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Field Trip Policies

Preparation for School & Summer Group Visits 

  • Notify us in advance of any special needs or considerations for your group.
  • Separate 
    • Pre-school & Kindergarten students into groups of 25 max (or one class) prior to arrival.
    • 1st-12th grade students into groups of 30 max (or one class) prior to arrival.
  • Programs require one teacher per class and one adult chaperone per five students. Additional parents may not attend without prior permission from the Education Director.
  • Advance notice of additional students and adults is required. TNC reserves the right to limit the number of non-registered participants on the trail to the number originally registered on the confirmation form.
  • Programs are held drizzle or shine. If outdoor conditions are unsuitable or dangerous, a suitable undercover program relating to the scheduled topic or any topic can be substituted.
  • Program Attire:
    • Programs vary seasonally and are mostly outdoors; please encourage your students to dress for the weather. 
    • All students should wear sturdy, closed-toed shoes or boots and rain gear when applicable (no umbrellas please).
    • Due to elevation and forest cover, TNC tends to be cooler throughout the year.
    • Please apply insect repellent at home before you arrive at the Nature Center. We suggest that you apply to clothing rather than skin. We ask that you don’t spray insect repellent in our parking lot!

    Arrival and Departure

    • Visit our Contact & Directions page to find us.
    • Field Trip groups can expect to be greeted as they arrive in the parking lot by a TNC Environmental Educator. If you arrive early please check in with the front desk to learn where to meet your educator.
    • If space is available you will be asked to park in the nature center parking lot and load and unload. It is unsafe to unload or park in the cul-de-sac without TNC staff.
    • If the parking lot is full, participants will be asked to park on Hudson Avenue and walk into the center (parking is not permitted in the cul-de-sac).
    • If you arrive early you are welcome to walk on the trails before your scheduled program.
    • Programs begin and end at the time listed on the confirmation sheet. Program time will not be altered due to lateness. Please contact us if delayed while en route.
    • Schedule transportation accordingly, and allow time for bathroom breaks, loading and unloading.

      Guided Programs

      • Lessons begin and end at the time listed on the confirmation sheet. Program time will not be altered due to lateness. Please contact us if delayed while en route.
      • For all scheduled programs one Environmental Educator will be assigned to lead each group (max, 25-30 students depending on age). 
      • Please make sure all cell phones are set to vibrate. 
      • Attending teachers and chaperones are required to stay and be a part of the group program. They will be asked to assist when necessary to provide an enjoyable experience for all involved.
      • Child discipline is the responsibility of attendant adults, not the staff of TNC.

      Groups are Expected to: 

      1. Notify us in advance regarding any special needs or considerations for your group.
      2. Arrive on time and if delayed please contact us.
      3. Arrive with no additional participants or adults than scheduled for.
      4. Behave and group leaders are responsible for maintaining discipline.
      5. Treat our equipment respectfully.
      6. Cancel with a minimum of 48 hours notice if you need to do so.

      Picnic Area at TNC

      • TNC has several picnic areas available. If you would like to make use of one of these, please let us know ahead of time and we will add that at no extra charge.
      • TNC does not supply any food or refrigeration.
      • Please no drink boxes (clear straw wrappers can be harmful to our wildlife).
      • Tenafly Nature Center practices the principles of Leave No Trace. For more information on these principles, please visit the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics page. 
      • Lunch/snack trash removal is your responsibility. Please bring a trash bag for your garbage and take it with you when you leave.
      • TNC has the space for recyclables, and encourages the recycling of glass, metals, and plastics numbered 1-7.
      • For the health of our wildlife, please do not place any food, plates, cups, etc. in the trash cans outside.

      • If the weather is inclement the reserved snack/lunch time may be moved indoors and children will be able to sit and eat picnic style in the museum room. Tables and chairs may be set up for groups with fewer than 24 participants.

      Program and Payment Policies

        • A non-refundable program deposit of $50 is required for each date you are scheduled for, and must be received within one month after receiving confirmation of the program date.
        • Programs scheduled with less than two weeks notice will require a non-refundable deposit of $50 three days prior to the program.
        • Additional parents may not attend without prior permission from the Education Director.
        • Payment can be made by your group representative via check, cash, purchase order, or money order (credit cards may be accepted by letting the Education Director know of your payment choice ahead of time).
        • It is the duty of the group representative to collect and pay the entire fee (TNC will not accept individual payments from the participants).

        Accessibility at TNC

        Many of the programs Tenafly Nature Center offers can be altered to accommodate participants with special needs. We ask that you disclose pertinent information with a minimum of two weeks notice about any participants that have any special needs (particular educational requirements resulting from learning difficulties, physical disability, or emotional and behavioral difficulties). This information enables us to make the necessary accommodations needed to meet the needs of your group.

        Reschedule, Cancellation & Refund Information

        • Field Trip programs are taught mostly outdoors and are held drizzle or shine. However, in the event of heavy rain or dangerous temperatures, an alternate undercover program may be substituted.
        • If you must reschedule or cancel, a $50 processing fee will be applied. Cancel with a minimum of 48 hours notice if you need to do so.
        • If your Field Trip or TNC to Go must be cancelled, refunds are based on how far in advance cancellation is from the scheduled date.
        • Cancellation Timeline Refund Amount
          1. More than 30 days’ notice - 100% returned
          2. 11 to 30 days’ notice - 50% returned
          3. Less than 11 days’ notice - NO REFUND
        • We reserve the right to terminate your event for non-compliance with these regulations and prohibit plans that may interfere with operations, cause harm to animals, or other reasons at the discretion of the Executive Director.
        • A minimum charge of $50 will be added and an invoice generated on the group’s Tenafly Nature Center account in the event of damage to a room or its contents or if garbage is left behind. Tenafly Nature Center will notify the group contact by phone if an invoice is created.
        • We reserve the right to cancel a scheduled activity if actual group size and age levels differ substantially from the reservation without notification. The above cancellation/ refund policy applies.
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