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Big Things are Coming to Outdoor Discovery Center!

Help us raise $100,000 to support our mission!

ODC Network exists to make connections to nature possible. At the heart of our mission lies the knowledge that nature is a powerful catalyst for fostering curiosity, clearing the mind, and promoting overall well-being.

Our team served nearly 200,000 people through programs and site visitation in 2023. This is why we are committed to maintaining free admission to our nature preserves, ensuring that everyone, regardless of their background, has access to the transformative benefits of the great outdoors. We are excited to share some upcoming enhancements at one of our eight preserves, the Outdoor Discovery Center.

The additions below are necessary to meet this growing demand for outdoor education and conservation. These projects will elevate the experience for all West Michigan community members who visit or participate in a program.

Projects to Improve Visitor Experience at ODC

Marc & Leslie Brown Family Nature Plaza

A hub creating a welcoming experience for visitors and groups

Enhancing Visitor Experience

The Nature Plaza will allow for better customer service for visitors by creating an accessible connection point from our Visitor Center and parking lot. Our team built a paved path that leads to a seating wall for program orientation and guests wanting to take a break. 

Imagination Forest Transformation

Original Play Area Renovation

Built in 2006, Imagination Forest has evolved with minor improvements. In 2017, the addition of the Eldean Family Nature Play Park made it obsolete. This area of the preserve will be fully transformed with the addition of more large fiberglass animals, similar to the Green Frog, for kids to climb on and be photographed with. Our team will also install a new water feature made of rocks, sand, and a stream.

An overhaul of the original play area for our smallest explorers

Northern Gateway and Trailhead

A new access point tothe De Witt Birds of Prey Center and ODC trails

Northern Access Point

As we continue to remove barriers to make nature accessible to all, we must consider trail and amenity access. We recently purchased a section of property along the northern border of Outdoor Discovery Center, with this property we built an accessible parking area and trail connecting to our current trail system. Visitors will have a safe access to the De Witt Birds of Prey Center and ODC trails.

Thanks to key stakeholders, visitors of ODC Network, you will see these improvements at the Outdoor Discovery Center in 2024! 

Help us raise $100,000 to support our mission!

With YOUR investment, you can ensure all ODC nature preserves stay free and open to the public every day of the year.

To recognize your generosity, gifts of
$1,000+ will be listed on appropriate signage
$2,500+ bench names in honor of family, friend, or business

For more information, please email Ashley VanZee or call (616) 368-9289