North Mountain Park, located next to Bear Creek in beautiful Ashland Oregon, encompasses a Nature Center, Demonstration Gardens, playing fields and several acres of wildlife-friendly open space and trails. The mission of the Nature Center, which is part of the Ashland Parks & Recreation Department, is "to promote greater community awareness, understanding and enjoyment of the local natural environment, and to foster stewardship through educational programs and activities." While the majority of programs and activities described on this Web site take place at North Mountain Park, many others are offered at outlying park and school locations throughout Ashland.
The idea of having a Nature Center at North Mountain Park arose from citizen input during the early planning phase of the park in 1995. After over a year of well-attended public meetings, the Ashland Parks Commission approved the idea of restoring the floodplain portion of the 40-acre park and developing a Nature Center on the site. Since 1997, the Ashland Parks Department has funded the planning and the implementation of the community-led vision for the Nature Center and its associated programs.