Blue Sky Nature Center in Troutman is a magnet destination for people of all ages with and without disabilities who want to interact with their environment, while celebrating nature with intentional accessibility, regardless of a person’s physical limitations. The Nature Center is a certified wildlife habitat (#96,267) with the National Wildlife Federation. It incorporates the basic four elements of food, water, shelter, and safe places for wildlife to raise their young.
Creating educational hands-on experiences, work opportunities, interacting with and protecting nature, are key goals for LIFESPAN’s Blue Sky Nature Center.
The community has created this environment including corporations, garden clubs, civic and church groups. Through support of Eagle Scout projects, benches specifically designed for people with abilities have been built and placed along the ¼ mile walking trail loop; an Amphitheatre created with stage and ramp for accessibility; and many birdhouses for specific species built.
With the support of a greenhouse, the horticulture areas include sensory gardens (directed at our participants with a variety of disabilities to stimulate all senses), butterfly and hummingbird attraction beds and gardens, water features and chimes, herb containers, vegetable beds, and floral areas with both annuals and perennials. Blue Sky Nature Center incorporates water conservation through use of rain barrels, mulching, and xeriscaping techniques using drought tolerant plantings and native species.
Blue Sky Nature Center offers an outdoor classroom experience and continues to complete the objectives that fit LIFESPAN’s mission by incorporating all elements of our program services:
Resources such as the Blue Sky Nature Center make communities livable, improve the economy through tourism and civic improvement, preserve and restore open space, and provide opportunities for physical activity to improve fitness and mental health.
For more information on how you can help, contact Aubrae Collins at firstname.lastname@example.org.