The Interpretive Centre
The Interpretive Centre is the main building located on the grounds of the Allan Brooks Nature Centre. Inside you will be greeted by our friendly staff at the front desk, who will provide you with information that is new and in season at the Nature Centre. There are both static exhibits and interactive activities, permanent displays and travelling exhibits, and samples of artwork created by Major Allan Brooks. Visitors are encouraged to explore the two main exhibit spaces, the Habitat Room and the Discovery Room:
The Habitat Room offers a unique way to appreciate local ecosystems. All four walls feature hand-painted murals by artist Andrea Toth with illustrations by Ginny Hall. The murals are a beautiful representation of native plant and animal species. Each wall represents a different ecosystem found in Vernon, providing an excellent opportunity to compare and contrast, including: Grasslands Ecosystem (Allan Brooks Nature Centre), Wetlands Ecosystem (Swan Lake Nature Reserve), Ponderosa Pine and Douglas Fir Ecosystem (Kalamalka Lake Provincial Park), and Moist Subalpine Ecosystem (Silver Star Provincial Park). The space also features unique surround sound audio of what you would typically hear in nature if you listen closely. You can also play our “Guess Who?” game for more informative fun! Read the clue, guess which plant or animal you think it is, then lift the flap to check your answer and test your skills.
The Discovery Room houses many wonders and is a great place for people of all ages to visit. Activities include measuring your wingspan to find out what bird you would be and matching animals to their tracks with our interactive matching game. We have many fascinating animals to observe, including Smile the turtle, Pyma the corn snake, and a live honeybee colony. Depending on when you visit us you may also see salamander nymphs, praying mantises, painted lady butterflies, and red wiggler worms. In addition to our live critters and interactive activities, there is much to be learned through our informative displays. We have many fascinating natural specimens including fur, antlers, native dried plants, and our taxidermy includes an adult black bear and many large raptors such as owls and eagles. There is something to discover for everyone!
The Nature Shop and public washrooms are also available in the Interpretive Centre.