Located on the Cape May Harbor, come visit us today. The Cape May Nature Center offers a number of free things to do, explore the harbor, climb the Observation Deck or check out the Nature Nook Learning Center
In addition to our many programs, the Trucksess Welcome Center features a gallery with exhibits from local artists, a nature store, a second story viewing deck and a third story viewing tower. We even have loaner binoculars that you can use while on the deck!
Visit the Cape May Nature Center Today!
The Nature Center of Cape May
1600 Delaware Avenue
Cape May, NJ 08204
Phone: (609) 898-8848
If you would like to download a printable calendar of Cape May Nature Center events please click here.
Summer 2013 Programs June through August 2013
FREE THINGS TO DO at the Nature Center of Cape May
- Observation Deck and Three-StoryTower
- The Lounge
- Seasonal Aquaria
- Nature Store
- Children’s Play Area
- Path to Discovery Children’s Garden
- Wildlife Habitat Meadows
- Beachcombing the Harbor
- Picnic Tables
- Spectacular Sunsets
- Scavenger Hunts
Don’t Forget to Visit the Cape May Nature Center Gift Center – Your visit to the Nature Center is not complete without a stop in our gift shop located within the Trucksess Welcome Center. Our store offers a variety of nature inspired merchandise relevant to our region. We carry books and apparel for adults and children, educational toys, and gifts. In addition, the store is stocked with a wide array of bird feeders and bird seed. You are welcome to come in and browse. We’re sure you will find something for everyone in your family. Members receive a 10% discount on their purchases.
Explore Cape May Nature Center Programs Offered This Year
Program Registration Most programs require pre registration with payment. You may register by phone at 609.898.8848 with a credit card. We reserve the right to cancel programs. Refunds are available only if we cancel the event. Walk-ins are welcome on a space-available basis. Become a member of New Jersey Audubon and receive discounts in the gift shop and on many programs!
- SALT MARSH SAFARI* Daily, May 27 through September 30 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Welcome aboard the JerseyCape’s original wildlife tour boat, the forty-foot Skimmer, and explore Cape May’s beautiful coastal wetlands and wildlife with experienced naturalists. Fun and educational for all ages! To preregister, please call 609.884.3100 and tell them you were referred by the NATURE CENTER OF CAPE MAY. **Boat leaves from Cape May Inlet Marina, across from the Two Mile Beach Unit of the Cape May National Wildlife Refuge on Ocean Drive between Cape May and Wildwood Crest. Cost: $27 adults, $15 children.
- FATHER’S DAY FISHING TRIP Sunday, June 16 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. special Father’s Day Fishing trip…just for you and dad! Join us on the Cape May Lady for a four-hour fishing trip. Sailing from South Jersey Marina; the trip includes your fishing rods, tackle and bait to bring home the big one! Please call the boat directly at 609.780.7900 to make reservations.Cost: $35 adults, $25 children.
- FAMILY FISHING TRIPS Tuesdays and Thursdays, May 28 to August 29 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. A special Family Fishing Trip…bring the whole family! Join us on the Cape May Lady for a four-hour fishing trip. Sailing from South Jersey Marina; the trip includes your fishing rods, tackle and bait to bring home the big one! Please call the boat directly at 609.780.7900 to make reservations, and ask about other Cape May Lady fishing trips. Cost: $35 adults, $25 children.
- CRABBING 101* Tuesdays, June 18 through August 27 Call for tour times. Times vary due to tides. Delicious and beautiful, blue crabs are abundant in saltwater bays and creeks. Come aboard the original Skimmer, a comfortable forty-foot, flat-bottomed tour boat for a hands-on crabbing experience and demonstration. You can keep any legal size crab you catch! All equipment and materials are supplied. Please preregister by calling the Skimmer at 609.884.3100 and tell them you were referred by the NATURE CENTER OF CAPE MAY. **Tours depart from Dolphin Cove Marina, across from the Two Mile Beach Unit of the Cape May National Wildlife Refuge, on Ocean Drive between Cape May and Wildwood Crest. All children must be accompanied by an adult. Cost: $29 adults, $18 children.
