Reopen the Florence Jones Reineman Wildlife Sanctuary and Beaversprite Nature Center

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The Florence Jones Reineman Wildlife Sanctuary and Beaversprite Nature Center is a wonderful center located in a small town in Upstate New York called Oppenheim.  Its center houses a crawl through educational beaver hut, taxidermy animals, live tanks for fish, salamanders, and bugs.  It has fantastic nature trails and also hosts an array of education shows not only for children but for adults as well.  Many city schools would travel to the Nature Center and Sanctuary to learn about plant and animal life native to the area.  Some of the students from these schools would only be given the opportunity to learn about such things because of this center.  

Unfortunately, due to mismanagement and greed from the previous manager of the Sanctuary and Nature Center, the Trustee's closed the center down with no plan of reopening.  It took away a huge and beautiful piece of the Oppenheim Community as well as an amazing educational opportunity for the surrounding areas and population both young and old alike.

A simple solution to this problem and the outcome we hope to achieve is to have the fund reopen the center and appoint a proper manager to run and improve this fantastic place.  Part of this solution has already been achieved.  A person of great integrity with the proper degree and management experience has already stepped up and been in contact with the Trustee's in hopes of taking over as Manager of this center.  All we need is to convince the Trustee's that the Center is worth the time.  The community and surrounding areas are all loosing out on a fantastic opportunity to learn and see what nature is all about.  

Girl Scouts Troop 2123 says: The Sanctuary was a wonderful place to bring our girls.  They learned about nature and how they could help keep it safe.  As Brownies and Daisies (Kindergarten to 3 Graders) our girls were able to explore and learn not only through lecture but through touch and experience the world around them and how they are all connected to everything they do.

Community Member says: During the summer months I would take my grandchildren to the lectures that they hosted at the Nature Center.  My granddaughter got to see a baby black bear!  She got to pet a python and an alligator.  She got to see so many animals that most people, forget about children, only get to see at a distance if at all!  I miss having those opportunities!  I miss being able to call my daughter and her husband and say "Hey!  There is a great show on Friday night!  Bring the babies up so we can go.  Tonight there is going to be *insert awesome animal here*." I just wish that we had our Center back!

 Mrs. Susan Pedrick - Second Grade Teacher, Oppenheim-Ephratah-St. Johnsville CSD says: I teach 2nd grade at Oppenheim Ephratah St. Johnsville school.  I visited the Sanctuary for many years.  I have lots of pictures of the group's visits.  It was a very educational and child friendly setting.  Children loved the trip and learned a great deal.  I probably went there 7 or 8 years as our field trip.  I did not know it had closed.  How sad.  It had Saturday night shows all summer free to the public with wonderful live animal programs.

Mrs. Kira Stone-Benenati - Kindergarten Teacher, Dolgeville Elementary School  says: My family and I used to love to attend presentations at the nature center on Saturday nights during the summer. We really miss them! Also, even though I have not taken a class on a field trip to the nature center, I attended a few there myself when I was a student in school. The nature center really was educational, and I had a great time crawling through the beaver lodge!

Adirondack Adventures Childcare Owner says: As a daycare provider in the town of Oppenheim I was saddened to hear that the Florence Jones Reinman Sanctuary as well as Beaversprite are no longer in operation. What a loss to our community . I remember visiting them as a child and adult and at both stages being amazed at the stories of Beaversprite and learning invaluable information about our area and the animals around us at the sanctuary . I was hoping to be able to provide these experiences to my daycare children to share the joys of nature with them however now I can not . This is an amazing area that has such potential to provide years of learning and experiences for people of all ages from all over. Just as important as the location is for learning it is just as important for preservation of the land located here . Being located just miles from my daycare I would love to be able to incorporate learning at the sanctuary into my curriculum.