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Westwood Hills Nature Center

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Westwood Hills Nature Center

Westwood Hills Nature Center is a 160-acre natural area featuring marsh, woods and restored prairie. The preserve is beautiful throughout the seasons and provides homes for many animals including deer, fox, mink and owls. Westwood Naturalists conduct year-round programs to increase visitors understanding and appreciation of our natural world. The nature center is located just south of I-394 and east of Highway 169. Parking and admission are free. Wood chipped, boardwalks and hard surface accessible trails are open from dawn to dusk year-round. Take a peek at what you'll see at the Nature Center!

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Westwood Hills Nature Center
8300 W. Franklin Ave.
St. Louis Park, MN 55426

Phone: 952.924.2544

Park & Trail Hours:
Nature center trails and playground are open every day from sunrise to sunset, year-round.

Interpretive Center Building Hours
Monday to Friday: 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday: Noon - 5 p.m.

The Interpretive Center will be closed on the following dates in 2016/ 17: Dec. 24- 26, 2016

2017 January 1-2, 16, February 20, April 16, May 27 - 29, July 4, September. 2-4, October 22, November 10, 23-26, December 25

Prohibited Activities:
In order to maintain Westwood's natural habitats, the following activities are prohibited.

  • Dogs and other pets.
  • Picking or collecting of any plant or animal including wildflowers.
  • Feeding of wildlife.
  • Alcoholic beverages.
  • Bicycle riding on trails.
  • Releasing/relocating any wild animal.

Programs: Information on programs offered at the Nature Center are available on

Westwood Hills Nature Center Picnic Pavilion

This pavilion, located near the playground, has an open design which seats up to 25 people. Windows on three sides of this fully accessible building offer beautiful views of the Nature Center grounds and the state-of the-art playground.  The building also features restrooms, sinks, and drinking fountains.  It's a great place for meetings,...

Westwood Hills Nature Center Programs

updated: Tuesday, November 29, 2016

The following activities are offered through Westwood Hills Nature Center programming. Click on the name of the program for a description of the activity and to register.

December 2016 - March 2017 Programs

Public Programs

  • Woodland Picture Frame
  • Build a Bird Feeder
  • New Year's Eve Open House
  • Winter Survival Challenge
  • Winter Scavenger Hunt
  • Life in the Cold
  • Winter Birds
  • Critters Close-Up
  • Snowshoe Adventure
  • You Otter Come to This Program
  • Orienteering
  • Animal Tracks and Signs
  • Chickadee Carpentry
  • Nature Trail Art
  • Maple Syrup
  • Spring Open House
  • Campfire Programs
  • Adult Snowshoeing

Preschool Programs

  • Puppet Story Time:
     The Lazy Woodpecker

              Subnivean Surprise

              Acorny Tale

              Maple Syrup Mystery

  • Nature for the Very Young:

             Oh Deer!

             Who's Hibernating?

             Animal Tracks and Clues

             Maple Syruping

  • Tuesday Turtles Preschool

Home School Programs

  • Winter Birds
  • Outdoor Survival Skills
  • Tracking
  • Signs of Spring

Winter and Spring Break Camps

  • Arctic Explorers
  • Wild about Animals
  • Nature Art Camp
  • Winter Fun
  • Stories of the North Woods
  • Who's Been Here?
  • Puppet Camp
  • April Fools Camp



Nature Center Park Packs

A Park Pack backpack is filled with nature activities designed for hands-on field investigations for all ages. Park Packs include: self-guided hikes, tools for investigation, art activities, poetry, stories, music and games that fit the pack’s theme, each park pack has a different theme. Themes include: insects, ponds, reptiles and amphibians...

More Links

Westwood Hills Nature Center
8300 West Franklin Avenue
St. Louis Park, MN 55426
Phone: 952.924.2544 Email: