Reimagined nature haven in our communityA New Nature MuseumDonate

The New Nature Museum

With a focus on the Piedmont, the new Museum will feature live animals native to our region and outdoor experiences that take advantage of its forest location. It will be reoriented toward Freedom Park and the Greenway, which allows the new Discovery Place Nature to provide greater public amenities, including gardens and a community plaza.


Otters: The Piedmont’s Playful Resident

North American River Otters are the signature animal ambassador for the Museum. They will surprise and delight guests of all ages, as they swim, dig, and play in a beautiful outdoor habitat designed to reflect their natural environment and enrichment needs.

Tree Canopy Walk

The Museum’s signature outdoor experience, the Tree Canopy Walk sits 20-40 feet above the forest floor, weaving through the tree canopy to offer a view of nature rarely experienced by humans.


From box turtles to snapping turtles, several native species call the Piedmont their home. In the Piedmont Explorations gallery, guests will be able to view snapping and softshell turtles upclose and learn more about their habitats.


This is where nature learning begins for the Museum’s youngest guests (ages 0-6). Rich in color, light and texture, Saplings is an exploratory space supporting cognitive and physical growth through elements found in nature.

Piedmont Explorations

Get nose-to-nose with freshwater fish, reptiles, amphibians and insects native to the Piedmont while musing on the ways in which we relate to nature and work to sustain it in the Museum’s main exhibit hall.

Naturalist Lab

The Naturalist Lab is where your nature-based learning takes center stage through design challenges, science experiments, music and art. It’s a space that offers different ways of knowing and experiencing nature.

The Nest

The Canopy Walk allows guests to take a walk through the tree canopy, encountering two feature experiences along the way. The Climber and the Nest afford unique views and vantage points, from lying back to cloud gaze to climbing a bit higher to catch a glimpse of the Charlotte skyline.

Frog Bog

Nestled within the Woodland Garden is the Frog Bog—a small pond dotted by floral aquatic plants with tadpoles and frogs. As the Museum’s “front yard,” it will be free for Freedom Park visitors to explore.

Sustainability and Environmental Stewardship

Throughout their Museum journey, guests will reflect on their feelings, actions, and understanding of the natural world to consider what choices, including sustainable practices, they can implement in their daily lives that support a healthier planet. Starting with its youngest learners, the Museum will serve as the epicenter for multi-generational learning to build a community committed to protecting our natural environment and resources.

A reimagined nature museum for our community ensures valuable space for exploration, learning and leisure. By supporting this campaign, you share in the organization’s vision of shaping a future where people embrace science to create opportunities.

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