Birthday Parties

Birthday parties at the Outdoor Discovery Center and DeGraaf Nature Center are fun, active experiences for kids! Our naturalist staff will lead the kids on a nature hike, take them on a scavenger hunt, conduct a live animal presentation, help them investigate a natural area and/or explore a variety of other themes. Pick from any of the program themes below for your birthday party. When necessary, age and group size restrictions are indicated.

Program Themes

Birds of Prey

    • best for ages 6 and up
    • bird of prey presentation with at least 4 live birds
    • touchable items include beaks, talons, wings and feathers

Catch and Release Fishing (Outdoor Discovery Center)

    • children under 7 years old may use bamboo poles versus rod and reel combo
    • guests may bring their own equipment
    • Summer fishing – bamboo poles; Winter fishing – ice fishing 

Snowshoeing

    • children under 8 years old may have a hard time keeping snowshoes on their feet
    • must have at least 4 inches of snow

Insect Safari

    • great for all ages
    • best between June and September
    • will use insect sweep nets if conditions acceptable

Feathers, Fur, Scales and Slime

    • great for all ages
    • see, touch and handle a variety of live animals
    • may be conducted entirely inside during cooler seasons or during inclement weather
    • may be conducted as a guided hike where live animals will be “found” along the trail during warmer seasons

Things that Go “Who” in the Night

    • great for all ages
    • may be conducted as a guided owl prowl between November and March in early evening
    • may be conducted as an indoor owl presentation if weather conditions are poor or during warmer seasons

Nature Scavenger Hunt

    • great for preschool-aged children
    • guided scavenger hunt

Knee-deep in a Wetland

    • great for all ages
    • investigate a wetland for aquatic life using dip nets
    • best between April and October

Logistics

    • Programs will last approximately 1 hour
    • Birthday party reservations include the use of the indoor classroom or outdoor picnic tables at a pavilion for 1 hour at the conclusion of the program
    • Children’s birthday parties may have up to 15 children and 10 accompanying adults as part of the fee; additional guests extra
    • Setup for birthday parties can not occur any earlier than 1 hour from the schedule birthday party program time
    • No tape, glue or string may be used to hang decorations
    • Leave facility as it was found or the $50 deposit will not be returned

Fees

$150 birthday party fee

Additional $50 deposit due upon reservation

– deposit in the form of a check is best

– deposit checks will not be cashed unless necessary

– deposit checks will be returned within 10 business days after facilities are inspected by staff

– credit card deposits will be electronically refunded to the card within 10 business days after facilities are inspected by staff