DANVERS — Endicott Park now has a place where kids and adults can learn about the nature and environment of the sprawling park on Forest Street.
On Thursday, the nonprofit Friends of Endicott Park held a grand opening ceremony for the new Endicott Park Nature Center, with state and town leaders and school officials on hand. The event celebrated the completion of the center’s 750 square-foot space in the park’s Carriage House building, a space that is now home to educational and environmental exhibitions.
The Nature Center features hands-on displays, including drawers full of animal skulls, a glass-enclosed bee hive with live honey bees, an aquarium stocked with fish from Goodno Pond, and a 55-gallon forest floor terrarium where an American toad lives.
Staffed by an Endicott Park naturalist, the center will be a place for Danvers Recreation children’s programs, such as Little Explorers; adult programs through Danvers Recreation; and school groups on science field trips.
The project was spearheaded by Friends of Endicott Park and completed by McKenzie Group of Danvers, which is run by Bill McKenzie, president of Friends of Endicott Park, and his wife, Lois.
Lois McKenzie, vice president of the Friends, served as master of ceremonies for the grand opening.
The project began in 2015, with the Friends raising more than $125,000 to pay for the work. In-kind donations and services came from local businesses, Danvers Recreation and the DPW.