SOUTH HOLLAND, Ill. (CBS) — Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle was among those cutting the ribbon Saturday morning on a newly-renovated nature center in the south suburbs.

The Sand Ridge Nature Center welcomed guests Saturday morning in South Holland.

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Inside the nature center building, the turtles came out to greet folks in their tanks. There are also some rather fascinating snakes.

The nature center offers a lot to learn abut the Calumet region’s natural and cultural history, with hands-on activities. Outside the building, flowers and native plans fill colorful gardens, and you can enjoy hiking, biking, and birdwatching on nearby trails.

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There are new trails now at the Camp Shabonna Woods campsite, and accessible fishing outcroppings at Green Lake.

“Sand Ridge Campus is a natural theme park. There is something for everybody here,” Cook County Forest Preserve District General Superintendent Arnold Randall was quoted from the ribbon-cutting ceremony.

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The $1.6 million renovation of the Sand Ridge Nature Center was funded largely by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources’ Open Space Lands Acquisition and Development program.

CBS 2 Chicago Staff