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At the new Eco Adventures founded by Barr’s wife, Mei Len Sanchez-Barr, kids can hang out with a 20-foot, reticulated python, see scorpions up close, pet an American alligator and learn about environmental stewardship. Eco Adventures promotes positive interaction with the natural world while inspiring families to make a difference for the planet.

Tucked away in an unassuming building in a Millersville business park, Eco Adventures is a hands-on educational center that allows families to experience exotic and local animals up close and learn about conservation of natural habitats. It offers a wide range of interactive experiences from drop-in events and classes to after-school programming to birthday parties to training for teachers.

Sanchez-Barr founded the company several years ago and started offering classes and camps out of the Severna Park Community Center add Kinderfarm Park. The programs featured the live, exotic creatures she and Barr kept in the basement of their Anne Arundel County home. electricity transmission vs distribution As the business grew, it became time to move the animals and the center’s offerings into a bigger, permanent space. Last December, Eco Adventures opened its doors in Millersville.

Known as the leading herpetologist in the world, Barr was the first person to capture and study all 23 species of crocodilians in the wild. He has also hosted over 100 wildlife documentaries for the National Geographic channel and appeared on such shows as Oprah, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and The View. He’s also a master storyteller and author. power outage houston txu Now he has two elementary-aged children who are experiencing more interaction with animals than even he did growing up. Hands-On Learning

“It’s very powerful to get up close and personal. It can change a child’s life,” Barr explains. He tells the story of one boy who asked how many toes a turtle had. e payment electricity bill bangalore Barr decided he had two options: answer the question quickly and move on, or give the boy a chance to find out for himself. electricity 4th grade powerpoint After the pair climbed into the rainforest river enclosure, Barr securely held the large snapping turtle and the boy counted toes.

Barr once told a group of children how difficult it was to study crocodiles in the wild because they won’t let humans near them. One young boy suggested that a crocodile costume might allow Barr to get really close. Barr took that suggestion back to National Geographic and a custom croc costume was designed, allowing Barr to get closer to crocodiles in the wild. Exploring Eco Adventures’ offerings

The Underwater Cave Room is where arts and crafts and messy experiments take place. Murals adorn the walls and several aquariums feature local and exotic animals. electricity merit badge pamphlet The African Room is located upstairs and is mostly used for corporate events and photo opportunities. Visitors can have their picture taken with an exotic animal in front of a screen that makes it look like they are in the rainforest, on an African safari or even underwater.

The Rainforest Room, the largest of the three, is where much of the programming and animal encounters take place. The python, Gigantor, lives in this room (don’t worry, he’s well contained) and an enclosure mimics the edge of a riverside where a crocodile, an alligator or a large snapping turtle may be hanging out. The Rainforest Room hosts everything from toddler drop-in classes to after-school programs to evening family lectures.

Eco Adventures offers an array of educational experience including drop-in days, Friday night drop-off programs, Rainforest yoga classes, family fun nights, sleep overs in the Rainforest, guest speakers, field trips, camps and school outreach. A Therapeutic Explorers program pairs a certified special education teacher and children with special needs. Teacher training sessions are held twice a month to encourage teachers to add more conservation concepts into the classroom. And soon, Eco Adventures hopes to offer family ecotourism trips to places such as the Florida Keys and Costa Rica.