Director's Message

– by Jonathan Creel, Executive Director

Greetings Ogden Nature Center friends!

“What brought you to town?” Appropriately, has been the first question I’m asked when I meet someone new. Without fail, when people hear that I came to serve as the executive director of the Ogden Nature Center, they break out into a huge smile and say, “that’s fantastic, we love that place!”

I have been working as the new executive director for just over a month now, and I am feeling incredibly lucky to be here in Ogden and a part of this amazing organization.

Just a little about me – I grew up in the panhandle of Florida (the woods, not the beach) and spent most of my days outside playing sports and riding bikes. Looking at the wall of green underbrush all around me, and having a football coach for a father, getting outside for things other than sports was not high on my priority list. Though, when I visited my grandmother, she knew all the bird songs and captivated me with stories from her life “out west.” The seeds she planted grew deep roots and as I became older, I felt the need to travel and explore some of the areas she treasured. Eventually I visited the Rocky Mountains and the desert southwest – and that was it for me, I was hooked.

I got myself some hiking shoes, a backpack, and hit the trail – learning along the way. Exploring nature was not something I grew up with, but I sought the outdoors and took to it naturally. I’ve long been an avid birder and backpacker, and more recently discovered the world of packrafting. Director’s Message

This is the reason I am passionate about environmental education: it changed my perspective. Because opportunities to explore and learn about the outdoors are not available to all, our mission is vital. The experiences we offer at the Ogden Nature Center truly do make a difference and change lives. Here, we provide a sense of place, ignite a child’s (or an adult’s) interest, and instill the value of stewardship.

After arriving in Ogden, chatting with the board, staff, volunteers, and supporters of the Nature Center, and walking the trails listening to Yellow Warblers sing their sweet-sweet-sweet, I’m-so-sweet melodies, I already feel at home. The team and community have been extraordinarily welcoming, and I am having a blast exploring everything Ogden has to offer.

There is such a fantastic philanthropic ethic here in the Ogden community – the kind of ethic that keeps special places beautiful, vibrant, and available for generations to come. Without your support, the Ogden Nature Center wouldn’t be such an incredible oasis in the heart of Ogden.

Our mission – to unite people with nature and nurture appreciation and stewardship of the environment – echoes my own personal values. I’m honored and excited to be part of this team and to help write the next chapter of the Ogden Nature Center’s story together, with you!

Please say hello when you see me on the trails or at the Nature Center. You’ll know it’s me because I always have my binoculars at the ready!



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Sat 9 am – 4 pm
Sun Closed
(Closed on major holidays)

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