All the talk, planning, and dreaming are finally becoming reality, according to officials of the Deerassic Park Education Center, a 160-acre outdoor education facility located just outside of Cambridge.
Deerassic Park is undertaking the largest facility expansion in its 23-year history. Over the next 10 months, construction crews will be completing a 27,000 square foot education complex. Officials said this complex will enhance the organization’s ability to provide outdoor education to the region’s youth, and make it one of the largest outdoor education facilities in the country.
"We are so excited to start this project," stated Mark Meeker, executive director. "With the growth that we have experienced over the past 10 years, we need more room for our education programs and events."
The goal is for the new education complex to be complete and open in early 2020.
"This building is going to shape the future of Deerassic Park while meeting many needs in the community," Meeker said. "It is going to greatly increase our ability to fulfill our mission of providing outdoor education year-round."
The new education complex will include three state of the art classrooms and a 10,000 square foot multipurpose room/gymnasium, both of which will be used during the growing number of school fieldtrips, educational programs, and community events held at the park. In addition, there will be a Welcome Center that will include an information desk, gift shop, and interactive educational displays focused on nature and the outdoors. Finally, the new building will house offices for the growing staff at the park. Upon completion of the new education complex, the next step will be to convert the park’s current indoor event space into the Ohio Whitetail Hall of Fame. Meeker said the hope is that the Welcome Center and the Ohio Whitetail Hall of Fame will soon be a tourist destination open to the public on a daily basis.
Deerassic Park is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization and is funded by its annual fundraiser, the Deerassic Classic Giveaway and Outdoor Expo. The event, held at the beginning of every August, is entering its 17th year and is selling out faster than ever before, with only about 1,500 of the total 10,000 tickets left unsold this year.
"We can’t begin to thank all of our Deerassic supporters and sponsors over the years who have helped make this dream become reality," Meeker added. "It amazes us every year how many people from all across the country come to support Deerassic Park."
For more information about Deerassic Park, visit www.deerassic.com. For more about attending the Deerassic Classic Giveaway and Outdoor Expo, go to www.deerassicclassic.com. For sponsorship opportunities, email Meeker at firstname.lastname@example.org.