"New Beginnings" Christopher Vandello, Park Manager
Savannas Preserve has seen many new beginnings in its life as a state park, just as nature carved and transformed the landscape that formed its foundation. These lands that once formed a coastal dune and lagoon have changed to the Scrub Ridge and Freshwater Basin Marsh that form its landscape today. The next couple months mark the next new beginning in the park. During this time we will open the doors on a new addition to our education center, bringing in a new wealth of knowledge to youth. We will also open the gates on a new canoe launch on the St. Lucie River, bringing new recreational opportunities. Construction crews are currently putting the finishing touches on both of these projects, allowing us to provide many more outdoor activities during the cooler months ahead.
Savannas’ premiere education center initially opened its doors 14 years ago. Since then, it has been the hub of the park and has educated many school children on the "wilds of nature." The new addition includes a working science lab to provide students a more in-depth study of nature. It offers added lecture space to share the park’s precious resources to an ever expanding audience. It will be amazing to watch as the "new" and the "old" blend and expand the opportunities for park visitors.
Our other project, a new recreational facility, is being created across from the Walton Road Publix on US1. The new Evans Creek Canoe Launch will be a gateway to North Fork of the St. Lucie River. The new facility will provide visitors with greater access to recreational opportunities in this portion of the park—a chance to paddle and see a natural creek, teeming with wading birds and other wildlife, and to see a natural landscape in the middle of an ever-expanding city. The new facility will bind the two areas of the park, the Savannas-Basin Marsh and the Savannas-St. Lucie River, together as one.
Park staff and volunteers are looking forward to many exciting changes. With these new beginnings will be the creation of new memories, new recreational adventures, and new educational opportunities.
Above: An inside look at the current construction phase of the brand new lecture hall and wet lab addition to the existing Education Center.