Drumlin Farm Breaks Ground for Environmental Learning Center

Release Date:
October 23, 2017

LINCOLN, MA—Mass Audubon has officially broken ground for its state-of-the art Environmental Learning Center (ELC) at Drumlin Farm Wildlife Sanctuary in Lincoln. When it debuts next spring, the 3,700 square foot building will serve as the hub from which all of the wildlife sanctuary’s environmental education flows.

The Sunday, October 15 groundbreaking celebration brought together Mass Audubon leaders and Drumlin Farm friends and supporters at the site of the exciting new sanctuary resource, located near the welcome area/Nature Center and other program structures.

Nature-based camps, workshops, preschool, and school programs that cultivate environmental awareness and science literacy are fundamental to Drumlin Farm’s goals in connecting visitors to the natural world. The ELC will support these ever-evolving programs for decades to come.

The center will provide essential work space for the sanctuary education team and serve as a place to engage program participants, teachers, and parents. Designed to foster collaboration and innovation while supporting efficient administration of educational programs, the net-zero energy facility will also serve as an educational model of energy-saving features and green-building sustainability.

The Mass Cultural Facilities Fund (CFF) is contributing $225,000 to the $2.5 million project, which has attracted other institutional and generous individual supporters, including the Manton Foundation, Ogden Codman Trust, Red Acre Foundation, and the General William Mayer Foundation. CFF is managed jointly by the Mass Cultural Council and MassDevelopment.

“We are proud to support Mass Audubon in its conservation, education, and advocacy across Massachusetts,” said Anita Walker, Mass Cultural Council Executive Director. “Mass Audubon’s mission is as important now as ever, so we’re delighted to play a role in helping to make the new Environmental Learning Center at Drumlin Farm a reality.”

“The Environmental Learning Center at Drumlin Farm Wildlife Sanctuary is emblematic of our organization-wide commitment to growing the next generation of conservation leaders as we all address the challenges and opportunities of the 21st century,” Mass Audubon President Gary Clayton said. “We are grateful for the many institutional and individual supporters of the project who share this vision, including the Mass Cultural Council.”

Drumlin Farm director Renata Pomponi noted, “The Environmental Learning Center represents a critical step in Drumlin Farm’s goal to bring science to the forefront of environmental education. By giving our educators the space to collaborate and innovate, we look forward to continuing Drumlin Farm’s 60-year history of helping people to understand and engage with the natural world around them.”

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Mass Audubon protects 36,500 acres of land throughout Massachusetts, saving birds and other wildlife, and making nature accessible to all. As Massachusetts’ largest nature conservation nonprofit, we welcome more than a half million visitors a year to our wildlife sanctuaries and 20 nature centers. From inspiring hilltop views to breathtaking coastal landscapes, serene woods, and working farms, we believe in protecting our state’s natural treasures for wildlife and for all people—a vision shared in 1896 by our founders, two extraordinary Boston women. Today, Mass Audubon is a nationally recognized environmental education leader, offering thousands of camp, school, and adult programs that get over 225,000 kids and adults outdoors every year. With more than 125,000 members and supporters, we advocate on Beacon Hill and beyond, and conduct conservation research to preserve the natural heritage of our beautiful state for today’s and future generations. We welcome you to explore a nearby sanctuary, find inspiration, and get involved. Learn how at massaudubon.org.