Ray Harral Nature Center Celebrates 10 Years

B.A. Express photo FAMILY FUN: Youngsters and their parents enjoy looking at the animals in the Ray Harrel Nature Center, which includes a 40-acre park ground and more.

The Ray Harral Nature Center celebrated its 10th anniversary with a community party on Saturday, July 6.
The event was held at the Nature Center, 7101 S. 3rd St. behind Spring Creek Elementary, and included cake and refreshments for visitors, as well as outdoor activities.
While the park itself is much older, the 3,300-square-foot Nature Center itself opened in 2009. Inside the center features a bearded dragon lizard, a 10-year old tarantula, multiple tree frogs, and a large turtle exhibit with two live box turtles. Visitors can also learn about honeybees and other Oklahoma animals through hands-on exhibits. A party room is also available to rent for meetings, parties and other occasions. The 40-acre park grounds feature two picnic shelters and three miles of walking or jogging trails.
The park was named for Ray Harral, the assistant city manager at the time of his death in 1984. Harral had a reputation of being committed to leisure activities and parks facilities. He helped design and develop the Indian Springs Sports Complex. Harral was also a retired Highway Patrol officer. The Nature Park was under development when he died, so the City Council at the time chose to name it after him.