Wild Walk's creators, including the designer Chip Reay, who also designed The Wild Center, will be on hand for the event.
The opening also marks the first day of The Wild Center's 10th Anniversary Year, with the Walk opening on the same July 4th date the Center opened in 2006.
Wild Walk transforms the forest into a living, breathing, learning landscape through nature-driven activities and carefully designed observation points. Wild Walk's trail across the treetops experience includes a four-story twig tree house and swinging bridges, a human-sized spider's web hovering 24-feet off the ground, and a spiral walk inside a ‘dead' tree's thriving core. There's even an over-sized bald eagle's nest at the highest point where visitors can imagine life as one of the raptors that have made such an astounding comeback in the Adirondacks.
Wild Walk was funded as part of a $20 million dollar campaign to expand on the success of the original Wild Center.
Set on 81 acres, The Wild Center is a reimagining of the traditional science and nature museum. In place of a traditional collection stored in vaults, the Center mixes the living natural world inside its 54,000 square foot main building with live exhibits, and includes outdoor experiences, multi-media shows and hands-on everything.
Wild Walk will take that experience a step further. Armed with new 3D-modeling technology, Reay and his team converted 84 tons of steel into an organic microcosm that pays homage to its majestic surroundings. The entire walk was built first on computers where designers modeled every angle and element. It was then built on the outskirts of Syracuse, NY to make sure all the pieces fit together before it was trucked and re-erected in its Adirondack forest home.
"We have this great hub for exploring nature in the middle of the woods," said Stephanie Ratcliffe, The Wild Center's executive director. "This has been our dream for years, to have a chance to knock down the walls and see what happens when the roof is the sky and the floor takes you up off the ground, and then fill the whole experience with stories that let us all see the natural world from new perspectives."
Wild Walk adds a new dimension to what was already praised as the number-one attraction in the Adirondacks.
Wild Walk's July 4 debut will be the first in a three-event series to celebrate getting outside and finding new ways to see into the wild. There are follow-on events, the first on July 18 that will include live raptor flights around the campus, and a special Play Outside day August 2nd that will include chances to meet a wolf, and to learn survival skills
To learn more about Wild Walk, visit wildcenter.org/wildwalk
About The Wild Center
The Wild Center is a not-for-profit organization overseen by a Board of Trustees with the assistance of its Advisory Board. The main campus is situated on 81 acres of land within the nearly six million acres of the Adirondacks, the largest park in the contiguous United States. The Center holds a New York State Charter as an educational institution and is headquartered in the first LEED certified museum in New York. It is a finalist for the National Medal, given to museums in service of their communities.
Tracey Legat, firstname.lastname@example.org