Within Arlington are two great nature centers, Long Branch and Gulf Center. K and I have visited Long Branch, and really enjoyed the discovery room and trails. Both centers offer many education activities for all ages, including toddlers.

I have heard that the flying squirrels viewings are very great fun and these squirrels have been featured on Animal Planet! The scheduled viewings takes place at night, as the squirrels are nocturnal. After an indoor presentation, you will go outside to see them search for their evening meal. K is still a little young for this, but we may have to go for iDad and me!

Families can enjoy other activities such as the Long Branch Puppet Theater, learning more about a honeybee hive at Gulf Branch Nature Center, and a Rainbow Hike to join a naturalist on a hike to find all the colors of the rainbow in nature.

For toddlers, there is a Tiny Tots program, ages 18 – 35 months, at both Gulf Branch and Long Branch Nature Centers. Tiny Tot programs engage your child with hands-on learning, and include a variety of activities like songs, crafts, finger plays, and mini-hikes.

K and I really enjoyed the Babies in Backpacks hike. No srtollers are allowed but slings, frame carriers, bjorns, etc. are welcome. Join a park naturalist (and her child) and head out on a moderate hike to enjoy the sights and sounds of the great outdoors, then conclude with some “down time” for closer encounters with nature.

There are also activities for older school age children.

The fantastic part, is that the fees are VERY affordable, typically $2-$5 per event and sometimes even free!

To register, call 703-228-4747 or visit https://registration.arlingtonva.us

View the Spring 2010 Wee Snag Newsletter
Spring 2010 Wee Snag Online

Long Branch Nature Center, 625 S. Carlin Springs Rd., Arlington, VA 22204. 703-228-6535
Hours of Operation
Sunday: 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Monday: Closed
Tuesday – Saturday: 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Features
Exhibits, classroom (40 person capacity), children’s Discovery Room, live animal displays, interpretive gardens, viewing pond
Amenities
Public restrooms, water fountains, fully wheelchair-accessible with some accessible trails

Gulf Branch Nature Center, 3608 Military Road, Arlington, VA 22207 703-228-3403
Hours of Operation
Sunday: 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Monday – Tuesday: Closed
Wednesday – Saturday: 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Features
Exhibits, classroom (20 person capacity), children’s Discovery Room, live animal exhibit room, pond, restored log cabin
Amenities
Public restrooms, water fountain, not wheelchair accessible

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