Educational Visitor Center
KUHNERT ARBORETUM EDUCATIONAL CENTERPurpose:
When completed, the Educational Center building will serve as a valuable gathering place and focal point within the Kuhnert Arboretum. The Educational Center will accommodate a wide variety of activities to include environmental programming, educational programming, special events, receptions and group rentals. The development of the Educational Center will enhance the Kuhnert Arboretum by allowing for expanded use and educational opportunities in a wide variety of environmental and recreational areas.
Visitor Center Elements:
1. Information center – information on the Kuhnert Arboretum, City of Aberdeen and Parks, Recreation & Forestry Dept.
2. Multi-purpose room - for small classes or meetings
3. Large room with foyer – for larger gatherings including workshops, classes and weddings
4. Restroom facilities
5. Environmental architectural design
6. Close proximity to the parking area
7. Outdoor plaza area
8. Landscaping features
Specific functions and programming opportunities of the Visitor Center:Educational Center:
1. A main function of this facility will include environmental educational programming for the regional public and youth. Programs will be initiated and performed by The Parks, Recreation & Forestry Department (PRF), Northern State University (NSU), South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks (GF&P), local garden clubs, Hardy Rosarians of South Dakota and other interested groups.
This building will also serve as an external classroom for public and private schools to use for environmental based subjects including Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) programs. STEM related programs has become a presidential priority because too few college students are pursuing degrees in these fields.
2. Serve as a reception area available for rentals which can host small to medium events such as family reunions, weddings, receptions, workshops and conferences.
3. Serve as an informational/reception center for the Kuhnert Arboretum and also for the Parks, Recreation and Forestry Department. Information related to all City functions will also be distributed.
4. Serve as a restroom and break area for those visiting the Arboretum. This center will also be used for Arboretum events that are disrupted by inclement weather.
A cost for this Educational Center is estimated to be $1,235,000.00. Funding for this project will come from donations, fund raising, grants and municipal funds.