Nature Center Opens At Battelle Darby Metro Park

Two American Bison at Battelle Darby Metro Park(Photo: Sam Hendren / WOSU)
Two American Bison at Battelle Darby Metro Park(Photo: Sam Hendren / WOSU)

Ohio’s largest metro park now has a 14,000-square-foot interpretive nature center. Metro Parks officials celebrated the opening of the Battelle Darby Metro Park nature center just west of Columbus with a ribbon cutting ceremony Thursday morning. Metro Parks Director John O’Meara says the nature center has been 20 years in the making.

“We’ve talked for a long time about getting a better facility for educational programs out here on the west side,” O’Meara says. This is really going to make it better and easier for people to know and learn about it.

The 7,000-acre park offers a glimpse of nature as it was before Ohio was settled. Described as a true jewel of nature, Battle Darby Metro Park has 33 miles of trails that wind through acres of forests and prairies, past wetlands and streams. The Big and Little Darby Creeks meander through the park and are designated as Federal Scenic Rivers.

The new nature center has a 53-foot living stream as well as other exhibits about the biology, geology and history of the area. There’s an outdoor observation platform where visitors can watch several American bison which have been roaming a portion of the park for about a year and a half.

Battelle Darby Metro Park attracts more than 700,000 visitors every year.

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