Visiting the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum and Discovering “The Learning Center”

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I’ve been to the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum many times since I moved to Minnesota but today was the first time I’ve been to The Learning Center. The play areas reminded me a little bit of the outdoor play areas of Wood Lake Nature Center and the Tamarack Nature Center. As far as young children go, this was probably the best of the three!

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I was amazed and surprised at all I’ve been missing out on! They have beautiful outdoor spaces for toddlers and preschoolers and a garden where summer camp kids grow vegetables.

Inside they were having a special event and activities related to bees. We spent half the day at The Learning Center alone!

Inside the greenhouse. The little butterfly hat was an art project they had set up for the kids to enjoy.

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Flowers in the greenhouse.

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The children are spraying the plants in the greenhouse with water bottles provided by the arboretum for visitors to use.

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In honor of “Bee Day” they had a bee costume for kids to try on.

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Some sort of bird house in one of the four outdoor areas surrounding the Center.

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The first free outdoor lending library and outdoor reading area I’ve ever seen. There was a canopy of crabapple trees and birdfeeders all around. More nature play objects as well.

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Enjoying one of the books on birds and the sheltered reading area.

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Each outdoor space as items for the children to use and to enjoy. Most of the items for creative play were items found in nature.

I think the children enjoyed this table the most. They painted slices of tree trunks with paintbrushes and water.

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An interesting crawl space/fort made of iron stakes and some sort of mesh-like burlap.

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This area had a water spout and PVC tubes to build waterways.

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