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Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden and Bird Sanctuary

Theodore Wirth Regional Park
1 Theodore Wirth Pkwy
Minneapolis, MN 55422

Homeschool classesField tripsGetting there

Located in Theodore Wirth Regional Park, the Garden was founded by Minneapolis botanist and school teacher Eloise Butler and opened on April 27, 1907. She and other botany teachers successfully petitioned the Minneapolis Park Board to create a natural botanic garden to preserve native flora as the city grew. When visitors step behind the rustic gates at Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden and Bird Sanctuary, they quickly forget they’re in the middle of the city. A meandering trail takes visitors deep into nature’s wonderland, the quiet accented with the sounds of birds, insects, frogs and wind in the trees. The garden provides spectacular seasonal displays of native wildflowers in woodland, wetland and prairie areas. Each area creates a different habitat that fosters different types of plants, animals and birds. Nestled in the garden is the Martha Crone Visitor’s Shelter where you will find natural history displays, natural history reference materials and friendly staff and volunteers waiting to help with Garden-related questions.

Phone: 612-499-9244
Email: ebwg [at] minneapolisparks.org

Hours of Operation: The Garden is open from April 1st to October 15th from 7:3am to an hour before sunset. Programs are available 7 days a week from 9am to closing.


Homeschool classes

The Garden offers Nature Explorers, Young Naturalists and Advanced Naturalist homeschool programs on topics from spring time to astronomy to water quality and everything in between.

Dress for the weather and plan to do a lot of walking outside. Programs go out in all kinds of weather, but in the case of severe weather, a program may be rescheduled.

Cost per child/student: $6 to $12, depending on program length
Cost per adult/educator: free

Minimum class size: usually 5 students
Maximum class size:
10 students for Advanced Naturalist programs and 20 students for Young Naturalist and Nature Explorer programs

Target grade level: preschool through 12th grade

Sibling policy: All participating children must be enrolled in the program. Non-participating siblings may accompany their parents.
Parent/guardian/educator policy: A responsible adult must remain in the Garden during the program but may choose to remain with the class or not.

Cancellation policy/Cancellation deadline: varies

For more information, contact call 612-499-9244 or email ebwg [at] minneapolisparks.org


Field trips

Available field trip topics range from spring time to astronomy to water quality and everything in between.

Dress for the weather and plan to do a lot of walking outside. Programs go out in all kinds of weather, but in the case of severe weather, a program may be rescheduled.

Cost per child/student: $5 to $12 depending on program length
Cost per adult/educator: free

Minimum group size: 8 students
Maximum group size: 20 students for Young Naturalists and Nature Explorers, 10 students for Advanced Naturalists

Target grade level: preschool through high school

Sibling policy: All participating children should be enrolled in the program. Non-participating siblings may accompany their parents.
Parent/guardian/educator policy: All children should be accompanied by a responsible adult unless other arrangements are made in advance and contact information is left with staff.

Cancellation policy/Cancellation deadline: varies

Gathering Place Recommendations: At Wirth Lake Beach parking lot. Naturalists can meet your group at the parking lot and guide you to the garden.

For more information, contact call 612-499-9244 or email ebwg [at] minneapolisparks.org


Getting There

Parking Information: Free parking at Wirth Lake Beach.

Driving Directions:

From I-394: Exit I-394 at Penn Ave and follow Penn Ave north. Turn left at Glenwood Ave. The Theodore Wirth Beach Parking Lot will be on the right.

From Hwy 100: Exit Hwy l00 at Glenwood Ave. Turn left on Glenwood Ave. The Theodore Wirth Beach Parking Lot will be on the left.

From Hwy. 55: From Hwy 55 turn south onto Theodore Wirth Parkway. Turn left on Glenwood Ave. The Theodore Wirth Beach Parking Lot will be on the left.

Metro Transit routes: 9C, 9D, and 9E



Information subject to change. Please check with Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden and Bird Sanctuary for the most current information. Last updated on Mon, Aug 22, 2016.

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