The Agassiz Environmental Learning Center is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit corporation dedicated to providing high quality environmental education programs and premier recreation experiences utilizing the diverse and unique ecosystems of the scenic Fertile Sand Hills.
In pursuit of our mission we:
*Provide hands-on, engaging education programs for all ages with emphasis on youth
*Emphasize protection of the rare ecosystems found at the Fertile Sand Hills
*Provide a space for mental and physical wellness through a variety of recreational opportunities
Education is at the heart of AELC. We serve northwest Minnesota by providing high quality education programming to schools, libraries, and so much more.
From special events and nature play dates, to our public programs, we aim to help people of all ages cultivate a special connection with nature.
The Sand Hill River and its valley have produced a rich lowland forest community. Wildflowers, ferns, shrubs and trees greet visitors. Expect to meet a variety of songbirds, waterfowl, and birds of prey.
The north facing bluffs harbor an unusual community of intermixed birch and boreal forest species. Steep bluffs and deep valleys were carved by the Sand Hill River over thousands of years.
A rare experience awaiting visitors is a hike through the oak savanna. This prairie landscape has gnarled bur oaks scattered throughout, and was once maintained by naturally occurring fire and bison.
Wide-open expanses of shifting sand dunes were once the predominant feature of the Fertile Sand Hills. Vegetation has stabilized the dunes. Remnant patches offer a window into geological history and host some of the site's rarest species.
Visitors are treated to beautiful panoramas and rolling hills covered by grasses and wildflowers. An amazing variety of plants and insects are found on these dry sand prairies.
Follow the winding course of the Sand Hill River as these dancing waters flow over Glacial Lake Agassiz beach ridges on their way west to the Red River, and ultimately northward into Hudson Bay.