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Third aviary, children’s playground among new attractions coming to the Shell Factory

By Staff | Nov 11, 2014

The Shell Factory & Nature Park continues to expand, and soon will be adding two attractions with an animal motif.

Work is expected to begin soon on the Nature Park’s third aviary and on a new children’s playground at the dog park, with the goal of keeping the historic attraction one of the area’s top destinations.

The park has broken ground on a new aviary which will allow visitors a close look at unique birds and reptiles. This will complement the two aviaries already in The Nature Park. Construction will begin in the next two weeks, with the aviary expected to be completed by mid-December.

Rick Tupper, CFO and marketing director for the Shell Factory, said it will be a great place for “kids of all ages” to get up close with nature’s creatures.

“Our park is half petting zoo and half animal sanctuary. We’re getting all sorts of reptiles donated to us from people who can’t care for them anymore,” Tupper said. “We’d like to keep taking in the birds, rehab them and give them a home.”

Last week’s Nature Park Foundation dinner and auction will help raise funding for the project. For the year, the Nature Park is up 25 percent in attendance from last year, Tupper said.

Secondly, the Doggy Heaven dog park will be expanded to include a new children’s playground. While your dog has fun with other canines inside the park, children and their parents can have some two-legged fun.

Tupper said the playground should be in place within a month.

“Instead of the children sitting by the car, they’ll have a place to go. We hope to get the equipment soon and expand the area with additional fencing and put in the equipment so everyone can play,” Tupper said.

The playground should be finished by the beginning of the new year.

“As the No. 1 family entertainment destination Southwest Florida we continue to seek opportunities for families to spend quality time together while also offering an educational experience. We feel The Shell Factory and Nature Park is a value added attraction where families can spend the entire day,” Tupper said.