The long range vision of the Marine Discovery Center is to see a healthy Indian River Lagoon Estuary (IRL) and the ecosystem it supports preserved and enjoyed for its natural beauty, unmatched diversity of species and rich fishery for generations to come. Initiatives and activities designed to achieve this vision include providing education, research, restoration and heightened public awareness of this wondrous, fragile natural resource.
The Shingle Creek Regional Park offers a unique blend of nature and history in a setting quietly hidden within an urban area. Approximately 200 acres are accessible as of January 2009’s opening. Located just minutes from the busy tourist corridor of U.S. Highway 192, the park is in the middle of a destination that offers a myriad of accommodations with direct access to the Walt Disney World Resort as well as other local attractions. The park will allow visitor to experience vivid encounters with a wild and vanishing Florida.
The Ed Yarborough Nature Center at the Geneva Wilderness Area was established with the mission to learn about nature by experiencing it. It features exhibits and displays that highlight the diverse ecology of Central Florida. Classes can learn about native wildlife, conservation, and biodiversity, or they may learn about land management by identifying native and nonnative flora and fauna. This is a facility that hosts environmental education and outreach for schools, private and public programs, and a summer Eco Camp program.
Oakland Nature Preserve encompasses 128 acres of land- 48 acres of uplands and 80 acres of forested wetlands, including a boardwalk to Lake Apopka. We have a classroom-sized pavilion on the lakefront as well as a pavilion on the West Orange Trail. Interpretive signs throughout the Preserve help visitors identify plants species, while our log cabin-style Education Center, modeled after a pioneer homestead, includes a classroom, museum, office, and restrooms. The Preserve also offers recreational and educational opportunities through archery programs and live animals in the classroom!
Located 7 miles north of Brooksville, Chinsegut Conservation Center covers 408 of the 850 acres comprising Chinsegut Wildlife and Environmental Area (WEA) and is managed by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. The Center hosts many educational programs and hikes throughout the year. To preserve the beauty of the area, the center is open to the public only during scheduled programs or by appointment.
While offering some of the best quail habitat and upland bird hunting in North Central Florida, they are not a commercial quail hunting preserve with multiple parties hunting the same properties. In fact, it is a small family run operation. Therefore, guests will have unlimited access to their own private area and one on one attention from the experienced guides. Also provided is pheasant hunting for a change of pace. Add a little good old southern hospitality & some home cooking’ and the trip is sure to be memorable, enjoyable & productive.
Bear Creek Educational Forest is a 492-acre tract of Lake Talquin State Forest. Programs are FREE for any public or private school group, Scout troop, daycare, or any other youth organization. Each program option may include a lesson, game, and hands-on activity in the forest. An interpretive hike and souvenir craft to make and take home may also be included. The Bear Creek Tract also offers hiking and camping opportunities as well as the audio enhanced Living Forest trail where the trees tell their own stories.
Joe Budd Youth Conservation Center (JBYCC) is 12,000 pristine North Florida acres located just outside Tallahassee. We host summer day camps June through August and school year programs for families and classrooms August through May. Our school year programs include fields trips, night hikes, public events, and retreats, including classroom and outdoor hands-on learning for kids of all ages.