- SISTER CAPE BIKE TOUR Saturday, June 8 (Rain Date: Sunday, June 9) Saturday, July 20 (Rain Date: Sunday, July 21) Saturday, August 10 (Rain Date: Sunday, August 11) 9:00 a.m. to approximately 6:00 p.m. Meet your guide for a tour of “the other side”; our sister cape, CapeHenlopenState Park and the Junction & Breakwater Trail connecting Lewes and RehobothBeach. Expect to cover approximately 20 miles throughout the day, but know that frequent stops will occur to explore the natural and cultural gems of the region. We will step back in the rich WWII history of Fort Miles Historic area, climb the old bunker and lookout tower and stop by the SeasideNatureCenter and fishing pier. Next, a short tour through historic Lewes and a marina-side stop for lunch allows a break before we tackle the converted railroad bed trail to Rehoboth. Time permitting; we may also take a side trip to the University of Delaware’s Hugh R. Sharp Campus in Lewes to check out the wind turbine we can see from our Cape May shoreline. Bring your own bike or bike rentals can be arranged on the Delaware side. Pack refreshments and lunch, or bring money for our stop at the marina in Lewes. Meet at the Cape May-Lewes Ferry terminal by 8:30 a.m. Preregistration is required. Cost: members $50, nonmembers $70 (includes a round trip walk-on ferry pass).
- HARBOR FEST 2013 WEEKEND Join the Nature Center of Cape May and its community partners for the sixth annual Harbor Fest weekend, which will take place along Delaware Avenue, Cape MayHarbor beaches and the NatureCenter’s environmental education campus. There will be lots of fresh seafood, live music, a blessing of the waters, a kayak regatta, educational programs, fun children’s activities, and arts and crafts vendors. Additional special events on Father’s Day Sunday including an Anything That Floats But A Boat (your own vessel) Regatta and a Bike Cape May Scavenger Hunt. For more information, please contact us at 609.898.8848.
- STREET FESTIVAL: A CELEBRATION OF SEAFOOD AND SONG Saturday, June 15, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Rain Date: Sunday, June 16 The Big Event: you name it, it’s happening on Delaware Avenue: live music, seafood and scallop challenge, arts and craft vendors, marine education tent, water sports, beer garden and so much more. Cost: Free admission.
- PADDLE FOR A PURPOSE: A KAYAK REGATTA Saturday, June 15, 1:00 pm (rain date Sunday, June 16th) To benefit New Jersey Audubon’s Nature Center of Cape May’s Good Neighbor Fund, a scholarship fund to allow children of personnel from the neighboring U.S. Coast Guard base to attend our Summer Children’s Programs. Join us for an approximately 2 hour, guided tour through the waters of Cape MayHarbor and its tidal tributaries. What a great way to say thanks to the men and women who work to protect our waters and the people who use them! Cost: $40 single, $70 double, $100 Family (2 doubles) or $20 bring your own kayak. (Includes a tee shirt and water.)
- ANYTHING THAT FLOATS BUT A BOAT REGATTA Sunday, June 16, 12:00 p.m. Teams of families or friends of all ages are invited to build fun and creative watercraft to participate in the Nature Center of Cape May’s Second Annual “Anything That Floats But A Boat” Regatta. Your mission: make your own floatable craft out of materials that can be found around the house such as milk jugs, lawn furniture, cardboard, soda bottles, PVC, duct tape; well, just about anything that wasn’t meant to be a boat! Just remember, you have to be able to paddle it! Join us for an Awards Ceremony following the Regatta. There will be extra consideration for costumes, team spirit, and creativity! For more information and a registration form, please contact the Nature Center of Cape May at 609.898.8848 or visit our website at www.njaudubon.org/center/nccm Cost: $20.
- BIKE CAPE MAY SCAVENGER HUNT – FATHER’S DAY ADDITION Sunday, June 16, 11:00am -4:00 p.m. It’s not a race, it’s an adventure! What a great way to spend Father’s Day and explore our town while having some family fun along the way. Pick up the scavenger hunt ID card at the NatureCenter and then follow a designated path around town hunting for the letters in signs that make up the words BIKE CAPE MAY. Bring your own bikes or rent them in town. Special family gift packages to all groups who complete the challenge successfully. Cost: Free (But donations are much appreciated.)
- HARBOR SAFARI Tuesdays and Thursdays, June 18 through August 29 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Encounter an incredible diversity of marine life as you help pull a twenty-foot seine net through the shallows of Cape MayHarbor. You will learn about the lives of the animals that inhabit our coastal waters, including the fascinating and ancient Horseshoe Crab. A great family outing! Walk-ins are welcome; no pre-registration necessary. Cost: $10 adults, $5 children ages 3-12, children under 3 free.
