The Wilderness Center Special Interest Clubs

The Wilderness Center is the home to special interest clubs. People who share common interests come together to explore their hobbies and serve the community. These special interest clubs are a vital piece of The Wilderness Center community. Each club has its own officers and plans its own activities. (Some may collect dues and produce newsletters; others are highly informal.) The only requirement is membership in The Wilderness Center.

For information about any of our clubs, call TWC at (330) 359-5235. You are also welcome to just visit a meeting or club event.


The Wilderness Center Astronomy Club

TWC’s Astronomy Club is a friendly group of people who share a common interest in astronomy. We offer programs and projects that appeal to a variety of interests, knowledge, and skills. We have a special interest in school education through TWC’s in-house and outreach programs. We have members with all levels of expertise, from newcomers to advanced amateurs. We welcome anyone who has an interest in the night sky. We meet monthly for a program and meeting. Public observing is held at TWC’s Astronomy Education Building on the first Friday of each month at 8 p.m., along with a planetarium program regardless of the weather. Many members also bring their own telescopes. See the website http://www.twcac.org/ details and more information.

The Wilderness Center Backpackers and Dayhikers

Backpackers and Dayhikers is an organization for active adults. We typically schedule two-day hikes and one weekend back trip each month. Day hikes are usually in northeast Ohio, while backpack trips are most frequently in Ohio, Pennsylvania or West Virginia. The club plans an annual one-week trip to a destination in the western U.S. Past trips have included Wyoming, Colorado and Oregon. Club meetings are held at The Wilderness Center on the third Friday of each month, starting at 7:00 p.m. We welcome anyone who shares our love of the outdoors and the beauty and challenges it offers. For more information please visit our website http:www.twchikers.com


The Wilderness Center Bird Club

Our organization was established in 1988 under the leadership of Henry Merkle. Our membership leads monthly bird walks the third Saturday of each month on The Wilderness Center trails. Other Bird Club events include monthly day trips to surrounding areas, weekend birding trips throughout the year, and our annual picnic in July. The annual business meeting is held in September at TWC with a potluck dinner to plan our calendar. We sponsor and lead several programs during the year for adults and children alike. Our “backyard birding program”, held in the fall, provides families with information on the “how-tos” of planning a feeding station at your home, and a fun project for the children to take home. Other programs feature naturalists, reports from exciting birding adventures, and other instructional birding topics. Programs are for individuals and families interested in learning more about birds and their habitats. TWC Bird Club members also participate in the annual Audubon Christmas Bird Count and International Migratory Bird Day in the Black Swamp area of  NW Ohio.

Please join us on Facebook under TWC Bird Club. If you “liked” our previous FB page – “The Wilderness Center Bird Club” you will be invited to join our new page. Otherwise, just find us on FB (under TWC Bird Club), and request to be added. Be sure to check out the new waterfall and pond which was donated in fond memory of founders Henry Merkle and Winnie Sarno, and can be seen from the Observation Room. For more information call 330-359-5235, or email us.


The Wilderness Center’s Botanizers Club

The TWC Botanizers is a field trip-oriented group of persons who like to enjoy wildflowers. The first regular meeting was held in 1985. From the beginning, the orientation to programming has been to observe plants in the field. Indoor meetings are confined to the winter months where a minimum of time is spent on business and the majority of time is used on either botanical entertainment or instruction. Knowledge of plant botany is not necessary to join the group, only interest in wild plants and a desire to learn about them. Questions, please contact woodfern.22@gmail.com.

The Wilderness Center Geocaching Club

The Geocaching Club combines outdoor adventure with the latest GPS technology. Meetings are listed in the Center’s Members’ Newsletter. To learn more about Geocaching visit http://www.geocaching.com


book stackThe Wilderness Center’s Reader’s Group

The Nature Book Group is a reading and discussion group with a theme of nature, the environment, and our participation in the natural world.  Selections may be fact or fiction, about observations or issues, and have included biography, essay, and memoir. The Nature Book Group meets at The Wilderness Center on the first Saturday of September, November, January, March and May.  Time is 2:00 – 3:30. This is an informal group with no dues.  Drop-ins are welcome at any meeting they find to be of interest.



The Wilderness Center Nature Photo Club                            

TWC’s Nature Photo Club is a group of people interested in improving their picture taking skills. All levels of skill are represented from the beginner “point and shooters” to a few “pros”. The programs, field trips, and contests are all designed to improve the photography capabilities of those involved. The club provides members with opportunities for showing accomplishments, having work critiqued, sharing information, receiving instruction, and entering contests.

The Wilderness Center Woodcarving Club

Are you fascinated by the ability to take a nondescript block of wood and transform it into something useful or a work of art? If so, join TWC’s Woodcarvers. The club meets from 9 until noon on the second and fourth Saturdays each month. Learning is accomplished with members sharing their expertise and the presentation of a little project each month. These monthly projects give us the opportunity to get acquainted with many techniques as well as a variety of materials and styles of carving from whittling to detailed woodburning. TWC members of all skill levels from beginners to skilled carvers are welcome. Don’t miss the Woodcarving Show during the third weekend in September. Enjoy the carvings, attend a workshop, win prizes, have lunch, and spend the day at this free event for all ages!