Dept. of Tourism: Navarino Nature Center joins ranks of Travel Green Wisconsin

Danielle Johnson, Wisconsin Department of Tourism

Tim Ewing, Navarino Nature Center


Management and staff embrace programs earning their company its green certification.

MADISON, Wis. (Nov. 29, 2012) The Navarino Nature Center reduced the volume of its center’s environmental footprint by two-thirds through renewable energy usage (solar and geothermal), and waste recycling programs supported by both employees and visitors. Accordingly, the Department of Tourism has awarded Navarino Nature Center its Travel Green Wisconsin (TGW) certification designation and welcomes them into a membership of over 350 active members who embrace a green philosophy for Wisconsin through our future-thinking Travel Green Wisconsin initiative.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Navarino Nature Center to the ranks of those using green practices in their businesses and look forward to seeing the Travel Green Wisconsin logo they earned displayed as part of their green identity,” said Tourism Secretary Stephanie Klett. “We applaud Navarino Nature Center’s commitment to protecting our states beauty and natural resources. Simple acts add up and insure that another generation will be able to enjoy the bounty of this incredible state as we do now.”

The Navarino Nature Center’s efforts are reinforced through the use of renewable energy systems and compostable materials instead of plastics, composting food waste and the proper identification and disposal of hazardous waste materials. Green practices are further supported through a project that included structural changes such as insulated concrete form walls, sun tunnels for passive lighting in deep areas of the building, an energy recovery ventilation system, solar electric generation, and geothermal heating and cooling. Methods are also used to divert rain/snowmelt water into the wetland areas.

Navarino Nature Center’s mission statement is: To educate people of all ages on the importance of conserving natural resources and wildlife habitat, promoting renewable energy, and developing a healthy lifestyle by engaging in wellness opportunities.

“The green building and renewable energy addition at Navarino Nature Center is about education, we wanted to provide the public and area schools with a facility that is a teaching tool in itself, “ said Tim Ewing, Director and Naturalist. “We visited many wonderful facilities all over Wisconsin, then used the information that we found to create the green building addition. Over 3,000 area students and adult groups visit the facility to learn, understand and get a hands-on feel for the renewable energy systems and green building displays. After viewing the displays and exhibits inside the nature center, visitors can engage in recreational activities and enjoy the natural beauty of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources – Navarino Wildlife Area.”

Travel Green Wisconsin’s program is the first of its kind in the nation and serves as a stewardship model by promoting sound environmental practices in the tourism industry. Unique for its inclusiveness, all tourism-enterprises who share a commitment to protecting Wisconsin’s environmental legacy are invited to participate. Applicants are subject to rigorous yet obtainable standards before earning TGW certification status. To learn more about TGW and its benefits, call Shelly Allness, Program Manager and Liaison, at 608-261-8767 or email her at

The mission of the Wisconsin Department of Tourism is to market the state as the Midwest’s premier travel destination for fun. By executing industry-leading marketing programs, providing reliable travel information and establishing strategic partnerships, we will play a significant role in delivering exceptional customer service and generating greater economic impact and jobs for Wisconsin. The portal for traveler information can be found at:

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