Hormel Nature Center Launched Fundraiser for "Greener" Nature Center

Posted at: 01/25/2014 9:37 PM
Updated at: 01/25/2014 10:51 PM
By: Sean Boswell

Hormel Nature Center announces plans on expansion and improvements
Hormel Nature Center announces plans on expansion and improvements

(ABC 6 News) -- Renovations could come to the Hormel Nature Center as soon as 2016.

"In the United States, we are four or five percent of the population, and we use 25% of the world’s energy," said Hormel Nature Center Director Larry Dolphin.

Dolphin says he hopes more than half the energy used by 2050 is renewable. Dolphin and the center are trying to do what they can to help by launching a fundraising campaign for a new Visitors Center he says will be off the electrical grid.

"Make it as renewable as we can... Wind, solar shield, thermal, look at all aspects of how we can be more energy efficient and set a great example for the community," said Dolphin.

Dolphin says all indications point to the Hormel Foundation being very supportive of the new center, but they'll need more donations to reach the $3.5 million the center will cost.

"We’ll be looking at legacy grants potentially; we'll be looking at private dollars, private individuals that might be able to provide small dollar or big dollar to actually get there," said Dolphin.

What will be in the center?

"Conservation displays related to energy, water, soils, habitat."

Dolphin says the center is an educational tool to make the world a better place to live in.

"They will learn about the outdoors, they'll appreciate their natural world, and look at how they can protect it better and live in a way that is more sustainable and live in a way where you're living more lightly on the planet," said Dolphin

The current Visitors Center has been around since 1975. The goal, according to dolphin, is to raise the money within two years and start construction in 2016. City council will vote on final approval for the center on Feb. 3.