​​​​​​​​​​The Highlands Nature Friends, Inc., a 501(c)3 nonprofit, is the proud owner and operator of the former Weis Ecology Center in Ringwood, New Jersey! Located in the beautiful Highlands Region of northern NJ, we renamed this special place The New Weis Center for Education, Arts & Recreation to reflect our expanded mission.

With the help of our board and volunteers, and the support of our partners, sponsors and the surrounding communities, we continue to focus on restoring the main building for the multiple uses we have planned, improving the landscape of our 150+ acre property, and planning a variety of programs and events for all ages. It's an exciting time at Weis!

Our Goals

  • Establish a dynamic Center with a broad range of programs and events for all ages!

  • Bring back popular educational and recreational programs enjoyed in years past.

  • Preserve and restore the historic buildings and grounds.

  • Create partnerships to bring additional programs and events to the Center.

  • Offer facilities where members, groups, non-profits and companies can host rustic events.

Programs, Partnerships and Events

We have exciting plans for 2017 and beyond! We will offer seasonal family activities, host school field trips, Scout merit badge classes and campfires, offer archery and maps & compass skills classes (from L.L. Bean Outdoor Discovery School), theater productions (from Iron Mountain Stage Co.), art and photography exhibits, guided nature walks, and a guided hike series (Saturday mornings). Renovations on the main building and cabins will continue as well, and bat houses and a gaga ball pit are being built as Eagle Scout projects!

Be Part Of This Exciting Effort - Become a Member!

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

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

Member Benefits

  • Membership helps us restore the buildings and grounds and develop programs for all ages!
  • Get email updates about the latest Weis news and upcoming programs and events.
  • Free use of the covered pavilion and picnic tables.
  • All members receive discounts on Weis programs, events and facility rental fees.
  • All members receive discounts from our Partners, including the Highlands Natural Pool and Iron Mountain Stage Company.
  • Members at the Friend, Patron and Benefactor level receive a reusable, aluminum Weis water bottle.
  • Members at the Benefactor level are entitled to 2 free tickets to an Iron Mountain Stage Company performance at Weis.

Membership Categories (as of 8/1/17)

  • Basic: $35

  • Supporter: $60

  • Advocate: $100

  • Friend: $250

  • Patron: $500

  • Benefactor: $2,000 and above

The Highlands Nature Friends qualifies as a 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization.

Membership and donations are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law!

Every Membership Is Important!

  • Membership at any level shows your support for this journey to bring back popular programs and events, and develop new offerings for the community and region.

  • Your continued membership donations will be essential to cover the additional expenses we now face with owning and operating the Center, including building insurance, fire alarm maintenance, bringing utilities back online, etc. - not to mention building repairs and tree work!

More Ways To Help

All Material Copyright - All Rights Reserved - 2017 - The Highlands Nature Friends, Inc.

News & Notes

Photography: Vera Lazaar

Join or Renew your membership for 2017!

Upcoming Programs & Events at Weis

  • ​​Register for Winter Break Day Camp! Dec 26-29, 9am-3pm, ages 6-10. Discounts for Weis members, siblings, multiple days.
  • Dec 9 & 10Holiday performance by Iron Mountain Stage Co! Holiday stories, songs and skits in a warm and woodsy setting.
  • ​Dec 16 & 28: Goat Yoga from Totes Goats! Certified instructors, vinyasa yoga - and we dare you not to smile. SOLD OUT
  • Ongoing: "Joann's Gallery"! New exhibit of local landscape and nature photographs by Ringwood resident Joann Lightbody.

New Membership / Renewals

JOIN - New Membership/Renewals