Seney National Wildlife Refuge holds groundbreaking ceremony for new visitor center
SENEY, Mich. (WLUC) - On Wednesday, the Seney National Wildlife Refuge held a groundbreaking ceremony and open house for its new visitor center.
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Refuge Manager Sara Siekierski said this new center is replacing two buildings that were built in the 1930s.
“It’s modernizing our facilities, increasing energy efficiency accessibility, and then hopefully it brings a better experience for our visitors who come to learn about the refugee and its landscape,” said Siekierski.
Siekierski added that this 8,932-square-foot project cost over $8 million, with an additional $2 million awarded to resurface the parking area and entrance roads.
“Funding was primarily awarded through Great American Outdoor Act, with significant contributions of over $100,000 from the nonprofit organization, Friends of Seney National Wildlife Refuge, for exhibits,” said Siekierski.
Visitors’ Services Manager Sara Giles said this new facility once built will be called, ‘slow down and look until you really see.’ She also said the purpose of the theme is to teach people that are new to nature everything they need to know and more.
“We’ll have four different dioramas on the main floor showcasing our main habitat types,” said Giles. “So, there’s mixed pine, wetland, pool system, and our river and hardwoods and so one delves a little further into what you could see in those systems.”
Siekierski and Giles said they and the rest of their team are extremely thankful for all the community support.
“As well as the support from many contractors and service staff to help bring it all together and make it the best project that it can be,” said Siekierski.
Siekierski noted that this project is expected to take two to four years to complete but once it’s done it will be a great addition to the community.
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