Summit Metro Parks We're Your Back Yard

Summit Lake Nature Center

Building Hours:

SLNC renderingWednesday-Saturday: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Sunday: 12 to 5 p.m.
Closed Mondays & Tuesdays


Summit Lake Nature Center is located at 411 Ira Ave., Akron 44301. The nature center is closed most Mondays and Tuesdays, but may be open select holidays. Visit our Alerts page.

After the successful pilot of a pop-up nature center inside the Reach Opportunity Center at Summit Lake, Summit Metro Parks has established a permanent nature center inside the former Pump House building!

SLNC renderingThe nature center includes:

  • New ways to connect with nature within a healthy and thriving urban lake ecosystem
  • Exhibits highlighting the people and natural resources of the Summit Lake community
  • Programming focused on wildlife education, urban gardening and water-based recreation
  • Easy access to the Towpath Trail, local bus service and Summit Lake

The pop-up version of the Summit Lake Nature Center was made possible through support from Reimagining the Civic Commons, a nationwide grant program working to create transformative public spaces that connect people of all backgrounds, cultivate trust and create resilient communities. The project was named 2017's best environmental and interpretive program by the Ohio Parks & Recreation Association. Read more about this honor.

Project partners include: City of Akron, Knight FoundationLet's Grow Akron, Ohio & Erie Canalway Coalition, Ohio Department of Natural Resources and Summit Lake Build Corps.

Summit Lake Nature Center was made possible with support from Knight Foundation, Summit County Land Bank Community Development Matching Grant, Bridgestone Trust Fund, Sisler McFawn Foundation, Dupont Clear into the Future, Akron Community Foundation - Civic Affairs (Betty R. Axline Fund, Board of Directors Annual Giving Fund), Jacqueline Ross Foundation and Summit Metro Parks Foundation. Thank you as well to the City of Akron, Akron Metropolitan Housing Authority and the Summit County Land Bank for donating the building and surrounding property, and to Great Lakes Construction for providing deconstruction services at no cost.