Ann Arbor–Exploring Nature, Botanical Gardens & the Observatory

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Sara Gilmore with Bald Eagle
Raptor specialist, Sara Gilmore and captive bald eagle at Leslie Science & Nature Center, Ann Arbor, Michigan. Photo Credit: Tom Wilmer
The Leslie Science and Nature Center in Ann Arbor, Michigan provides innovative educational programs, highlighting the region’s flora and fauna. Set on 50 acres of natural landscape in the midst of an urban environment, the center offers engaging hands-on educational opportunities for school groups, and all of the citizens of Ann Arbor. We’ll visit with Kathy Evans, the Education Director, and Sara Gilmore, the Raptor Specialist at the Leslie Science and Nature Center. We’ll then meet up with Joseph Mooney at the university of Michigan’s Nichols Arboretum and Matthaei Botanical Gardens. Afterwards we’ll stop in at the Bentley Historical Library. The Bentley is the repository and research facility for the University of Michigan’s historical records, archival photographs and more. The Bentley is also the home of the legendary Detroit Observatory. When the observatory opened way back in 1854 it was the first in the state of Michigan, and the observatory building remains as the second oldest structure on campus. The centerpiece at the observatory is the 1852 German-made meridian telescope–one of the world’s most sophisticated and advanced instruments in the day. The telescope is still used and remains in pristine condition.  


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Matthaei Botanical Gardens Conservatory
Matthaei Botanical Gardens at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Photo Credit: Tom Wilmer
Herbaceuous Peonies at Nichols Arboretum
Peonies in full-bloom at Nichols Arboretum, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Photo Credit: Tom Wilmer
1860s telescope at Detroit Observatory
Detroit Observatory Telescope at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Photo Credit: Tom Wilmer