“2010, planning meeting at the Arboretum in consideration of building a nature center.”

This was right up my alley! Since the 1990’s I had been involved in the development of the Seward Park Audubon Center (AC) in Seattle through my membership on the board of Audubon Washington. Today Seward Park AC is up and running, offering a wide array of environmental education to all within its reach. What a success!

Our Arboretum is a natural place for the development of nature programs, and the Yakima Area Arboretum’s (YAA) Board of Directors accepted the challenge of developing those programs with the hiring of its first Education Director in 2010. What progress we have made! Today the YAA has robust children’s programs with school field trips, our own summer nature day camp, a preschool program on site, and outreach to schools. Adult programs are coordinated with our naturalists, and we continue to offer interesting presentations and classes that reflect our mission to be of service to the community. And we have not forgotten our commitment to the healthy maintenance of our tree collections and gardens. What a delightful place to visit, walk the grounds and renew the spirit.

It has been my intense pleasure to have been involved with the YAA on the Board of Directors over the past 12 years and I encourage the continuing outreach to you all. Join up, donate, and participate in the “crown jewel” of Yakima!

Leslie Wahl
YAA Board Past President