Focus on Friends - Brillion Nature Center Association*

Brillion Wildlife Area is 4,800 acre property consisting of bottomland hardwoods, prairie, marsh, wetlands, some upland hardwoods and agricultural fields. It is located in Calumet County and surrounded by the communities of Brillion, Hilbert and Potter.
In 1982, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources approached the Brillion Board of Education in order to lease the Behnke farm for the purpose of developing a nature trail and an outdoor laboratory which would be used for educational purpose. After studying the project proposal and developing trail plans, the first phase of the project was completed in 1985 by the Wisconsin Conservation Corp(WCC).  The second phase was completed in 1987, with the construction of more trails. a boardwalk, parking lot, educational displays in the remodeled  barn, constructing a maple syrup shack, and XC ski trail.
The Brillion Nature Center mission is to provide environmental education opportunities and outdoor experiences for area schools and the general public. The center is open to the public Monday – Friday from 8:30AM – 3:30pm. The center is also open on Saturdays when an event is planned. The center has quite a few events throughout the year. Among them are:

  • Pre-school and youth organizations
  • Public programs
  • Senior Citizen programs
  • Special events
  • Birthday parties
The association also plans several successful fundraisers. The 18th Annual Brillion Nature Spring banquet was held in early spring.  The event raised almost $36,000.
Another fun event is the March maple syrup camp. Participants tap maple trees, learn about making maple syrup and sample syrup on ice cream.
Memberships are always welcome ( Volunteers are always welcome. Naturalist interns are always needed.  Naturalist Interns work a minimum of 20 hours/week for 10 weeks under the supervision of the Director/Naturalist.  Experience will include teaching, field work, buildings and grounds maintenance and writing for the BNC newsletter. (See this link for further information: (

*Sources:  Web Site:
Wisconsin DNR Web Site: