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OC Explorer Guest Post: Orange County Nature and Interpretive Centers

OC Explorer Guest Post: Orange County Nature and Interpretive Centers

Last week, we featured Joe Anzenberger’s guest post on OC Nature Preserves and Wildlife Sanctuaries. Since it’s supposed to be a rainy week, I thought his discussion of OC Nature Centers might be appropriate.

Fun Orange County Parks recently wrote up reviews of several nature centers, like Oak Canyon, Turtle Rock, and others, but did you know that there are about fifteen nature and interpretive centers spread throughout the county?

Most are located at well-known county parks, such as O’Neill and Craig regional parks, but there are also some relatively unknown but very interesting ones at places like Shipley in Huntington Beach Central Park, and Riley and Caspers wilderness parks.  Don’t let the term “wilderness park” scare you though; the centers are located next to the park rangers’ offices. Some are very small and some have live and stuffed animals, but most of all, they are all fun to visit.

For something a little different, if you haven’t already been there, is Fossil Reef Park in Laguna Hills.  There you will not only find a playground, but you can visit the free display center where dinosaur bones and other fossils are on display in the Laguna Hills Community Center.  The amazing part is that the fossils were actually found on the site of the park, as well as the surrounding area.

Joe Anzenberger dedicated himself to sharing stories and advice about exploring the “back country” of Orange County on his now defunct OC Explorer website. His site presented all the off-pavement trails in Orange County, spotlighting beautiful locations where entertainment lies in the sounds and sights of a million year old natural environment. Joe shares OC back country experience suitable for families on our site.

Jean Nagy

Friday 9th of August 2013

Hi, You forgot to mention the Urban Forest on Ellis Hill that is a beautiful place to watch birds and it is open all the time. Also two other parks to watch birds that the HB Tree Society, Inc. takes care of if Overlook park (within walking distance of the new center) and Gibbs park. Call me and I will be happy to show you these sites. Jean Nagy cell 562 760 0733

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