Museum to Break Ground for Outdoor Park

Posted March 23, 2015 at 9:01 am     Category: Cape Fear MuseumNews Release

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC – Cape Fear Museum will break ground for its Outdoor Learning Environment on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 at 11:00 a.m. The ceremony, which is free and open to the public, will take place adjacent to the Museum at the corner of 8th and Market Streets. Remarks will be made by the Museum Director Sheryl Kingery Mays, Chairman Jonathan Barfield, Jr., and Mayor Bill Saffo.

The Outdoor Learning Environment (OLE) is an urban green space, free and accessible to the community. Its interconnected park-like landscape and interactive exhibits will introduce visitors to some of the ways that people have interacted with the region’s land and water resources through time and how these interactions have shaped the history of the Lower Cape Fear region. Visitors to the park can engage with hands-on exhibits, explore gardens featuring native and adaptive plants, learn about historic objects and images, and enjoy special educational activities. The park’s design encourages physical activity and learning through discovery, observation and play. The Outdoor Learning Environment is scheduled to open in the fall of 2015.

From 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Cape Fear Museum will host a free family day featuring hands-on nature and conservation activities with the following partners: Cape Fear Raptor Center, Halyburton Park, NC Aquarium at Fort Fisher, National Weather Service, New Hanover County Environmental Management, Parks and Gardens, and Public Library, and UNCW WiSE.

Parks Bond History

In 2006, residents of Wilmington and New Hanover County passed a bond referendum to expand parks, green space, and cultural facilities throughout Wilmington, New Hanover County, and the beach towns. In 2008, the City of Wilmington sought community and citizen input on parks, recreation, and open space needs and priorities. The following master plan goals and objectives were created:

  • provide and ensure easily accessible, convenient, and equitably distributed recreation and leisure areas.
  • protect the cultural and historical aspects of the region.
  • provide safe and secure parks, greenways, open space areas, leisure opportunities, and experiences.
  • ensure the protection and conservation of the natural resources and environmental quality in the area.

Of the allocated funds, New Hanover County’s Cape Fear Museum was given a portion to create the Outdoor Learning Environment. To date, additional donors and sponsors for the OLE include Cape Fear Garden Club, International Paper, Jack and Carol Mills, and PNC Foundation.

Cape Fear Museum of History and Science, 814 Market St., is open Tuesday -Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday 1 to 5 p.m. General admission is $8 for adults; $7 for seniors, students and military with valid ID; $5 for children 6-17; and free for children 5 and under and for museum members. New Hanover County residents’ free day is the first Sunday of each month. More information:


Release contact:

Amy Mangus
Public Relations Specialist
(910) 798-4367

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