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Lime Creek Nature Center planning major exhibit renovation


This news story was published on December 21, 2018.
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By Todd Von Ehwegen, Conservation Education Manager
Cerro Gordo County Conservation Board

MASON CITY – The Lime Creek Nature Center has served as an important fixture of conservation education and outdoor recreation in North Iowa since 1984. The nature center facility has been a popular destination to thousands of visitors during these years, but our displays and exhibit themes are aging and becoming outdated. To continue to serve as an effective and vibrant conservation education facility, we have initiated a major display renovation project that will involve the installation of a variety of new exhibits on the main floor.

Taylor Studios of Rantoul, Illinois has been contracted for the project, with a completion date slated for December of 2019. Lime Creek and Taylor Studios staff are currently in the process of planning and designing the new exhibits.

This upgrade will enhance and improve educational opportunities at the center, with museum-quality professional exhibits that better utilize space and provide interactive learning opportunities for the visitor. New exhibits will interpret the unique features and history of the Lime Creek Conservation Area, providing an engaging educational experience that will also encourage the visitor to go outside and explore this natural area.

The goals of this project are to promote an understanding of and interest in natural resources and unique features of this site; expand learning opportunities for all ages with more engaging and interactive exhibit design; and to make Lime Creek Nature Center a top destination site that visitors want to see and return to.

When the Lime Creek Nature Center opened in 1984 it was one of the first nature centers in Iowa. The entire cost of the project was funded by tremendous community support in the form of foundation grants, civic group contributions, private donations, and volunteer labor.

For this $386,000 exhibit renovation project we are again counting on support from the North Iowa community. A large portion of the funding will be provided by the Maxine Sanberg Memorial Fund and several other generous gifts from private donors. Our goal is to raise another $100,000 to fund the remaining portion of the project. To date we have already received $19,100 towards this goal!

To donate toward the project mail a check made out to Lime Creek Nature Center, c/o exhibit renovation project to: Lime Creek Nature Center, 3501 Lime Creek Road, Mason City, IA. 50401; or stop by our office during our regular office hours to make a donation.

Donations can be accepted “in memory of” or “in honor of” individuals. Donors will be recognized in future editions of our newsletter and on our website unless they wish to remain anonymous.

In October Lime Creek and Taylor Studios staff spent two days hashing out exhibit details, and as a result we have our first rough conceptual drawings! These drawings can be viewed on our website at:

https://www.cgcounty.org/departments/conservation/lime-creek (exhibit renovation project). This is the “go to” page to stay updated on the project and check on our fundraising progress.

This project will ensure that the Lime Creek Nature Center remains a vital asset to conservation education, outdoor recreation, and quality of life in North Iowa. For more information call 641-423-5309.

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