Description - The original land for the center was purchased by the Department of Forests and Waters from the City of Easton in 1959. In 1969, additional land was purchased making this northern edge of the Lehigh Valley an ideal setting for the Jacobsburg Environmental Education Center. Situated at the foothills of the Pocono Plateau, a variety of habitats can be found ranging from fields to mature hardwood forests. Jacobsburg's natural resources not only provide an excellent outdoor laboratory for environmental education and interpretation, it is also important to many visitors from the surrounding area for healthy outdoor exercise and recreation. A network of 18.5 miles of trails are used by hikers, all-terrain bicyclists, horseback riders and cross-country skiers. An amphitheater by Belfast Road provides a site for environmental education programs while a picnic area accommodates school groups and the general public.
Copyright: Pennsylvania Bureau of State Parks
Jacobsburg Environmental Education Center
- The original land for the center was purchased by the Department of Forests and Waters from the City of Easton in 1959. In 1969, additional land was purchased using funds from Project 70. This brought the total land area of the center to its present size of 1,168 acres.
Situated on the northern edge of the Lehigh Valley, the rolling terrain of Jacobsburg Environmental Education Center is near the foothills of the Pocono Plateau. A variety of habitats can be found ranging from fields in various stages of successional growth to mature hardwood forests dominated by oak trees. Approximately 2.5 miles of the beautiful Bushkill Creek and its tributary Sobers Run comprise the waterways of the center.
Jacobsburg's natural resources not only provide an excellent outdoor laboratory for environmental education and interpretation, it is also important to many visitors from the surrounding area for healthy outdoor exercise and recreation. The natural open spaces provided by this public resource are becoming increasingly important in a continually expanding urban setting.
Recreation - A network of 18.5 miles of trails makes the center's fields, woodlands and streams accessible to both students and the casual visitor. These facilities are for use by hikers, all-terrain bicyclists, horseback riders and cross-country skiers.
The center's amphitheater by Belfast Road provides a site for both environmental education programs and a variety of community programs.
A small picnic area along Belfast Road is available for use by school groups and the general public. Fishing in the nearby Bushkill Creek is popular especially since the creek is regularly stocked.
Jacobsburg was dedicated as an environmental education center in October 1985, and is one of four environmental education centers operated by the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Bureau of State Parks. Through its environmental education programming at centers and state parks, the Department aims to help develop a citizenry that is aware of and concerned about the environment and its problems, and also has the knowledge, attitude, motivation, commitment and skills to work individually and collectively toward solutions of current problems and the prevention of new ones.
The Jacobsburg environmental education program consists of a variety of quality programs including: student field learning experiences, Youth Environmental Learning Series, Environmental Forums for high school students, Conservation Leadership Schools, Water Quality Monitoring Program, school site and curriculum development and numerous in-service and pre-service teacher workshops focusing on problem-solving for a variety of environmental issues, natural history and watershed education. The center's program staff also offers community programs and supports ecological research, in addition to assisting in developing regional and statewide programs that serve educators and other Bureau and Department program and staff needs.
Educators and school groups wishing to participate in a learning experience at Jacobsburg should contact the center office for program scheduling and reservation information.
Approximately 937 acres of Jacobsburg Environmental Education Center are open to hunting, trapping and the training of dogs during established seasons. Common game species are deer, pheasant, rabbit and squirrel. Hunting woodchucks, also known as groundhogs, is prohibited. Dog training is only permitted from the day following Labor Day to March 31 in designated hunting areas. The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the Pennsylvania Game Commission rules and regulations apply.
Climate - Pennsylvania generally has a moist climate with cold winters and warm summers. The Jacobsburg area has cold winter months with temperatures averaging around 24 to 28 degrees Fahrenheit (-4 to -2 degrees Celsius). The area's average summer temperatures range around 72 to 74 degrees Fahrenheit (22 to 23 Celsius).
Located at the foot of the Blue Mountain in Northampton County, Jacobsburg Environmental Education Center is accessible from PA Route 33 at the Belfast Exit, near Nazareth, PA.