May 29

River Bend Nature Center – Wichita Falls, Texas

River Bend Nature Center
We are always looking for interesting and educational experiences for our girls. My wife and I feel that if we can make learning fun while they are young maybe they will enjoy it when they are older.  So, nature centers, zoos, interactive museums are all on the top of our list when it comes to outings with the girls. Main thing is for them to have fun.  Which our girls did at the River Bend Nature Center.
The River Bend Nature Center is basically three attraction areas in one place.  Their learning center is filled with a variety of tanks that house amphibians, reptiles, and insects.  Depending on what time of year this might be the best spot in the whole place.  A butterfly house and Texas habitat conservatory which during our visit was just starting to come to life.  What ended up being our favorite part of the River Bend Nature Center was their walking trail behind the place.
Prairie Dog
The Bryant Edwards Learning Center at the River Bend Nature Center was a real hit for my girls.  First off, they do a great job with having lots of activities for kids to do.  Each table in the center had a different project to work on.  A variety of coloring books, crafts to make, as well as touch tables and minerals to look at.  Along the wall, they have a variety of animals to see.  The staff was incredible you could tell they really cared about the place, the animals, and trying to give their visitors the best experience they could.
The area that I thought was going to be the most impressive was their 7,000-sq. ft. conservatory.  Now we were there in early spring and I am sure by summer when everything is green and luscious it would have more of a wow factor than it did during our visit. Overall, the place has a pretty neat setup.  Showcasing the native flora of Texas with over 100 native plants on display. We were just there at the wrong time of the year to see it.  Along with the plants they do have a few animals on display including several Bob White Quail running around.  There was also an indoor pond with native fish and turtles to look at.
Nature Trail
At the back of the conservatory they have a butterfly enclosure called Peyton’s Place.  It is a nice little butterfly room with a variety of the winged wonders on display.  If money was no object, Karen and I have often talked about opening up our own butterfly house/nature center in our city.  There is nothing remotely close to it in our metropolitan area.  Until Karen and I strike it rich we will just keep visiting places like River Bend Nature Center.
touch table
Now what came as a complete surprise to us was their “backyard” nature trail.  Located behind the conservatory was 17 acres of forest and wetlands. I took my two little girls for some daddy/daughter time and we hit the trail.  The plants had not quite blossomed yet but nevertheless we had a good time.  Saw more wildlife than we expected.  A nice variety of birds overhead as well as a deer that we crossed paths with twice.
Overall, we had a good time at the River Bend Nature Center.  I am sure in the late spring and summer months there is a bit more to see.  Though the native plants had not quite got their act together during our visit there was still plenty of other things to see and do.

To see our over reviews of Texas attractions, click here

River Bend Nature Center
Located at 2200 3rd St. Wichita Falls, Texas
Hours of Operation: Monday to Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday 12 to 4 p.m. closed Easter, July 4th, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day
Cost as of this Posting: 2 to 61 $5.00 62 and over $4.00
For more information visit their website http://riverbendnaturecenter.org/

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