The outside of the Walnut Creek Wetland Center

Walnut Creek Wetland Park


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Park Office Programs Amenities Site Rentals Trails Site History Wetland Center Hours
  • Year 2009 | Acres 58
  • Our mission is to make people aware of the importance of wetlands for clean water, habitat, and recreation while emphasizing the importance of human interaction with nature.
  • Come visit a diverse ecosystem and discover your local wetland!
  • Park bond project at this location

Contact

 

919-996-2760 | email

Address

Walnut Creek Wetland Park
950 Peterson Street
Raleigh, NC 27610

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Park Office

Side view of Walnut Creek Wetland Center

The Norman and Betty Camp Education Center

  • The park office is located in the lobby, which acts as a nature center. It is open to the public, free of charge.
  • The nature center offers many activities free of charge, including interactive displays, explorer backpacks, scavenger hunts, interaction with live animals, books, puzzles, toys, and crafts.
  • Binoculars, boots, aquatic and insect nets, and field guides are available to check out in order to explore the wetland and greenway trails, free of charge.
  • The nature center has a monthly theme that includes artifacts, books, scientific information, games, and crafts to educate on the theme of the month.
  • The entire facility is wheelchair accessible.
  • Enjoy a leisurely view of the wetland on our rocking chairs.
  • Public restrooms, water fountains, and a pet watering bowl are available on the outside deck on the south side of the center.
  • The facility is easily accessible via the Little Rock Creek and Walnut Creek greenways and is just a mile from downtown Raleigh.
  • In addition to the designated parking lot, free parking is available on Peterson and State Streets.
  • Two free electric-vehicle charging ports are available in the parking area.
Walnut Creek Wetlands

Park Rules

  • Pets must be restrained at all times on a 6-foot leash.
  • Hike only on the designated trails.
  • Biking and skateboarding are not allowed on the deck.
  • Smoking is prohibited.
  • The park and trails close at dusk, and all visitors must leave accordingly.
  • Unless it’s litter, leave what you find.
  • Drones are not allowed except by permit. Contact the Special Events office at 919-996-2200.
  • Alcohol is allowed only for special events after acquiring a City of Raleigh Alcohol Permit.
  • Hammocking is not permitted.

Programs

Two kids participating in a nature program

Walnut Creek Wetland Park offers nature programs, drop-in activities, group programs for field trips, birthday parties, special events, and more!

Browse all of our program offerings.

Amenities

Group of program participants on porch bird watching with binoculars

Wildlife Watching

  • A bird-feeding station invites a variety of songbirds and hummingbirds.
  • Raptors including red-shouldered hawks, barred owls, and even the occasional bald eagle are sighted in the woods surrounding the park.
  • Waterfowl including great blue herons, wood ducks, and geese are regularly sighted.
  • Mammal visitors include deer, foxes, groundhogs, beavers, and more.
  • Five-lined skinks and green anoles make their home around the deck, while many other reptiles and amphibians, including tree frogs, turtles, salamanders, and the occasional non-venomous northern water snake are regularly seen.
  • Our Pollinator Hotel plays host to many small invertebrates including wasps and spiders that nest there.
  • In the warmer months, many different species of butterflies, moths, hummingbirds, and other pollinating insects can be seen around our pollinator gardens.
  • A bike-repair station allows cyclists to make minor repairs and pump up their bike tires.
A sign pointing to the Walnut Creek Wetland Park

Rest Stop

  • Easy access from downtown Raleigh, the Walnut Creek Greenway, and Little Rock Greenway.
  • Rocking chairs on the public deck.
  • Restrooms and water fountains.
  • Picnic tables in a shady location for a relaxing lunch or dinner.
The wetland center's exterior which shows lots of windows and wood siding

Green Building Features

  • Designed by Frank Harmon Architects.
  • The building exterior is unpainted wood siding, which requires little maintenance.
  • The orientation of the building and its many windows allow for maximum use of natural light while providing shade from the strong sun.
  • Water is conserved inside through the use of low-flow devices and dual-flush toilets.
  • Outside, swales and rainwater collection ponds slow the flow of water across the surface and through the soil.
  • A cistern collects water from the gutters for watering the garden.
  • Two electronic-car charging stations are available in the parking lot.

