Phased reopening to begin with Wild Walk and outdoor experiences
The Wild Center is pleased to announce that they will be welcoming visitors back. The Wild Center will begin a phased reopening on Wednesday, July 15, 2020, starting with Wild Walk and outdoor experiences. As a continued commitment to the health and safety of visitors, staff and the wider community, The Wild Center has implemented limited capacity, enhanced operational procedures and cleaning protocols.
“We’re excited to welcome visitors, members, staff and volunteers back to our outdoor experiences so that we can continue to make lifelong memories in nature. It was important to us that we not reopen until we were absolutely sure that we could deliver a Wild Center experience that people have grown to know and love while doing so in the safest manner possible,” said Stephanie Ratcliffe, Wild Center Executive Director.
“I have been reviewing The Wild Center’s reopening preparations and safety planning for the past few months,” explained Tupper Lake Mayor Paul Maroun. “I’m excited that we will soon be able to begin to welcome visitors back to the Center and Tupper Lake. I believe the thorough planning and safety measures taking place will help protect not only visitors, but our community as well. The more we can do to keep each other healthy, the sooner we can welcome more visitors back.”
Temporary adjustments have been put in place to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone. These include:
Outdoor experience: The Wild Center will utilize Wild Walk, Musical Forest and its largely outdoor 115-acre campus to provide a one-of-a-kind experience. During the first phase of reopening, The Wild Center’s indoor portion including exhibits, the Flammer Theater, Wild Supply Co. indoor gift shop and the Waterside Cafe (restrooms excepted) will remain temporarily closed. Visitors are encouraged to pack picnic lunches as limited pre-packaged snacks will be available. Curbside pickup of Wild Supply Co. items ordered online will also be available.
Timed ticket reservation system: For your safety, The Wild Center has transitioned completely to a new timed ticket reservation system to manage capacity which limits the number of visitors on campus during a given time. Reservations may be made online, by phone or email prior to arrival and are required for all guests, including members. Timed reservations will be available beginning Monday, June 29. Tickets are valid for one-day only.
Promoting wellness: All Wild Center guests (ages 2 and over), as well as staff and volunteers, will be required to wear face coverings at all times when visiting. Hand sanitizing stations will be available throughout the campus. Wild Center staff will frequently clean and disinfect high traffic areas and restrooms. Visitors are asked to follow one-way directional signage and ground markings which have been installed to help guests better navigate while practicing physical distancing.
Paperless visit: For the safety of visitors and employees, The Wild Center is temporarily accepting cashless payments only. Paper maps have transitioned to digital maps, which visitors may view on The Wild Center’s website, accessible on mobile devices, or through a brand-new Wild Center app. Visitors may also access audio tours and self-lead scavenger hunts through the mobile app.
Although visitors will not have access to the indoor otter exhibit, visitors will be allowed to catch a glimpse of the otters in the behind-the-scenes outdoor otter play yard – a spot normally off-limits to visitors. Wild Center naturalists will hold short live animal encounters and drop-in educational programs throughout the day in specific locations around the outdoor campus. Naturalist-led canoe trips will be available by reservation for an additional fee.
For more information on reopening, guidelines and reservation information, visit The Wild Center’s Visit page: www.wildcenter.org/visit/.
The Wild Center will be open seven days a week by reservation from 10am to 5pm from July 15, 2020 to October 11, 2020. From October 12, 2020 to May 30, 2021, The Wild Center will be open Friday through Sunday from 10am to 5pm.