Be a Force of Nature

Help support our community during these challenging times.

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A force of nature is full of energy, unstoppable, unchallengeable and unforgettable; never giving up, no matter what. The Environmental Learning Center (ELC) is, and will continue to be, a positive force for nature. We ignite sparks daily in the young and young at heart, through immersive hands-on, feet-wet programs that impart an understanding of the interconnectedness of everything in the natural world, much like the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle.


This global pandemic has turned the world upside down. It feels relentless and scary. Our foremost concern is the health of all people. In this vein, we have opened our campus to the public, waiving fees, so that all are encouraged to take advantage of what we have to offer while maintaining the social distancing that has been advised to slow transmission of this silent threat. Our beautiful, spacious, peaceful campus provides a place for breathing deeply of the fresh air, while walking amongst the splendor of the unspoiled outdoors. Immersion in nature is proven to improve mood, reduce stress levels, and improve the immune system, while bringing perspective and clarity.


We are shifting our delivery methods. Our education staff is currently working to create free virtual science, environmental, and wellness programming to push out through various mediums by the time you receive this letter so that people will still have access to the unique and important programming we provide. We can think of no more essential provisions for the community than the gifts of peace, knowledge, and wellness. We all have gifts we can share during this critical time. Including you!


The practical reality is that the operation of our center requires us to bring in revenue of $3300 per day to be viable. If we assume that this crisis will prevent us from serving the public for 60 days, that is ~$200,000 that we need to generate now to get through this crisis. Can we count on you? People can be forces of nature. We need an army of them to restore the health of our vital ecosystems. And we need you to be a force for nature by digging deep financially to ensure the stability of the ELC. 


Your support will enable us to survive during this unprecedented challenge. If you feel passionately about the health of our natural resources and the well-being of all humans, we ask you to give, now, beyond your usual comfort level, so that we may continue to carry out our mission to create a force of environmental stewards. Nature needs a voice, and it’s up to all of us to give it one. We cannot be derailed by a virus.


With your investment, we will be able to sustain our staff and 64-acre campus in order to provide a safe haven for the community and a wide array of educational opportunities to expand the community’s knowledge of our treasured environment to people of all ages. Please give generously.


Thank you and we look forward to seeing you at the ELC!


With kind regards,




            Barbara Schlitt Ford                                                 Donald E. Barr

            ELC Executive Director                                           Chair, ELC Board of Directors