Site Rentals

Request your rental online using RecLink or by reaching out to the facility. 

Take note: Requests will be subject to staff approval. Upon approval, payment will be required to confirm the reservation. Your reservation is not finalized until you receive confirmation of your payment.

View Walnut Creek Wetland Park Rentals Frequently Asked Questions

A second large open room with a projector and lots of windows

Neuse River Room

  • 44' by 32'
  • Capacity: 62
  • Full kitchen with a four-burner oven, microwave, and standard refrigerator
  • Pull-down projection screen
  • $80/hr.; $135/hr. with East Deck (two-hour minimum)
  • View room setup options
A large open room with lots of windows and a pull-down projector

Walnut Creek Room

  • 36' by 32'
  • Capacity: 49
  • Two built-in sinks with counter space
  • Laminate flooring
  • Pull-down projector screen
  • Wrap-around windows overlook our bird feeder station
  • $65/hr.; $120/hr. with West Deck (two-hour minimum)

View room setup options.

The outside deck with rocking chairs

The Deck

  • Large decks adjacent to both rooms can be rented to expand the party into the outdoors.
  • Decks can be rented only in conjunction with a room and do not increase the number of people limited by fire code.

Rental Policies

  • Set-up and break-down of tables and chairs are included.
  • All rentals require a non-refundable $15 application fee and a refundable $100 damage deposit; no set-up fees.
  • All rentals must be paid for within 14 days of the rental permit being approved. No partial payments are allowed.
  • Alcohol is allowed with a permit for a fee of $100. All rentals that include an alcohol permit must be booked and paid for at least one month in advance. No partial payments are accepted.
  • There is a $40/hour supervisory fee to rent the facility outside of normal operating hours.
  • 100% transfer of recoverable fees if cancellation occurs at least 14 days in advance.
  • All rentals are for a two-hour minimum.
  • Allow time for set up and clean up in your rental time.
  • No rentals may extend past 11 p.m., which includes the time necessary for clean-up and vacating the room.

Trails

Trails at Walnut Creek Wetland Center
  • Walnut Creek Wetland Park lies at the confluence of Little Rock Creek and Walnut Creek Greenway trails, at about the halfway point on the Walnut Creek Greenway between Lake Johnson and the Neuse River Greenway.
  • Cyclists enjoy using the Walnut Creek Wetland Park as a place to make adjustments or pump up their tires at the bike repair station.
  • The Ross Andrews Trail is a short, mulched trail that allows access directly into Little Rock Creek. Frog pipes and cover boards are fun to explore for tree frogs, invertebrates, and the occasional salamander.
  • Construction of new trails is anticipated to take place by the fall of 2022 as a part of the 2017 Master Plan.

Site History

The exterior of the education center
  • In its early days, the land and wetland area around Walnut Creek Wetland Park was a farming community that later became a premier specimen location for the Brimley Brothers, who co-founded the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences in the late 19th century.
  • In the mid-1990s, efforts by a community organization that became known as Partners for Environmental Justice led to a 2003 bond initiative that resulted in a new nature center for southeast Raleigh called Walnut Creek Wetland Park.
  • A second bond initiative in 2014 funded another phase of development for the park and included much of the remaining acreage. Construction of new trails is anticipated to take place by the fall of 2022.
  • In 2019, the park facility was named the Norman and Betty Camp Education Center, in honor of the contributions of Norman and Betty Camp to Partners for Environmental Justice and the fruition of the park.

Wetland Center Hours

 
Monday:
Closed
Tuesday:
10:00 am - dusk
Wednesday:
10:00 am - dusk
Thursday:
10:00 am - dusk
Friday:
10:00 am - dusk
Saturday:
10:00 am - dusk
Sunday:
1:00 pm - dusk

Upcoming Events