At the Battelle Darby Creek Nature Center, visitors learn in hands-on ways as they explore the extraordinary biodiversity of the Darby Creek Watershed. This flagship facility in the Columbus and Franklin County Metro Parks system features state-of-the-art exhibits designed by InterActive Group educating visitors about the watershed, the animals and plants that call it home, and our role in maintaining its environmental quality.

At the heart of the center is a 60’ Living Stream exhibit designed and built by InterActive Group. The most advanced one of its kind in the world, this large scale freshwater aquatic exhibit is home to over 40 species of local animals and plants. The biology of the nearby Darby creeks is replicated and, in a first for this type of aquarium, requires no mechanical filtration.

Visitors explore aspects of scientific inquiry as they:

  • Get a multi-media “Big Picture” of the watershed, how scientists study it, and find out how to explore it on their own.
  • Take a “Closer Look” at specimens from the park with a high-powered video microscope.
  • Learn about the watershed’s habitats while using the steps in science inquiry.
  • Explore the cultures that have inhabited the park land for over 10,000 years.
  • Get their hands wet in the Living Stream, crawl into a themed beaver lodge, and get a fish’s perspective of the creek at an underwater viewing dome in the bed of the aquarium.