UPDATE:  As of July 1, 2020, until further notice, the WNC Nature Center remains temporarily closed to the public. The Nature Center is working closely with local officials to develop a plan to safely reopen. This will most likely take place during Phase 3 of North Carolina’s Stay Safe COVID-19 order. We anticipate opening during the month of September and will update the website and our social media platforms as soon as a date is confirmed.

Open 361 Days a Year: 10:00am – 5:00pm, last entry 4:30pm

You Can Help!
Your gift to the Friends of the WNC Nature Center
supports the animals you love!
Donate Now!
Adopt an Animal
You provide the love, and we'll provide the expert care!
Become a Wild Parent!


An annual membership to the Friends of the WNC Nature Center helps provide resources to support the animal habitats, education programs, and conservation intiatives of the Nature Center.

When you become a member, you support projects and initiatives like

  • Animal Veterinary Care
  • Animal Food & Enrichment
  • New Exhibits, Signage, & Trails
  • Outreach Education Programs for Those Unable to Visit the Nature Center
  • Local and Regional Conservation Initiatives
Two children petting a barnyard animal
Wild Parent Adopt Package

Adopt an Animal

You provide the love, and we’ll provide the expert care! Become a “Wild Parent” or give an Adopt-an-Animal package as a gift!

Animal adoptions have helped provide major renovations to the Nature Center’s cougar, bobcat, and gray wolf habitats.

Buy a Brick or Bench

Honor a friend or remember a loved one with a personalized brick or bench! You can visit these lasting gifts each time you come to the Nature Center.

A brick pathway at the Nature Center.
White-tailed Deer

Buy an Animal Gram

Celebrating a birthday or graduation? Welcoming a new family member? Wanting to spread some joy?

Our animal keepers will film a customized video with your special message and animal of choice!


Show your love for the Nature Center by volunteering! From helping out with Hey Day to working with the animals to providing office support, we have a place for you! 

A volunteer holds an ambassador animal.
Nature Center staff at Highland Brewing.

Become a Corporate Friend

The WNC Nature Center is one of the premiere family-friendly attractions in the area. Open 361 days a year and offering a wide range of education, recreation, and conservation programming, the Nature Center is a great place to reach your target audience and the 180,000 people who come through our gates annually! 

Depending on their level of support, Corporate Friends receive free passes to the Nature Center, tabling opportunities, discounts on employee memberships, event sponsorship promotion, and more!

Legacy Gifts

Support the future with a planned gift that impacts the WNC Nature Center for generations to come. 

A grandfather and his granddaughter at the Nature Center.
An otter engages with puzzle enrichment.


  • Amazon donates 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to the charitable organization of your choice.
  • AmazonSmile is the same Amazon you know. Same products, same prices, same service!
  • Support the WNC Nature Center by starting your shopping at smile.amazon.com and selecting Friends of the WNC Nature Center Inc. as your nonprofit of choice.
  • Shop for enrichment items for the animals on our AmazonSmile wishlist!
Friends of the WNC Nature Center logo

The Friends of the WNC Nature Center (Tax ID: 23-7412910) has supported the Nature Center since 1974. This 501(c)(3) nonprofit raises funds through donations, memberships, events, and Gift Shop sales. The Friends also provide outreach education, volunteer coordination, and marketing. Your donation directly supports the Nature Center!​