The Villages’ W. Clement Stone Nature Center is a private, non-profit nature preserve located west of Topeka on 372 acres of native grassland and forest. The Stone Nature Center provides environmental education and adventure challenge programs to youth and adults from school, scout, military, corporate and other groups each year.
The Villages homes for children were always meant to be surrounded by nature. A generous gift from W. Clement Stone of Chicago provided funds to purchase an adjacent dairy operation and pay for 'start up' yearly funding for the nature center which has been named in his honor. While initially a component of the therapeutic environment of The Villages program for youth in need of homes, the Stone Nature Center now serves not only Villages youth but other youth and adults every year. In addition to nature education programs utilizing the preserve along the Kansas River and a program animal collection of native wildlife, the nature center is also the site of one of the largest adventure challenge programs in the state.
The Villages - Stone Nature Center Green Team is a volunteer group of youth living at The Villages who work alongside Stone Nature Center staff to protect nature and the environment.