Established in 1937, the Trailside Nature Museum is one of the oldest museums of its kind in the United States. It is home to a large collection of mounted animals, American Indian artifacts, educational exhibits, child-friendly interactive displays, and nature-oriented artwork.

It is situated on the 4,400-acre Ward Pound Ridge Reservation and is located at the junction of Route 35 and 121 South in Cross River.

The museum hosts thousands of school children and scouts each year for a variety of educational programs including stream study, American Indian culture, maple sugaring, and badge work. Family-oriented nature programs are scheduled for the general public on nearly every weekend.

The Trailside Nature Museum is also the home of the Delaware Indian Research Center, a vast collection of books and artifacts concerning American Indians, especially the Delaware. The Research Center is well utilized by both students and educators and has assisted several authors in researching their publications. The Research Center is open to the public by appointment.

Be sure to go butterflying in the meadow, which attracts parades of butterflies. The brochure Butterflies of Ward Pound Ridge Reservation lists 83 species that have been seen on the grounds.

Birds of field and forest abound throughout the year. Birds of Ward Pound Ridge Reservation contains a checklist of the 184 species recorded in the park to date.

In addition, there is a one-half acre wildflower garden containing more than 80 different kinds of labeled wildflowers. There are several self-guided nature trails – directions and pamphlets are available in the museum.

Friends of Trailside Nature Museum and Ward Pound Ridge invite you to join its efforts to support ongoing and special museum programs.

Celebrate your birthday with us
Outdoor birthday parties are available for three to 13-year-olds, Saturdays and Sundays between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m.

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Wheelchair accessibleParkingRest roomsDrinking waterPets must be leashed. Waste bags provided for clean up.Nature studysouvenirshop moPlease recycle

  • Admission and fees: County park pass is not required for admission. A parking fee is charged at the park entrance. There is no additional admission price to the museum.
  • Directions: Ward Pound Ridge Reservation, Routes 35 and 121, Cross River
  • Museum hours: Open Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.; closed occasional Fridays. Trails are open every day dawn to dusk.
  • Restrooms: Stand-alone building near Trailside Museum available daily during regular park hours.
  • Phone: (914) 864-7322
  • County parks map & guide
  • Birthday parties: Email to arrange:
  • Dogs must be leashed. Service animals welcome.