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7/1/20 UPDATE: The New Weis Center is reopening July 6th!​  We THANK YOU for your continued support during this difficult time!

Become a Member! Your support is essential to help with the expenses of owning and operating the Center, now more than ever during the COVID-19 pandemic when we can't offer our regular programming. Memberships are on a rolling basis, so you can join or renew at any time and receive 12 full months of benefits. Members receive special benefits such as discounts on facility rentals, programs and nature camps, invitations to members-only events, and promotional items, and your membership is tax deductibleLearn more

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​The Highlands Nature Friends, Inc., is the 501(c)3 nonprofit owner and operator of The New Weis Center for Education, Arts & Recreation. With the help of our board, staff and volunteers, and the support of our partners and the surrounding community, we continue our focus on restoring the buildings and improving the gardens and grounds of our 150+ acre property, and planning a broad range of programs and events for all ages.

Our Goals

  • Create a year-round, dynamic Center with a broad range of programs and events for all ages!

  • Preserve and restore the historic buildings and grounds.

  • Develop and present programs that educate and connect people with nature and the environment.

  • Develop partnerships to bring additional unique programs and events to the Center.

What's in store for 2020?

We have exciting plans in store for 2020 and beyond! We will continue to expand our offerings of seasonal activities, educational talks and walks, and school field trips. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we've had to pause our plans to expand the age range for summer nature camp , and modify our camp plans. More special weekend family programming is coming up - both virtual and in-person - when it's advisable to do so. We'll offer more Scout badge classes, campfire circles, overnight camping, and service and Eagle projects. Through our program partners, we are pleased to present community theatre productions and acting/improv workshops (Iron Mountain Stage Co.), goat yoga (Totes Goats), primitive skills classes (Earth Living Skills), and NEW afterschool programs for kids/youth. Our "Music at Midvale" acoustic open mics and concert series continues to grow. We'll also be celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Nature Friends purchase of the property sometime later this year - stay tuned for details about that event.

Renovations to the main building continue, and we will have several 1-room cabins available to rent for retreats, corporate events, workshops and scouts. Improvements around the property are underway, as new gardens and pathways are established and existing ones receive a facelift. Our butterfly garden will get new gates, and the educational garden will be planted out to lure more birds, bees and butterflies.

WHEW... there is always a lot going on at The New Weis Center!

​​​News & Notes​​

​​▶ WE WON ANJEE's Excellence in Environmental Education Award!

Get your copy of the NEW "Taste of the Highlands" cookbook

▶ Teachers: book your 2020 Field Trip now!
Facility rentals for parties, meetings, special events. Add a nature program, guided hike, or goat yoga for a unique event​​​​.

▶ Scouts: book your camping trip or firecircle
Volunteers needed for Special Events, Gardens & Grounds, Fundraising, and Arts Committees

▶ Become a Member: support the Center and get year-round benefits

▶ Suggestions? Questions? Contact us, we'd love to hear from you!​​

Follow us on social media! Instagram @thenewweiscenter & Facebook @newweiscenter

Show your SUPPORT: Join or Renew Your Membership, or Make a 1-Time Donation!

We hope you'll join this exciting effort by becoming a member or renewing your annual membership. Memberships are on a rolling basis, so you can join at any time throughout the year. Your support is essential to cover the expenses of owning and operating the Center, including building insurance, fire alarm maintenance, bringing utilities back online, etc. - not to mention ongoing building restoration and repairs and tree work!

ONLINE: Use the Donate button to become a Member, Renew, or make an ​additional Donation by credit card or PayPal.


BY MAIL: Print, complete and mail the Membership Donation Form.


Membership at any level is appreciated, but we hope you will consider providing additional support by becoming a sustaining member (recurring monthly donation), joining at a higher level or making an additional one-time donation. We also welcome memorial donations to honor a loved one. ​Memberships and donations are fully tax deductible!​

More Ways To Help

​​​​​​​​​​​In-Person Programs​​​

​​​▶ July 11, 10:00-11:30am: Weis Woods & Water Nature WalkJoin our Senior Educator/Naturalist Sarah as we kick off the summer (and The New Weis Center's re-opening) with a woodland nature walk. As we wander along the winding paths and trails, we'll stop at some water features in the Weis woods, including our stream and wetlands. We will wade and wonder as we observe and learn about these habitats and search for creatures who call these waters home. Open to ALL ages. FREE for current Members of The New Weis Center AND The Highlands Natural Pool; $8 per person for non-members (kids 5 and under are free). Registration required.

​​▶ Starts July 13: In-person Summer Nature Camp! Ages 7-12, 10 campers per week, M/W/F, 9am-3pm  (FULL)

​​▶ Starts July 14: NEW! Highlands Junior Naturalist program for 10 lucky budding ecologists and naturalists ages 12-15. Tuesday mornings for 6 weeks, 9am-12pm.

▶ July 26: All-Acoustic Outdoors Open Mic!

▶ Coming in September: Family Campout!

Scout Programs

​​▶ July 21: BSA Merit Badge - Swimming

​​▶ July 25: IN-PERSON BSA Merit Badge - Geocaching

​​▶ August 15: IN-PERSON BSA Merit Badge - Nature
▶ VIRTUAL Girl Scout badge programs for troops are now available!

Classes consist of two ~1 hour video sessions scheduled approx a week apart, with activities for scouts to do in between sessions. Interested leaders can contact us to schedule a class. $12/scout.

  • Daisy - Eco Learner Badge
  • Brownie - Household Elf Sustainability Badge
  • Junior - Animal Habitats Badge