In May the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge opened their beautiful new Visitor Center to the public. Envisioned as a gathering place for the community, the new center is also gateway to the Kenai for visitors from around the world. Design elements integrate the building seamlessly into the landscape, prompting visitors to connect to the surrounding environment, from the striking, true-to-life, bronze statue of a bull moose, named “Majesty of the Kenai” to the tactile interpretive exhibits that illuminate the active world of Kenai Refuge wildlife.The state-of-the-art building is cantilevered into the boreal forest canopy and towering windows provide a view into the habitat of the chickadees, nuthatches, woodpeckers, eagles, and other wildlife protected by the Refuge. Intricate details abound, like salmon inlays in the floor that lead your way to the interactive exhibit hall. The Visitor Center was built with the environment in mind and is on track for LEED certification!
The Refuge hosted a fabulous Grand Opening Celebration on May 30th. Families from local communities, as well as visitors from afar enjoyed performances by local musicians and a Kenaitze dance group, tours of the new facility, and much more. Below are some photos of the fun-filled day!