Morningside Nature Center
Morningside Nature Center is Gainesville’s premier nature park.
As one of the last remaining examples of fire-dependent longleaf pine woodlands in the area, it includes more than 7 miles of trails through flatwoods, sandhills, cypress domes, and areas where native vegetation is being restored.
Morningside’s 278 acres feature a spectacular wildflower display and diverse wildlife including deer, wild turkey, box turtles, gopher tortoises, skunks, and numerous birds.
Morningside’s Living History Farm re-creates a single-family rural holding in the year 1870 and centers on an Irish immigrant family, the McCarrolls, who built the Hogan Cabin. The farm includes the cabin from the 1840’s, a board and batten kitchen, a barn and one-room schoolhouse, and an heirloom garden and heritage breed farm animals. The first Saturday of each month (Sept-May) the Farm offers live interpretive experiences.
Every Wednesday afternoon from 3-4pm September through May, visitors can visit the farm to participate in the Barnyard Buddies program to feed the animals hay and vegetables provided by park staff. This program is free of charge, but donations of carrots, squash, apples, sweet potatoes, and melons are accepted.
The nature center and education building features live reptiles and amphibians, as well
as taxidermy animals for guest viewing. The center also offers visitors a public restroom with water fountains and trail maps. The first Friday of each month September through May, the Frogs and Friends program takes place from 2-3pm in the nature center, free of charge.
Fall wildflower walks are held every Saturday in October, and Native Plant Sales are held in the fall and spring. Special events include the Cane Boil in winter and the Great Air Potato Round-Up.
- 8:00 am – 6:00 pm daily (Nov–Apr)
- 8:00 am – 8:00 pm daily (May–Oct)
- Living History Farm: Mon.–Sat., 9:00 am – 4:30 pm
Holiday Hours: closed on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year’s ay.