150 Bay Parkway, Wantagh (at Jones Beach State Park, West End 2), Wantagh NY 11793
(516) 809 - 8222
The Jones Beach Energy and Nature Center is located at the very West End of Jones Beach State Park, West End 2. The large, paved lot has 11 accessible (van) spaces very close to the ramp leading to the push button assist, double door entrance.
There is ample space to navigate throughout. Tile floors and benches make it easy for anyone to visit.
The large wooden deck facing the ocean has benches as well as several lounges.
There is an accessible, single-occupancy, family restroom, as well as multi-stall restrooms with large, accessible stall and accessible sinks. There are baby-changing stations.
- Attraction Type: museum, park
Surface of lot: paved
Distance to venue: very close
Transportation to venue offered: na
Places to rest: benches throughout
Paths and walkways: concrete walkways, wooden deck
Doors: push-button assist door
Number of floors: one
Ramps: ramp to front entrance and ramp from rear deck to 1/2 mile concrete walk
Steps and staircases: 8 steps to main entrance, 8 steps out back
Width of aisles: ample space everywhere
Places to sit: benches throughout
Location of restrooms: family restroom off of lobby, other restrooms are located in the galleries
Type of restroom: multi-stall, with large, accessible stall and sinks; a large, accessible, family restroom
Ease of entry and exit: multi-stall restroom door a bit heavy
Baby changing station: yes
Available food services: no food
Friendliness of staff: pleasant and informative
A bright, but cold, January day brought us to the Jones Beach Energy and Nature Center, a place I just happened to hear about several days ago. After visiting, I can say I am sorry that more people don’t seem to know anything about this interesting, informative, inspirational venue. There is something for everyone to learn about nature and energy and power in an amazing setting.
“ Located on the West End of Jones Beach State Park, the Center activates and interprets the coastal landscape in which it is situated. Exhibits, educational programs and events explore how energy is transferred in nature and transformed into power for human use and how energy consumption shapes the natural environment.” (website)
The paved parking lot has 11 accessible (van) spaces very close to the building. A wooden ramp or eight steps bring you to the push-button assist, single door entry.
Once inside, we were in the lobby of a facility which “explores the interplay between human actions energy use an environmental conservation.” (website) The Center consists of the lobby, East, West and North Galleries, each one a large, sunlit, high ceilinged area. Each space is connected to the others by a sunlit hallway and benches. The two young men at the lobby desk were friendly and informative.
We were pleased to see that there are two free audio tours available, along with a touch-tank, microscopes, a wave machine, several live specimens, and other things for kids to interact with. There is lots of information to help everyone understand “The Power of Nature” and “The Nature of Energy.” They explore how energy is transferred in nature and transformed into power for human use, and how energy consumption shapes the natural environment. There are free walk-in tours of the building and exhibits, as well as seal-walks and other indoor and outdoor programs. Admission to the building is free. There is a nominal charge for the various programs (check website for up-to-date information). We found several families with young children enjoying this gallery.
Besides the building, there is an outdoor, paved walkway (about 1/3 mile around) which teaches about local animals and flowers. Right now, there is not much there, except for the outdoor musical instruments which kids can try out.
The Center is fully accessible. From the ramp to the entrance, to the ample space in each gallery, to the benches throughout, to the large deck facing the Atlantic, and the restrooms, one of which is multi-stall with a large, accessible stall, accessible sinks, and baby-changing station, to a large, accessible, family restroom (also with a baby-changing station), to the braille signage, everyone can have an enjoyable and educational experience.
We will definitely be back!
As always, we at Destination Accessible, advise you to visit a venue’s website, www.jonesbeachenc.ccom, when planning a visit to “know before you go,”