Park Programs

Our staff regularly visit West Michigan parks and natural areas to conduct programs. We bring the same engaged and energetic attitude to these programs as our other offerings. In most programs, we are share live animals with a group, conduct a nature-themed hike or provide educational opportunities for a natural history topic. If your group is interested in a park program different than what you see listed here, please contact the office. We are happy to work with you to create something new and different.

  • Programs may take place during the weekdays, evenings and/or on weekends
  • Programs can be a captive audience presentation, guided hike, or community event booth
  • Our schedule fills quickly, so plan as many as 12 months out if possible
  • All program materials will be provided by ODCMG
  • Tables and chairs for indoor or stationary presentations are the responsibility of the scheduling entity
  • Program length depends on if it’s a presentation or booth (see below)
  • Travel fees based upon distance traveled from Holland, MI (start at $30 for Ottawa, Allegan and Kent Counties)




  • Captive Audience Presentation ($270 + travel fee)
    • 2-3 naturalist staff
    • Any size group
    • 1-2, 6 foot tables
    • 1 hour presentation
  • Guided Hike ($180 + travel fee)
    • 1-2 naturalist staff
    • groups up to 30 participants
    • materials and program props provided
    • 1-1.5 hour guided hike
  • Community Event Booth ($350 + travel fee)
    • 2-3 naturalist staff
    • live wildlife may include birds of prey, reptiles, and amphibians
    • hands-on artifacts such as skulls, skins, feathers, antlers
    • 1-2, 6 foot tables
    • 1-3 hour booth, $100 each additional hour
    • Add-ons may include: Mobile Watershed Classroom, 10’x10′ tent (please ask about additional fees)

Past Park Programs

Up Close and Wild

Eastern Garter Snake

Eastern Garter Snake

This program focuses on introducing audiences to Michigan wildlife. Live animals including reptiles, amphibians and birds will be used during the presentation. People will learn unique characteristics of animals and how they fit into our diverse ecosystems. Hands-on artifacts include skins, skulls, wings, feathers and talons of several species native to Michigan.

Live Birds of Prey: A Bird's Eye View

Great Horned Owl

Great Horned Owl

The ODC’s collection of live birds of prey is used to highlight the life history of various species including hawks, owls and falcons. All birds used during these programs are non releasable to the wild. Depending on the group size, birds will be walked around the room during the presentation or brought out after the presentation for closer inspection by visitors. Hands-on artifacts include skulls, feathers, pelts, and talons.

Wonderful Wetlands

Dragonfly NymphA wetland is a home for a wide variety of plants and animals. Our staff will share live examples of both vertebrate and invertebrate organisms that can be found in and near wetlands in Michigan. Animals may include toads, frogs, salamanders, fish, leeches, dragonflies, damselflies and more. Throughout the program, our naturalist will offer insight into the life history and habitat of the organisms used. The group will be able to see a number of animals during the presentation part of the program and then have a chance to handle many of them during the exploration time.

Owl Prowl

Barred OwlHike wooded trails in search of resident and migratory owls. The group will try to call in Eastern Screech, Barred and Great Horned Owls as they hike. Captive live birds may be included in this guided hike if facilities are available for a brief introduction to the group. The best season for owl prowls is mid to late winter.