- CAPE MAY FAMILY BIRDING CRUISE Fridays from June 21 to September 6 10:00 a.m. to noon Take an up close look at osprey, egrets and bald eagles along with many other birds of the coastal salt marsh. See osprey chicks being fed and learning to fly and fish. Visit colonies of nesting gulls and terns. Get a close look at the crabs, fish and sea life that make up this fragile eco-system. This is a great trip to introduce kids to birding and an excellent opportunity for kids interested in photography to get some great shots. The OSPREY departs from the Miss Chris Marina in Cape May just across from the Lobster House. We have plenty of binoculars onboard for everyone to use and an open front deck for better viewing and photography. For information and reservations, please call 609.898.3500. Visit birdingbyboat.com to purchase tickets and to see our other scheduled trips. Cost: $26 adults, $15 children ages 7 to 12, children under 6 free.
- CYCLING THE SOUTHERN CAPE* Wednesdays, June 26 through August 28 9:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Hop on your bike and join our Nature Center of Cape May naturalists for a leisurely twelve-mile tour of the most beautiful natural areas of CapeIsland. Bring a helmet, water, sunscreen, and a bike. If needed, please call us for a list of local bike rental merchants. Please arrive by 9:20 a.m.; the tour leaves promptly at 9:30. Pre-registration is highly recommended. Cost: members $8 adults, $5 children ages 3 to 12; nonmembers $10 adults, $7 children ages 3 to 12; children under 3 free.
Special Links to the Cape May Nature Center Programs
How you can help
The Nature Center of Cape May does not receive national, state or county funding for its operations. We are supported by memberships, program fees, special grants, fundraisers and donations.
Membership with NCCM is through our parent organization, NJ Audubon. Not only do you gain the membership privileges at our center but also the eight other NJ Audubon centers throughout the state. Click here for more information on how to become a NJ Audubon member.
A special fund has been created called the Path to Discovery. This “Buy a Brick” campaign is targeted for our children’s garden. Click here for a Path to Discovery Brochure.
In-kind or monetary donations targeted specifically for the Nature Center of Cape May can be sent directly to:
NJA Nature Center of Cape May
Attention: Gretchen Whitman, Director
1600 Delaware Ave.
Cape May, NJ 08204
Join or Give a Gift Membership to New Jersey Audubon New Jersey Audubon members are in good company. We’re over 22,000 strong! By being a member, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that you’re a part of a team helping to preserve wildlife and at-risk, natural habitats.
Join online today and receive New Jersey Audubon’s Guide to Some Familiar Birds of New Jersey, the perfect pocket-sized, folding guide highlighting more than 140 familiar species. This handy, laminated guide is ideal for birders of all levels and is FREE with your first-time New Jersey Audubon membership.
PLEASE NOTE: Do not use this page to join the Cape May Bird Observatory. If you would also like to join CMBO, you can do so by clicking here.
Join today and receive this handy laminated bird guide filled
with more than 140 clear, colorful, easy-to-identify illustrations.
- $30 INDIVIDUAL membership (special rate for new members only…regular rate $39)
- Membership card Subscription to New Jersey Audubon magazine Advance notice and discounted member rates on programs and field trips Discounts on books, optics, and nature gift items
- $40 FAMILY membership (special rate for new members only…regular rate $49) Membership card may be used for your entire family Subscription to New Jersey Audubon magazine Advance notice and discounted member rates on programs and field trips for the entire family Discounts on books, optics, and nature gift items for the entire family
- $100 KINGLET (formerly FRIEND) membership: All of the basic membership benefits plus one Ticket to Discovery (for a free program at any of our nature centers – up to $20 value).
- $250 GOLDFINCH membership: All of the basic membership benefits plus invitations to two major donor field trips guided by New Jersey Audubon Society’s leading naturalists, and a listing in our annual honor roll.
- $500 GOLDEN EAGLE membership: All of the basic membership benefits plus invitations to two major donor field trips and one Exceptional Excursion, and a listing in our annual honor roll.
- $1,000 ROYAL TERN membership: All of the basic membership benefits plus invitations to two major donor field trips and two Exceptional Excursion, and a listing in our annual honor roll.
- $2,500 LIFE membership: A one-time membership fee which entitles you to all of the basic AND patron membership benefits. You’ll also get a Life Member certificate, life member pin, and a listing in our annual report.
- $3,000 LIFE COUPLE membership: A one-time membership fee which entitles two people to all of the basic AND patron membership benefits. You’ll also get a Life Member certificate, life member pins, and a listing in our annual report.