The Hausmann Nature Center, an architectural masterpiece, was the original 8700 square foot home of Bernice and Dr. Paul Hausmann. In 1985, the Hausmanns donated their home and 35 acres of nearby land to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, as it was their wish that the home and land would be used for further conservation purposes and to provide a nature center for environmental education. In addition, they sold 374 acres of their glacier-sculpted property to the WI DNR.
Dr. Paul, a well-known thoracic surgeon and his wife Bernice, an individual with a love for nature, were land stewards and conservationists who dedicated endless hours to restoring and transforming the agricultural land into woods and grasslands. They planted thousands of trees and native species of plants. They even won the Tree Farm of the Year award in 1972. Along with forestry, the Hausmanns restored native prairies and preserved wetland habitat by excavating two ponds on the property.
With its location near the top of Lapham Peak and abundant windows, people can take in spectacular panoramic views of the surrounding area. Check out the displays that illustrate native plants and animals, the geologic history of Lapham Peak and several Native American artifacts found on the property.
Now open as a Nature Center two weekends per month from April through the end of October, the center also has rentable space for weddings, private gatherings, events and meetings upon request. The rental fees help us to expand our educational programs, maintain the building and to continue the Hausmann’s noble mission to protect and preserve this beautiful, awe-inspiring landscape for future generations.
The Friends of Lapham Peak are looking for friendly volunteers to help staff the Nature Center. If interested, please call the forest office at 262-646-3025.
Click below for a list of upcoming educational programs offered at the Hausmann Nature Center.