Published on December 21, 2020

Discovery Center to Support Sanctuary’s Work & Local Community

Sanctuary Director Ian Ives in front of the Discovery Center construction site
Sanctuary Director Ian Ives

Sanctuary Director Ian Ives becomes visibly excited when he talks about completing Long Pasture's first major capital campaign.

The $1.8 million raised will fund a new Discovery Center and extensive campus-wide improvements, including all-persons accessibility, which are now under construction next to the sanctuary’s existing visitors center, a former private home.

"The Discovery Center project includes not only a new, modern building, but, just as important, exterior improvements which will create a campus with updated access for everyone in our community," Ian says. "It’ll provide the space our excellent programs need and allow for more community activities."

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Accessible, Energy-Efficient Building

The 1,700 square foot Discovery Center will offer modern accessibility and multi-functional space, including two meeting rooms, each with 80-inch video screens for presentations. The two spaces can open into one large auditorium accommodating up to 80 people. Sinks and counter space will support hands-on school programs, such as science labs.  Floor to ceiling windows will offer views of Night Heron Pond and Barnstable Harbor.  There will also be an exhibit hall for educational displays and artifacts.

The Discovery Center was designed for net-zero energy efficiency and planning is underway for the installation of solar panels on the roof as soon as this summer.

Multi-Functional Campus

The construction of the Discovery Center, which began last July, will also create several outdoor break-out spaces. Ian says a new walkway between the building and the existing visitors center will open into a wide patio with seating and an expansive view of the harbor, a perfect gathering spot for outdoor programs or special events.

A future plan calls for an all-persons trail and a three-season pavilion to accommodate visitors and program participants of all ages in an outdoor yet covered setting.

When the Discovery Center is completed, it will allow Long Pasture to triple its program space. But Ian says the look and feel of the sanctuary will remain the same. "We do fantastic work here and the Discovery Center will enable us to do it even better. The flavor and scale of Long Pasture will remain."