About Us | Programs | Outdoor Recreation | Camps | Animals | Special Events


Dedicated To Building Connections With Nature

The mission of the Prairie Park Nature Center is to promote an appreciation of the importance of conserving the natural world through hands-on environmental and conservation education.
The nature center is free to all visitors.

Visit Us


2730 Harper St.
Lawrence, KS 66046


Prairie Park Nature Center is located on the east side of Lawrence. Find us in the neighborhood via 27th Street off of Haskell Avenue.

Hours of Operation

9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

About the Nature Center

Prairie Park Nature Center opened in 1999 as a 100-acre nature preserve on the east side of Lawrence. The preserve incorporates wetlands, woodlands and prairie habitats and a five acre lake.

Visitors may see a wide variety of native Kansas wildlife on the property including beavers, deer, bobcats and birds of prey.

The nature center preserve and education building are operated by the Lawrence Parks and Recreation Department and funded by City of Lawrence sales tax revenue.

Prairie Park offers walking trails for bird watchers and wildlife enthusiasts as well as educational programs to the public, schools and local groups.

The education building features natural habitat dioramas, displays and live animals, including a live bird of prey collection with eagles, owls, hawks and falcons.

The nature center conducts a wide variety of environmental and recreation programs for the public, schools, scouts, adults, and other groups.

Picture of Children hiking at Mary's Lake

Mary’s Lake

Mary’s Lake is just a short walk from the education building and is open for public fishing. This lake participates in the state community and is stocked with fish by the Kansas Department of Wildlife & Parks throughout the spring and summer.

A state fishing license is required for persons ages 16 to 65. Limits are posted at the lake.

View the Map of Trails at Prairie Park Nature Center»