Dinosaur Hill marked it’s beginnings over 40 years ago when local residents recognized the potential of a forgotten piece of “unusable” land tucked in the corner of a developing subdivision. Through the joint efforts of these individuals, visionaries in the City government and educators at Rochester Community Schools the land was purchased by the City to be used for education and recreation.
Over time, as the interest and need grew, more and more formal programs and school field trips were held on the preserve. It soon became apparent that there would be a need to be improve the facilities. Through countless small fundraisers and much support from the local community, funds were raised over the years to build a bridge across the creek to connect the two “halves” of the preserve, build a small nature center, relocate an historic “little log cabin” and, most recently to build a small office and work area.
There are several individuals who remain actively involved with Dinosaur Hill today who were, some 35 years ago some of the original pioneers of the idea of a community nature center. The organization evolved with the dual purpose of providing community educational enrichment and field trips for school groups. We remain closely tied to both the City of Rochester (which appoints a liaison to our Board of Directors) as well as to Rochester Community Schools (which drives our field trip curriculum).