COVID-19 IMPACT INFORMATION AND TEMPORARY BUILDING CLOSURE

Nature Center

Dear Friends,

We at the Nature Center at Shaker Lakes share the same feelings that many of you have - nervousness, uncertainty, and concern for everyone impacted by the recent events surrounding the coronavirus pandemic. The safety and well-being of our community, visitors and staff continues to be our number one priority during this time.

In response to these concerns, and in line with governmental recommendations and guidelines that are quickly evolving, the Nature Center at Shaker Lakes’ building will be temporarily closed to the public until further notice in accordance with the state's recent amendment to the Stay at Home Order. Our staff will continue to work behind the scenes and our management team will monitor this evolving situation and share any additional information as it comes to light.

Due to the temporary closure, all scheduled programs and events during the outlined time will be cancelled or postponed. We will update you on any further decisions, should they be necessary, in the coming weeks. Updates will also be posted on our website and social media channels.

TRAIL USAGE INFORMATION:

Trails and outdoor facilities will remain free and open to the public from dawn until dusk. We understand the restorative, healing, stress-relieving power of connecting with nature and we encourage each of you to get outside, in small numbers, to enjoy our trails, habitats, and green spaces with your families and friends.

If you are planning a visit to the trails and habitats at the Nature Center, please follow these simple guidelines to ensure the safety and well-being of all visitors:

  • Wear a mask for the protection of others. Do not visit if you are exhibiting symptoms of illness.
  • Please minimize handrail and bench usage as much as possible. Trail railings will be sprayed down and sanitized three times each week with an eco-friendly product.
  • Practice good hygiene by washing and/or sanitizing your hands before and after trail use.
  • Share the trail: maintain at least 6 feet between you and other visitors.
  • Keep group sizes to less than 10, or fewer if possible.
  • Cover sneezes or coughs with tissue, and then quickly dispose. Alternatively, use the inside of your elbow to cover sneezes or cough and immediately wash hands or use sanitizer.
  • Use a distant wave, or similar, to greet friends and other visitors; refrain from hugs and handshakes.
  • Plan ahead: our restrooms and water fountains are closed.

PROGRAM CANCELLATIONS AND CHANGES:

  • We are excited to announce a new Trail Ambassador program, beginning Monday, May 11. With our building closed, a few of our staff are now out on the trails and available to answer your questions and help you engage with and learn about our trails, habitats and wildlife during your visit.  They will be wearing Nature Center polo shirts and have facemasks - feel free to interact with them at a distance!
  • Join us for our weekly Facebook LIVE programming at noon on select weekdays.  Follow us on Facebook for more information at facebook.com/naturecenter.
  • A summer programming schedule will be released soon.  This will have some great virtual programming opportunities and we hope you find some topics of interest and are able to join us!  Check shakerlakes.org/Events & Programs for more information in the next few weeks.
  • All rentals and B'Earthday Parties during this time have been cancelled until further notice.
  • The Rain Barrel Workshop has been rescheduled for Tuesday, June 30 from 6:30-8PM.  Visit our spring programs page to register or be added to the waitlist. We hope all that have registered can join us on this new tentative date.

If you or a family member has recently traveled, or been in contact with someone known to have COVID-19, the CDC recommends that you self-monitor for symptoms and fever for 14 days upon return and self-isolate by staying home. We echo this by asking that you reschedule any visit to the Nature Center for a later time if you fall into this category or are experiencing any signs of illness.

This is not a decision we have taken lightly. Our staff and board of trustees are dedicated to taking a proactive approach and helping control the spread of this illness with any and all precautions needed to do so. Much of our staff will be working from home, and I am grateful for their dedication and flexibility as we continue with the many ongoing operational and capital projects to enhance visitor experiences and connections to nature.

Thank you for your understanding and continued support. We have full confidence in our community and staff coming together at this time for the safety and well-being of all and look forward to welcoming you back to the Nature Center in the near future. Together, we will support each other through this most unusual time.

Yours in health and wellness,
Kay Carlson
President & CEO