Education is key at Three Rivers Park District. Awareness and appreciation of the environment are created through fun and engaging group opportunities. Classroom concepts are reinforced by involving the child in a total learning environment to enhance their ability to think critically and to develop a better understanding of the natural world. Choose from a variety of programs, or speak to staff about other options for your group.
Education To Go
Explore the mysteries of nature and history—any topic, anywhere, anytime. Many programs are tied to seasonal happenings and delivered in classrooms, school nature areas, or other locations. In addition to small-group or classroom-sized programs, assembly programs for larger venues are also available. Choose from a variety of programs (including live animals) or customize one to suit the specific needs of your group. Call 763.559.6700 for more information.
Outdoor Recreation Outreach
Get your group involved with skills-based activities at your location or in the parks with the Outdoor Recreation School. Sign up for one activity or mix and match for either a half or full day of fun. Call 763.694.7717 for more information.
Three Rivers Park District is committed to making programs accessible. With advance notice, we can arrange for sign language interpreters and a wide variety of assisted technology (all-terrain wheel chairs, sound amplifiers, etc.). Financial assistance is available for qualifying groups.
Curriculum at educational facilities supports certain MN K-12 Academic Standards. (Links below are PDFs.)
• Baker Near-Wilderness Settlement – Standards & Program Details
• Coon Rapids Dam Visitor Center – Standards & Program Details
• Eastman Nature Center – Standards & Program Details
• Gale Woods Farm – Standards & Program Details
• Lowry Nature Center – Standards & Program Details
• Outdoor Recreation School – Standards & Program Details
• Richardson Nature Center – Standards & Program Details
• Silverwood Park – Standards & Program Details
• The Landing – Standards & Program Details
Three Rivers nature centers have been favorite destinations for over 40 years. Let the beautiful surrounding trails lead you to a world of discovery!
West Coon Rapids Dam Visitor Center – Perched above the Mississippi River, the visitor center offers an exceptional array of exhibits and material interpreting river habitat.
Eastman Nature Center – Reopened in 2012, this modern facility features quiet reading and observation rooms, a large area for wildlife watching, and professional exhibits.
Lowry Nature Center – Nestled in the middle of Carver Park Reserve, this center features seasonal interpretive displays, live animals, a wildlife viewing area, and two unique play and exploration areas.
Richardson Nature Center – Enjoy colorful clay mosaics and interpretive displays, visit live animals and raptors, or observe birds in the backyard wildlife viewing area.
Baker-Near Wilderness Settlement
The Baker Near-Wilderness Settlement offers guests a unique and inspiring opportunity to become reacquainted with the natural world. The Settlement has eight simply-furnished log cabins for overnight stays and an expansive, multi–purpose lodge.
The Landing - Minnesota River Heritage Park
The Landing brings Minnesota from the 1840–1890s to life. Visitors can step back in time to see more than 40 historic buildings and several homesteads representing the various ethnic groups that settled the Minnesota River Valley. Costumed interpreters provide living-history programs, spin tales, demonstrate hands-on crafts, play music, and depict the daily lives of men, women and children.
Grimm Farm Historical Site
This historical home offers a rare glimpse into farm life during the 1870s. Relive the experiences of the Wendelin Grimm family as they made their way into agricultural history by developing a strain of winter-hardy alfalfa that established the Midwest as America's dairy belt.
Silverwood Park serves as a regional center for the arts and environment. Staff are devoted to the integration of nature-based experiences wtih artistic creation. In addition to creating nature-inspired art, visitors can peruse the art gallery, attend musical and theatrical performances at the outdoor amphitheater.
Gale Woods Farm
Gale Woods Farm is located on the beautiful shores of Whaletail Lake. The year–round educational, working farm provides experiences to foster understanding of agriculture, food production and land stewardship.
Outdoor Recreation School
The Outdoor Recreation School has no boundaries! We go just about anywhere inside Three Rivers Parks and outlying areas to deliver hands-on outdoor activities for secondary schools, homeschools, charter schools, youth agencies, adults and families.