The McDuffie Environmental Education Center (MEEC) is one of seven regional education centers operated by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. The MEEC is a collaboration between the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, the McDuffie County Board of Education, the Watson Brown Foundation, and the Central Savannah River Area - Regional Educational Services Agency (CSRA RESA). This project provides teachers a unique site to take students for hands-on outdoor experience. Lessons address the dimensions of the Georgia Standards of Excellence in this diverse biologically rich area with activities available for PreK through seventh grade. The McDuffie Environmental Education Center provides students with stimulating, outdoor learning experiences about the ecology of our wildlife, water, soils, and forests and the stewardship of these important natural resources.
The MEEC offers three diverse habitats, two trails, a hands-on self-directed discovery room, indoor classrooms and several outdoor classroom areas.
The mission of the McDuffie Environmental Education Center is to provide instructional programming which fosters ongoing understanding, appreciation, and conservation of Georgia's natural resources.
McDuffie Environmental Education Center offers grade specific programs correlated to the Georgia Standards of Excellence.
- First Grade
- Second Grade
- Third Grade
- Fourth Grade
- Fifth Grade
- Sixth Grade
- Seventh Grade
The MEEC staff strives to provide ongoing support for environmental education in the classroom through mutual sharing of information and strategies. Programs are continually reviewed and modified to meet the needs of individual groups. Teachers may contact us about teacher training, customizing the student experience, or conducting an outreach program. We now offer outreach to schools even if they have not visited before. Outreach programming is $65/program within 25 miles of the MEEC; $75/ program within 25-50 miles; 50+ miles a $40 mileage fee will be added to the $75/program cost.
The McDuffie Environmental Education Center is open by reservation year round. While spring and fall months lend themselves more to outdoor activities, the MEEC is available for field trips throughout the year. MEEC is open to summer programming including scouts and private summer camps. Three indoor classrooms are available for use in colder or wet weather. It is recommended that dates be booked well in advance in order to secure desired dates. Space is limited to 75 students per trip. To schedule a visit please fill out and return the reservations form and view the calendar below for available dates.
Fee: $5 per student
For more information or to make a reservation, contact:
Use this calendar to see what program dates are available at the McDuffie Environmental Education Center.
Accommodations & Facilities
The McDuffie Environmental Education Center is located at 4695 Fish Hatchery Road in Dearing, GA. This Wildlife Resources Division site, known locally as the "State Ponds", is the location of the McDuffie Public Fishing Area and the McDuffie Warmwater Fish Hatchery as well as the McDuffie Environmental Education Center. Following is a listing of other opportunities available at the McDuffie Complex.
- McDuffie Archery Range, Public Fishing Area, & Hatchery
- Boat Ramps
- Campground — 7 tent, trailer & RV site-specific campsites
- Canoe Access
- Discovery Room (hands-on, self-directed)
- Fishing Dock
- 2 Indoor Classrooms
- Nature Trails (2 trails)
- Outdoor Classrooms
- Picnic Shelters
- Picnic Sites
- Geocaching — not allowed during managed hunts
- Lake Fishing
Kids Fishing Events
The Public Fishing Area holds kids' fishing events during the fall, summer, and spring seasons to encourage youngsters under the age of 16 to participate in the sport of fishing. Two ponds stocked with channel catfish are reserved for this event. Youngsters may catch and keep up to five fish. Search for Kids Fishing Events.