Press & Media

Media Inquiries

Brooke Duffy
Senior Director, Development
802.359.5000 x229

Media Sources

About VINS

Founded in 1972, the Vermont Institute of Natural Science (VINS) is a nonprofit environmental education organization based in Quechee, Vermont. VINS' mission is to motivate individuals and communities to care for the environment through education, research and avian wildlife rehabilitation.

The VINS Nature Center serves as the center of VINS' organizational operations, a resource for Vermont and New Hampshire residents, and a destination for tourists to the region. The 47-acre campus features interpretive nature trails, exhibit spaces, an adventure playscape, classrooms and state-of-the-art raptor enclosures.

The Nature Center's self-guided nature trails wind visitors through a floodplain forest and along the Ottauquechee River, noting important natural features along the way, and through an upland meadow with established native wildflower species.

We invite visitors to journey from the forest floor up into the canopy on the VINS Forest Canopy Walk. This incredible experience is included in the cost of admission to the VINS Nature Center. Also explore our Adventure Playscape, a natural place for children with elements for creative play and fun for all ages.

View more Exhibits and Activities at the VINS Nature Center.

The VINS Forest Canopy Walk complements VINS’ mission and enhances its world-class environmental education for visitors. Designed so people of all levels of ability can enjoy it, this new feature offers every generation a new perspective and way to experience the beauty of the landscape.

The landscape of VINS’ 47-acre property is perfectly suited to allow people to gain elevation without the need for stairs or steep ramps. Because the land drops in elevation as it slopes toward the backwater of the Ottauquechee River, we've built a boardwalk that remains relatively level while the land drops away beneath. At the highest points, visitors are an amazing 65 feet above the forest floor getting eye-to-eye with tiny warblers, woodpeckers and squirrels!

View Articles:
Woodstock Magazine Fall 2019

VINS Gives a Tour of the Treetops with New Canopy Boardwalk
Source: Valley News / David Corriveau / September 28, 2019

Nature News: Lush Canopies Found Closer to Home than Amazon Rainforests
Source: / Susan Pike / September 24, 2019

VINS Animal Encounters deliver place-based education programs, combining environmental science concepts with hands-on exploration to build empathy and empower individuals to care for local natural ecosystems.

VINS School Programs enhance the STEM, science inquiry and place-based education in schools across the Upper Valley and beyond through embedded teacher professional development and direct student instruction.

VINS Field Trips are designed to work with and enhance classroom curriculum, making every visit to VINS a valuable experience for students and teachers. All VINS Field Trips are aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards and can be customized to fit seamlessly into your curriculum.

VINS Teacher Professional Development immerses teachers in the best practices in science instruction, focusing on implementing science content and Next Generation Science Standards in the classroom. This is done by using Science and Engineering Practices, Disciplinary Core Ideas, and Crosscutting Concepts.

View Articles:

VINS Center for Wild Bird Rehabilitation is responsible for providing excellent care to injured avian wildlife. We are the largest such provider in Vermont, and our communities have come to expect the best possible care for the patients they entrust to us.

Several foundations and private donors including The Windham Foundation, Red Acre Foundation, Sarah K. DeCoizart TENTH Perpetual Charitable Trust, Horne Family Foundation, and Davis Foundations, have bolstered VINS' goals of providing high-quality emergency and long-term treatment for each avian patient admitted to the Center for Wild Bird Rehabilitation.

Furthermore, our birds are a keystone feature of our popular and important public education programs, which engage, inspire and empower our neighbors in Vermont and New Hampshire, New England and beyond to steward the habitats and wellbeing of avian wildlife.

A Record Year for Bird Rehabilitation at VINS in 2019

View 2018 Wild Bird Rehabilitation Stats

Download 2018 Wild Bird Rehabilitation Data

VINS Center for Education

VINS Research

A Record Year for Bird Rehabilitation at VINS in 2019

Other News


VINS Celebrates 50 Years

Last year we celebrated the many milestones of VINS’ success since its launch in 1972. VINS has become a leading environmental educator and continues to be a refuge for injured wild birds. But one accomplishment we are most proud of is how the community has become intertwined into the mission of VINS. Now more than ever, VINS plays an important role in the community.

Vermont Maturity Cover Story – VINS
Source: Vermont Maturity Magazine / Burlington / July 1, 2023

VINS Receives Prestigious Recognition for Forest Canopy Walk
Source: VINS Press Release / Winter 2022

VINS Celebrates 50 Year Anniversary
Source: VINS Press Release / Spring & Fall 2022

After 50 years, Vermont Institute of Natural Science Still Flying High
Source: Valley News / Francis Mize / Fall 2022

VINS Celebrates 50 Years
Source: Woodstock Magazine / Dean Whitlock / Fall 2022

VINS: 50 Years of Connecting Vermonters with Nature
Source: The Quechee Times / Molly Davis Shimko / Fall 2022

Artwork Files

Logo files (black, white, teal versions) include: print (EPS), broadcast, and web (SVG and PNG).


Artwork Files

Logo files (black and white versions) include: print (EPS), broadcast, and web (SVG and PNG).

Press & Media Photos


Forest Canopy Walk

Key Staff

Charles F. Rattigan




Senior Director
Chris Collier


Director, On-Site Programs
& Exhibits


Director, School Programs & Teacher Professional Development
Grae O’Toole


Director, Center for
Wild Bird Rehabilitation
Sarah Strew


Director, Nature Camp,
Adult Education & Volunteer Administrator


Lead, VINS Experience


Interactive Media