Educators and Groups

Educators and Groups

Whether you plan to stay a week or a day, Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area serves as an ideal place to take your students for a great educational experience in America’s Great Outdoors. Your students can explore 170,000 acres of fields, streams, woods, and ponds while integrating science, math, reading, writing, and exercise.

Over 100 miles of hiking trails offer students opportunities to move, discover, and learn. Trails range from short loops such as Long Creek Trail, Hematite Trail, and the Fort Henry Trail System to longer loops like Honker Trail near Woodlands Nature Station. Our North/South Trail traverses the full length of our peninsula for 58 miles.

In addition, we have a highly qualified, well-trained staff of interpreters who will work with you to maximize the educational value of your visit to Land Between the Lakes.

Give your students another reason to remember you. Student field trips to Land Between the Lakes’ natural laboratories lasts a lifetime!

Environmental Education Attractions

Turkey vulture with naturalist at Woodlands Nature Station

Woodlands Nature Station

The Woodlands Nature Station offers an exciting mix of live animal displays, native gardens, static exhibits, and knowledgeable interpretive naturalists to easily build a fun and educational curriculum about the environment, resource conservation, animal life histories, and more. We are members of the National Association for Interpretation.

Nestled in the woods between Honker and Hematite Lakes, the Nature Station also serves as a gateway to the 8,500-acre Nature Watch Area. Additionally, several scenic hiking trails embark from the Nature Station. 

Planets in space

Golden Pond Planetarium and Observatory

Our newly upgraded Golden Pond Planetarium & Observatory offers a wide range of stunning planetarium shows that are suitable for all grade levels. Open daily, you can request special showings for your students including sky observations at the Observatory. We also hold Star Parties with the Western Kentucky Amateur Astronomers in the summer months; bring your students to look through telescopes.

All of our programs correlate with Kentucky and Tennessee educational standards. The Golden Pond Planetarium now serves as a NASA Educator Resource Center. Contact us at 270.924.2243 about how you can receive educational materials provided by NASA.

Demonstation to kids at Homeplace

Homeplace 1850s Working Farm and Living History Museum

Step back in time- no time travel machine required! Give your students a first-hand view of life in 1850s western Tennessee and Kentucky with a visit to the Homeplace 1850s Farm- a real, working farm. We feature heritage breeds of livestock and heirloom plants in the fields and gardens, and your students can participate in chores and activities of the time period. We are members of the National Association for Interpretation and the Association of Living History, Farm, and Agricultural Museums.

Bison herd resting in a prairie

Elk & Bison Prairie

The 3.5-mile drive in the Elk & Bison Prairie will take your class back to a time before European settlement of the area — when elk and bison were common in Western Kentucky. Our efforts to restore native grasses and wildflowers offer up close viewing of some incredible native plants and animals which easily complements a conservation message.

Elk and bison roam free within this 700-acre enclosure. Numerous other wildlife species and a stunning array of native plants also thrive in the prairie. Wild turkeys, a variety of birds, small game, butterflies, and prairie mammals find sanctuary in the Elk & Bison Prairie. What will you discover?

In the fall, our Elk bugle during mating season sounding much like this audio clip.

Children outdoor classroom at Brandon Spring

Brandon Spring Group Center

Stay with us at Brandon Spring Group Center and create lifelong memories in our outdoor classroom! Groups who want to experience nature in a fun and safe environment, while still enjoying all the amenities of home, love staying at Brandon Spring Group Center. Brandon Spring Group Center offers accommodations for up to 128 people, delicious food services, and an activities building for inclement weather. 

Amenities include a swimming pool, sports fields, basketball courts, trails, a lake, canoes, and plenty of outdoor space to explore — providing impressionable learning experiences that last a lifetime.

Brandon Spring Group Center Brochure

School Field Trip Grant Program

Friends of Land Between the Lakes, along with its partners, offers grants to public schools within a 100-mile radius of Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area. Funding provides support for educational trips to this national recreation forest and our environmental education attractions. The School Field Trip Grant Program provides funding assistance for costs of transportation, onsite program fees, and residential expenses at our Brandon Spring Group Center.

Find more information at the Friends of Land Between the Lakes website.