The Cape Fear Botanical Garden offers public programs for families, children, and adults looking to engage with nature in fun and interesting new ways. Our programs foster a love for the outdoors and the natural world. Children’s class always include hands-on activities and outdoor explorations. We offer the following public program series:
The Garden School
Looking for a way to help your child get excited about learning in an age of virtual classes? Garden School provides a joyful, outdoor, exploratory experience that supplements home school, virtual school, or part-time in-person learning. Trained educators will guide your child through grade level science curriculum with a combination of home explorations, virtual classes, and socially distanced outdoor programs that emphasize active learning with hands-on experiments, artistic creation, and nature discovery. Learn More!
Our FREE preschool story and nature time is presented in partnership with Cumberland County Public Library & Information Center. Each moth we explore a different natural science theme with fun stories, songs, and a craft or game. Join us for either the 10 am or the 11 am session. Classes are typically held on the first Tuesday and Saturday of every month.
The Garden offers Preschool classes exploring nature topics like leaping frogs, silly salamanders, or winter wildlife. Preschool classes are offered several times a month and parents should expect to stay with their child for the entire class.
Nature Play Day:
Every month the Garden dedicates one day to a hosting a fun filled play time party for children ages 2-6. Nature Play Days are free with Garden Admission or Membership and include a combination of exciting indoor and outdoor activities with a new theme month. Activities can include lawn games, crafts, touch tables, a chance to meet live education animals, Garden Scavenger Hunts and more! Children can play and explore each activity at their own pace.
The Garden offers a 3 day nature camp for Preschoolers during the month of January. Just for 4 and 5 year olds. Our Nature Stories Camp features a new story each day along with themed games, crafts, snacks, and outdoor winter wildlife explorations. This year’s camp will be held from January 14th – 16th. Please see the Camps page for more information (put a link here).
For School Age Children
The Garden offers home school programs twice a month for children ages 6+. Each program has a unique theme such as Tree ID, Winter Wildlife, or Nature Journaling. Older and younger students often work in separate groups so the classes are appropriate for all school ages. Home School classes are drop-off programs and there is $5 supply fee in addition to Garden Admission or Membership.
The Garden offers twice monthly afterschool drop-off programs for ages 5-10. Each class features a new nature theme centered around an outdoor exploration. Past Afterschool topics have included: Animal Athletes, Pond Dipping, and Incredible Insects. Unlike Homeschool classes, Afterschool programs focus on simpler activities limited ages 10 and under and do not require a supply fee.
Kid’s Night Out at the Garden:
Let the kid’s have a fun night out at the Garden while their parents have the night off! Kid’s Night Out at the Garden programs feature a new theme each month. For ages 8-12, the Kid’s Night Out programs include a night time nature hike, crafts, science experiments, and chance to roast s’mores around the campfire.
For All Ages
Family Programs: CFBG Family Programs are designed for all ages, preschool through adult. Each class explores a seasonal topic through hands-on science investigation, outdoor walks, and engaging crafts. Previous topics have included Carnivorous Plants, Butterfly Catching, and Fall Nature.