Dickinson County

Nature Center

The Dickinson County Nature Center is open year-round and is a mecca for environmental learning and fun. There is always something to see and do, whether it be a visiting exhibit or some of our permanent displays. Plus, it’s all FREE!

Photo of a box turtle

live animals

See painted turtles, an ornate box turtle, red-eared sliders, a baby snapping turtle, salamanders, a frog and toad, a hedgehog, snakes, a tarantula, fish and more!

Photo of fake bats in a cave

Bat cave and fox burrow

Walk-through an indoor bat cave to discover how these amazing creatures use echolocation and what products are really made from bat guano. Then kids can crawl through a burrow and pretend they’re foxes.

Photo of kids bouncing on a fen

Glacial Landmark Tour

Jump on a fen, climb a kame, walk along an esker and end inside a glacier to dig for fossils! The interactive glacial landmark tour is fun for all ages.

Photo of an osprey flying over its nest

See a replica osprey nest and osprey photo opp inside the nature center, and April-September watch the osprey nest and raise their chicks in Kenue Park.

Photo of a drawer of butterflies

Wallace collection

Other than the Smithsonian Museum, the Dickinson County Nature Center is the only public entity with rights to photos from Alfred R. Wallace’s collection, found in an antique cabinet by an Okoboji native.

Photo of kids in the play area

Kids Play area

Try on butterfly wings; roast faux marshmallows over a faux fire; put on a nature play with wildlife puppets, and just explore your playful nature for hours.

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Climb through a human-sized honeycomb and watch live honeybees inside an indoor beehive. Plus, check out exhibits under construction!

Photo of girl modeling T-shirt

Nature Store

Find unique gifts such as locally-made goat’s milk soap, Okoboji Outdoors T-shirts, stuffed animals, pollinator costumes and more in the Nature Store! Conservation Foundation of Dickinson County members receive 10 percent off purchases.

Photo of a girl doing a water experiment

Public programs

In addition to free admission, nature center educators also provide free programming year-round to the public.

Outside the center

In addition to the wonderful educational opportunities inside the Dickinson County Nature Center, Kenue Park also features geocaching, mowed trails through the prairie and around the wetland that is home to two rehabilitated trumpeter swans, an 18-hole professional level disc golf course, a fantastic Nature Playscape and paved trails that are a part of the Dickinson County Trails system.

Map of Kenue Park

Interested in volunteering at the nature center?

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