In Cedar Rapids, you don’t have to go far to get a taste of nature. Just a few miles outside of the city center, visitors will find an outdoor oasis at Indian Creek Nature Center, home to 500 acres of natural prairie, woodlands, wetlands and wildlife.
Wander the extensive trail system, play in the Hazelnut Hideaway outdoor play area or explore the Amazing Space facility that opened September 2016.
Amazing Space is currently one of the most environmentally sustainable buildings in the country, and the Nature Center hopes to achieve the Living Building Challenge — a rigorous certification that requires them to produce more energy than they use, collect and treat all water on site and connect occupants to nature — which aligns perfectly with their mission: to create champions of nature.
The Nature Center strives to connect people to nature as early and as frequently as possible so that they will become the next generation of environmental stewards. People who are passionate about nature understand its importance and will work to protect it, they believe.
“We all need nature,” said Indian Creek’s marketing & development manager, Lindsey Flannery.
“As humans, we evolved in nature," she continued. "We’re not used to being in a built environment. We feel better when we spend time outside. It has a calming effect on the body. And when it comes to kids, they learn better outdoors, where they can use all their senses. It becomes fun that way.”
Almost every day there’s something going on at the Nature Center. Whether it’s a field trip or class, summer camp, group hike, bird watching, moonlit meditation, outdoor yoga, concerts in the outdoor amphitheater, snowshoeing or skiing in the winter or one of the many other activities offered, there’s always something to do, no matter the season. In fact, it’s likely to never be the same visit.
Visit indiancreeknaturecenter.org for more information on all that the Nature Center has to offer.
Indian Creek Nature Center
5300 Otis Road SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403