm

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

Many birds fly south seeking warmer weather in the winter, but not Missouri’s wonderful woodpeckers. Fly on in to learn more about these “hardheaded” birds and how to attract them to your yard during the cold winter months. Please, no organized groups.

Register by December 4

Date: Thursday, December 6, 2018 - 10:30am to 12:00pm

Location: Twin Pines Conservation Education Center

Nature’s prairies are a feast for the eyes. Join the Twin Pines staff and learn about the variety of plants that decorate these native grasslands while you create a quilt block based on the blazing star. This session is the third in a series of programs on Missouri prairies that is designed to provide the participant with “prairie” themed blocks for a quilt. This program is for ages 16 and up. Under 18 must have a parent or guardian present. Reservations are required. Reservations can be made on-line at www.mdc.mo.gov\twinpines or by calling 888-283-0364. For further information call 573-325-1381.

Date: Thursday, December 6, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

No registration required (all ages) Program is free.
Ever wonder what it takes to keep all the nature center reptiles, amphibians, and fish happy? Thanks to some amazing animal care volunteers, they are fed a delicious smorgasbord of crickets, worms, minnows, and more! Drop by to visit with the volunteers and staff as they feed the hungry critters. Youth and adult groups welcome.

Register by December 4

Date: Thursday, December 6, 2018 - 5:00pm to 6:30pm

Location: Twin Pines Conservation Education Center

Nature’s prairies are a feast for the eyes. Join the Twin Pines staff and learn about the variety of plants that decorate these native grasslands while you create a quilt block based on the blazing star. This session is the third in a series of programs on Missouri prairies that is designed to provide the participant with “prairie” themed blocks for a quilt. This program is for ages 16 and up. Under 18 must have a parent or guardian present. Reservations are required. Reservations can be made on-line at www.mdc.mo.gov\twinpines or by calling 888-283-0364. For further information call 573-325-1381.

Date: Friday, December 7, 2018 - 3:00pm to Friday, December 21, 2018 - 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 week.

Register by December 7

Date: Friday, December 7, 2018 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

Before or after taking a stroll outdoors, enjoy the scenic photography of nationally known nature photographer Tim Ernst as he returns to share images of ten years of nature photography from the natural state. Tim will be available for a book signing from 6-7 pm and 8-9 pm. Visit Tim’s website at TimErnst.com. All ages.

Register by December 7

Date: Friday, December 7, 2018 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Christmas offers so many wonderful opportunities to create memories! We will make a few while we enjoy the winter weather around a warm campfire. We will prepare some Christmas treats using a variety of campfire techniques. Come enjoy a cup of hot chocolate and learn how to cook a meal your family will remember. Program is free.

Date: Friday, December 7, 2018 - 6:00pm to 9:00pm

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

You’ve seen the fancy flashing light displays all over town-now come out for a quieter, old-fashioned holiday evening. Enjoy a crackling fire, sip hot chocolate, and browse through the gift shop and exhibits when you come indoors to get warm. The trails will be open and patrolled, so bring a flashlight and a walking partner because you’re on your own.

Register by December 7

Date: Friday, December 7, 2018 - 7:00pm to 8:00pm

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

Before or after taking a stroll outdoors, enjoy the scenic photography of nationally known nature photographer Tim Ernst as he returns to share images of ten years of nature photography from the natural state. Tim will be available for a book signing from 6-7 pm and 8-9 pm. Visit Tim’s website at TimErnst.com. All ages.

Register by December 8

Date: Saturday, December 8, 2018 - 10:00am to 11:00am

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Birds of a feather flock to the feeders during the cold winter months. Learn about some special birds that we only see in the winter season and make a simple bird feeder to take home.
Ages 3–6. Registration begins November 15.

Register by December 8

Date: Saturday, December 8, 2018 - 10:00am to 11:30am

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

It’s the time of year for gift giving! Use nature as an inspiration to make a few gifts for your loved ones. To keep it a surprise, parents won’t be allowed to join. Parents may drop participants off at 10 AM and should return by 11:30 AM.
Registration begins November 15 (ages 7-11)

Register by December 8

Date: Saturday, December 8, 2018 - 11:30am to 12:30pm

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Birds of a feather flock to the feeders during the cold winter months. Learn about some special birds that we only see in the winter season and make a simple bird feeder to take home.
Ages 3–6. Registration begins November 15.

Date: Saturday, December 8, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm

Location: Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center

No registration required (all ages) Bald Eagles are a powerful force in nature. Some stay in Missouri all year, but many more come to our state during the cold winter months to find food. Discover where you can go to see Bald Eagles in the wild.

Register by December 11

Date: Tuesday, December 11, 2018 - 9:00am to 10:00am

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Birds of a feather flock to the feeders during the cold winter months. Learn about some special birds that we only see in the winter season and make a simple bird feeder to take home.
Ages 3–6. Registration begins November 15.

Register by December 11

Date: Tuesday, December 11, 2018 - 10:30am to 11:30am

Location: Cape Girardeau Nature Center

Birds of a feather flock to the feeders during the cold winter months. Learn about some special birds that we only see in the winter season and make a simple bird feeder to take home.
Ages 3–6. Registration begins November 15.

Register by December 11

Date: Tuesday, December 11, 2018 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm

Location: Springfield Conservation Nature Center

Hey, kids! Here’s your chance to make some presents out of natural and recycled items. Drop by anytime and plan to spend at least an hour during this special meeting date and time. Bring a sack and lots of creativity. All other items will be provided. Please, no younger siblings and only one adult per group of kids.

Register by December 12

Date: Wednesday, December 12, 2018 - 10:00am to 11:00am

Location: Powder Valley Conservation Nature Center

You and Me under the Canopy: Winter Animals
December 12th • Wednesday • 10am-11am
(Ages 3 to 6)
Reservations begin November 28th.
Come see the topic we are exploring this month. Families, meet in the nature center lobby for a “nature” adventure. Everyone will hike with the naturalist to a special place in the forest and enjoy a nature story under the tree canopy. Siblings are welcome.

Register by December 11

Date: Wednesday, December 12, 2018 - 10:00am to 11:00am

Location: Burr Oak Woods Conservation Nature Center

Registration required on-line for youngster only (ages 3–5 with an adult) Missouri is a winter home to many kinds of ducks and geese. Find out how and why some migrate. Children will learn how to identify them by sight and sound, and then become scientists to discover how the right mix of feathers and oil help them to survive even in the coldest winter.

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