Yesterday we had the great opportunity of exploring the Environmental Nature Center. What a gem of a facility. The center's building is the first LEED Green Building in Orange County built using recycled materials and solar panels and includes a natural ventilation system which eliminates the need for air conditioning. They really are showing the community a great example of how these changes can really benefit the environment.
Inside the ENC there are so many hands on displays to keep kids engaged and my kids had so much fun playing the games on display which were common among the native indigenous people so long ago. There are stations which show the wildlife such as coyotes, foxes, live snakes (the snakes were not my favorite particularly but the kids loved them), and different species of toads and insects. There are examples of the different plant species that are native of California.
As you head outside for the trails, which are host to the several different ecological areas native to California such as Desert, Wetlands, Woodlands, Forest, Valley Grassland, and Channel Island Flores, along with many more, you will find the Butterfly House which is a greenhouse that contains native species of butterflies at their various stages of life and the plant life they live from.
The staff at the ENC were the most friendly volunteer bunch I have met. They were so informative and genuinely involved in a cause they truly believe in. This just makes their passion for teaching so much easier to absorb and love as well. The best part of this center is that admission is FREE! They have several programs and events throughout the year which include Nature Walks, a Fall Faire and Pumpkin Patch and Family Wilderness Survival Classes. You can find out more about this center by clicking here.
Happy Nature Trails!