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Review for North American Bear Center, Ely, MN, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

I am from the UK and have always been interest in wildlife. About 5 years ago myself and my wife went to Canada and went on a trip with someone who has been studying Black Bears for over 20 years. When we got back to the UK we came across a BBC TV documentary about Dr Lynn Rogers who has been studying them for more than 40 years.

We both wanted to come to Minnesota to see for ourselves the Bear Center so we came over in 2014. We were so impressed by what the Center does in educating us all on the lives of these wonderful animals that we have comeback to Minnesota another 2 times in 2016 and also in August 2018. We have therefore seen the positive transformation of the Center over these 4 years and the additional educational features than have been added. The people who work at the Center are so committed to the project and they give such a positive perspective on the Bears. There are 4 captive bears (Ted, Lucky, Holly and Tasha) at the NABC. It is obvious that they are so well cared for and have lots of space (2.5 acres I believe) to roam around in and do what Bears do.

They operate on a small budget and most staff are volunteers who do an amazing job and are very knowledgeable. There are staff members around the Center to offer assistance with information should you be interested in learning. The building is massive and there are so many educational displays both on televisions screens, a movie theatre and beautifully presented information boards that you could easily spend a couple of days reading and watching everything there is to see. Both children and adults enjoy seeing the bears from the huge glass windows or go upstairs on to the outside deck. It is amazing to see such a heavy animal climb so quickly and easily. You get the chance to go out back on a behind the scene tour and see the bears close up too. Again children and adults have plenty to see to keep them all interested and entertained. The admission price is very reasonable and I would expect it to be at least double what it is. It is well worth the price. There is also an extensive gift shop with loads of variety. I highly recommend visiting The North American Bear Centre.

In summary the Bear Center is so lucky to have Dr Lynn Rogers spend his entire life learning about these beautiful animals and to give us this informative centre. I know we will keep coming back.

Role:  General Member of the Public