CEDAR RAPIDS – The Indian Creek Nature Center not only has one of its major events this weekend with the Maple Syrup Festival, but also made a major announcement: the naming of its forthcoming amphitheater.
United Fire Group, The McIntyre Foundation and Dee Ann McIntyre chose to honor Director Emeritus Rich Patterson’s retirement by naming the planned outdoor feature “The Patterson Family Amphitheater.”
The new amphitheater will be part of the campus the Nature Center will build a half-mile away from its current site in southeast Cedar Rapids.
Here is more from the Indian Creek Nature Center about the donation:
On the occasion of Director Emeritus Rich Patterson’s retirement from Indian Creek Nature Center, United Fire Group, The McIntyre Foundation, and Dee Ann McIntyre have chosen to honor him by naming a planned new outdoor feature “The Patterson Family Amphitheater.”
With a combined gift of $400,000 the donor group chose to recognize Rich for his longstanding service to Indian Creek Nature Center. “As the Nature Center embarks on its exciting future, it is fitting that part of the new project bears Rich’s family’s name. He has built the Nature Center and preserved countless natural resources—something our company strongly believes in,” stated United Fire Group President & CEO Randy Ramlo.
The outdoor, living amphitheater is part of the Amazing Space project being implemented by Indian Creek Nature Center. The amphitheater will reside on a natural hillside at the new campus. Features include natural stone and grass seating, a fireplace, and stage area. Tree canopy cover will shade the area and provide a natural setting.
Rich, his wife Marion and their two children, Dan and Nancy, moved to Cedar Rapids from Kansas in 1978 where he served as director of the Dillon Nature Center for 4 years. Rich was the director of Indian Creek Nature Center for almost 36 years–all but 4 years of the organization’s history. He formally retired February 28, 2014.
Located in Cedar Rapids, the Indian Creek Nature Center is Iowa’s first and only privately owned and operated non-profit nature center. With 290 acres of land under its management, the Center hosts a myriad of visitors each year for nature-based activities.
The mission of the Indian Creek Nature Center is to promote a sustainable future by nurturing individuals through environmental education, providing leadership in land protection and restoration, and encouraging responsible interaction with nature. It is governed by a volunteer board of directors which sets policy.