Nestled at the edge of 130 acres of oak woodlands, wetlands and prairies, the Hickory Knolls Discovery Center offers a unique blend of rustic nature and contemporary comforts. The LEED-certified building features beautiful views and an open floor plan with rental and programming space. Live animal displays, including state-endangered Blanding’s turtles, offer guests up close interaction with reptiles native to Illinois. Nature programs for all ages, birthday parties and special events provide guests with many educational and social opportunities to connect to our local environment. Visit this premiere environmental discovery center in the Fox Valley today!
1911 – St. Charles Township Park District established.
2003 – Through an intergovernmental and private partnership, the St. Charles Park District acquires the 348 acres at the corner of Campton Hills and Peck Roads.
2008 – Voters approve a $25 million referendum which included construction of an environmental education center.
2011 – Hickory Knolls Discovery Center opens.
Awards & Honors
United States Green Building Council’s Leader in Energy and Environmental Design Certification
- 2011 Silver Certification
Illinois Park & Recreation Association
- 2013 Outstanding Sustainability and Conservation Program Award for the Blandings Turtle Breeding Project
- 2011 Outstanding Facility & Parks Award for the establishment of Hickory Knolls Discovery Center
- 2008 Outstanding Conservation Program Award for the Kane County Certified Naturalist Program
- 2006 Outstanding Conservation Program Award for the Native Plant Garden
- 2004 Outstanding Conservation Program Award for the Nature Program Partnership with St. Charles CUSD 303
The Conservation Foundation
- 2011 Sustainable Development Award
Astronomers Without Boarders One Star At A Time Program
- 2011 Star Park Status
St. Charles Chamber of Commerce – Civic Image Award
- 2011 for Community Partnership Project with Wredling Middle School and the City’s Tree Commission
- 2011 for the Shoreline Stabilization Projects at Mt. St. Mary Park & Norris Woods Nature Preserve
- 2011 for the Establishment of the Hickory Knolls Discovery Center
- 2000 for the Development of Delnor Woods Park
United States Environmental Protection Agency Awards in conjunction with Chicago Wilderness
- 2005 Conservation and Native Landscaping for Native Plant Garden