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B and B Cabin
Eco-Kids Clubhouse
Tree House
Treehouse connected with a canopy walk

Tree Wiz...a different kind of Eco-Center!

The members of People for Trees, Inc. have had a vision to create a truly, unique environmental center. Imagine being able to educate people about southwest Florida’s natural beauty in a setting that can only be found in our pine flatwoods! Picture children being encouraged to get in touch with nature with exciting exhibits and interactive displays that showcase our various eco-systems. Think about the fun of being able to explore tree houses and run along a tree canopy walk!

  • An after-school program for children that would be nature-based!
  • Special Saturday programs designed for kids to discover and explore the world around them?!
  • The perfect place for our Florida-friendly workshops and our annual Tree Festival.
  • A native tree nursery to promote proper tree planting and care.
  • A miniature train ride through a natural pine flatwoods forest of Florida.
  • A working beehive!
  • A Florida "batcave" to learn all about the Florida Bat!
  • An interpretive center for the gopher tortoise housed in a dome-shaped building!
  • Zip-lines, tree climbing, and other treetop adventures!
  • Interactive, hands-on learning nature trails.

Initially we were interested in a 63-acre parcel of land located in the western part of North Port and had partnered with the Lemon Bay Conservancy. It made perfect sense as this parcel would provide the residents of North Port with a gateway for the 500+ acres just purchased by Sarasota County. There were countless discussions and many “dog-and-pony” shows with the North Port City Commissioners, City Manager, Planning Directors, Economic Development Manager, and the Land Acquisition Manager. Also the Sarasota County Commissioners, their Environmentally Sensitive Land Committee and their Parks & Recreation Director. The Gulf Coast Conservation Foundation, Vision North Port and its Eco-Tech Institute Committee. But I learned that land conservation is not really about conserving land as much as it is about providing landowners a “way out” after they have gotten what they could from the land. There was absolutely no support for what we’re trying to do so we’re going to start with a 3-5 acre parcel of land and build from there. Let’s do this and leave the bumbling bureaucrats behind!

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