This unique nature center, located in southwestern Michigan’s Berrien County, has eight miles of trails meandering through its 1000 acres. Our trail system includes boardwalks, observation platforms, and an easily accessible barrier-free walkway. Trails running along the Paw Paw River bluffs provide great views of the river valley below. Boardwalks and observation platforms in the flood plain give you an up-close look at wetland wildlife and habitats including wet forests, cattail marshes, shrub carrs, and even a unique alkaline wetland called a fen. The best part is that you can see it all without even getting your feet wet!
Our primary goal at Sarett Nature Center is to provide quality environmental education for our community. Each year over 25,000 students ranging in age from preschoolers through adults attend programs at Sarett. Local school systems make use of our environmental education classes like pond study, maple sugaring, dune and river exploration, natural communities, and winter ecology as a part of their curriculum. We also offer classes tailored for homeschooled students. During the summer months we conduct a variety of summer classes for kids. Aquatic study, insect study, canoeing, and mucking in the marsh are always among the favorites.
An exciting way for you to gain appreciation and knowledge of the natural world is to take part in one of Sarett’s weekend programs for interesting and informative topics such as photography seminars, slide shows, field trips to local natural areas, afternoon canoeing and kayaking adventures, snowshoe-making, wildflower walks, naturalist led hikes and more. Throughout the year we host a number of special events such as our annual Country Fair, the Barn Party and our 5k race, the Spring Stampede.
One of our favorite activities is birding. The Berrien County checklist contains over 300 species so there are plenty of birds to see in our own backyard. Birding activities at Sarett include spring birding classes, day long adventures to local hot spots, and trips to exotic locations all around the world. We also participate in bird surveys like the National Audubon Society’s Christmas Bird Count, bird feeder surveys, and the annual Berrien County Birdathon.
An exciting part of Sarett’s environmental education is our natural history trips. Each year Sarett organizes and leads a number of tours to the most exciting natural locations in the United States and the World. Groups ranging in size from 5 to 50 people have traveled with Sarett to such captivating destinations as Africa, New Zealand, Antarctica, and the Galapagos Islands. Whether your interests are in the area of birding, wildflowers, geology, hiking, canoeing, cross-country skiing or just enjoying the fall colors, we have a trip for you.
Sarett Nature Center operates with a staff of 8-9 naturalists including full and part time staff members as well as seasonal interns. We also depend on the help that we receive from volunteers in all aspects of our work.
Please enjoy our trails without pets, picnicking, picking wildflowers, bikes, or other disturbances to our natural setting.
Sarett Nature Center is a 501(c)(3) organization. All donations made to Sarett are tax deductible.