The Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center (ELC). was opened in 2004 and includes a research wing with office
space for research staff and both wet and dry laboratory facilities. The center section of the building is
dedicated to visitor services with a welcome desk, small gift shop, two-story interpretive exhibit area and a
series of aquarium tanks where a variety of estuarine creatures could be on display. The other wing of this
building was is an education and training wing to serve visitors as well as the education programs associated
with school groups and coastal training. This wing has a large hallway that would be used for art exhibits, a
140-person capacity auditorium, two classrooms, and additional office space for education staff.
The ELC is open year-round and serves as a visitor center for the public to enhance understanding of estuarine
systems through interpretive exhibits, aquaria and naturalist-led programs. In addition, the ELC serves as a
gathering place for college and professional training programs and courses as well as for research lectures, etc.
RBNERR hosts annual community events at the ELC including Dive into Oceans, Estuary Day, and the Southwest
Florida Nature Festival. A pedestrian bridge and boardwalk system, completed in 2010, provides visitor access to
important representative examples of key RBNERR habitats and cultural resources.
Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center
300 Tower Road
Naples, FL 34113
Calendar of Events
Aquaria and exhibits teach visitors about
habitats and wildlife within the estuary.