Thomas E & Edna D Carpenter Foundation


Summer-campers look for tadpoles


A student learns about Blue Jays at a Winter Birds class


An education intern teaches preschoolers about frogs


Carpenter Nature Center's visitor center is open 361 days a year


Fishing fun summercamp on the St. Croix River


A toddler meets a Wood Turtle at an outreach program


Executive Director, Jim Fitzpatrick conducts one of the annual prescribed prairie burns


A youngster checks a sap bucket during a maple syruping program


Vickie releases a raptor back to the wild at the fall raptor release.


CNC's educational ambassador, a Great Horned Owl. Visit the Nature Center to meet CNC's owl, eagle, falcon and hawk.


A student gets a close look at a Blanding's Turtle


A youngster enjoys the kids activities at Apple Fest in October

Your tax-deductible donation will help connect youth with nature and protect vital wildlife habitat in the St. Croix Valley.

Thomas and Edna Carpenter moved to the St. Croix Valley in the 1940's and dreamt of leaving their property for future generations to enjoy. As they didn't have any children this was to be their legacy.

In 1981 their dreams became reality and Carpenter Nature Center opened for its first environmental education programs under the guidance of Executive Director James Fitzpatrick. The professional staff and volunteers have been connecting children, families, and individuals with the natural world ever since.

Today over 20,000-30,000 visitors a year enjoy Carpenter Nature Center and its programs, trails and special events. The protected land has grown from the original 325 acres to 725 acres of restored prairies, woodlands and riparian habitat in Minnesota and Wisconsin.

A few of the features that set Carpenter Nature Center apart are the award-winning, K-12 environmental curriculum taught by professional naturalists that includes over 130 different program topics, a sustainably-managed apple orchard, over 15 miles of hiking trails in two states, free access to the site for hiking and wildlife watching, a wild bird banding program, and hiking access to the nationally designated wild & scenic St. Croix River.

As one Twin Cities area K-12 Science Teacher explained, "At Carpenter Nature Center kids get to experience an ecosystem first hand, it is no longer an arbitrary word on the blackboard. With a field trip to Carpenter students see the ecosystem come alive!"

Carpenter St. Croix Valley Nature Center's mission is to foster appreciation and inspire stewardship of the natural world through acquiring and protecting land, and by providing quality environmental education, conservation practices, and outdoor experiences for visitors of all ages and capabilities.

Won't you become part of this wonderful community resource and keep nature accessible to visitors of all ages and capabilities?

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Organization Information

Thomas E & Edna D Carpenter Foundation
12805 St. Croix Trail S.
Hastings, MN 55033

(651) 437-4359



Your tax-deductible donation will help connect youth with nature and protect vital wildlife habitat in the St. Croix Valley.

EIN 237275337

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