Experience South Mountain in a whole new way, every time you visit! Our programs span all ages and so many interests, you’re sure to gain enjoyment and new insights on this special mountain in a special desert.

Program Types

Adults and Older Youth – In addition to visiting our exhibit space and Dottie Gilbert Reading Room, there are great opportunities for learning through our programs, activities and classes, such as Explore the Night Sky, Field Sketching, Birding, SM 101, and our Learning Lecture series.

Kids and Family – These programs offer fun and learning for all ages through a wide range of experiences, including stories, games, classes, adventure packs, and nighttime adventures!

Schools and Groups –Your school or group from small to large can come to South Mountain for special learning enrichment! Schedule time with our education staff for a field trip or our learning ‘nuggets’ programs, or grab an adventure pack for self-guided observations, investigations and fun!

See the great programs available through ACNC at the Phoenix Zoo

City of Phoenix Programming

In addition to classes and activities offered through Arizona Center for Nature Conservation, South Mountain Environmental Education Center proudly hosts programs offered through the City of Phoenix Parks and Recreation Department. Check out their site for times and descriptions.


View Programs & Activities Through City of Phoenix

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
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Desert Play Space 9:00 am
Desert Play Space
Dec 1 @ 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Release your imagination in our Nature Play Space. Items designed to stimulate movement, creativity and self-directed learning are available amidst…
‘Welcome to the Desert’ Walks 10:00 am
‘Welcome to the Desert’ Walks
Dec 1 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Every Saturday | 10 a.m. – Noon, offered every half-hour Winter Break | 1/2, 1/3, 1/4 These brief walks for…
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Desert Play Space 9:00 am
Desert Play Space
Dec 2 @ 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Release your imagination in our Nature Play Space. Items designed to stimulate movement, creativity and self-directed learning are available amidst…
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South Mountain Petroglyphs: Art of Observation 6:30 pm
South Mountain Petroglyphs: Art of Observation
Dec 6 @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Join Peter Krocek, co-author of the definitive guide to petrogylphs at South Mountain, for an interactive lecture and photographs from…
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Desert Play Space 9:00 am
Desert Play Space
Dec 8 @ 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Release your imagination in our Nature Play Space. Items designed to stimulate movement, creativity and self-directed learning are available amidst…
Make & Take Fair 9:00 am
Make & Take Fair
Dec 8 @ 9:00 am – 1:00 pm
Drop into South Mountain Environmental Education Center for a few fun, nature-based “make & take” activities and crafts. No registration…
South Mountain Jr. Explorers 9:00 am
South Mountain Jr. Explorers
Dec 8 @ 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Outdoor adventures, hands-on science, crafts and desert stories await youth ages 3 – 12, allowing adults to explore the 60+…
Discovery Hikes 9:30 am
Discovery Hikes
Dec 8 @ 9:30 am – 11:30 am
9:30 – 11:30 a.m. Join us for hikes led by our expert Park Rangers, each focused on a different topic…
Storytime at South Mountain 9:30 am
Storytime at South Mountain
Dec 8 @ 9:30 am – 11:30 am
9:30 and 11 a.m. Saturdays: 11/10, 11/24, 12/8, 12/29 Sundays: 11/11, 11/25, 12/9, 12/30 Winter Break: 1/2, 1/3, 1/4 Join…
‘Welcome to the Desert’ Walks 10:00 am
‘Welcome to the Desert’ Walks
Dec 8 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Every Saturday | 10 a.m. – Noon, offered every half-hour Winter Break | 1/2, 1/3, 1/4 These brief walks for…
Nature at Night Walks 6:45 pm
Nature at Night Walks
Dec 8 @ 6:45 pm – 7:45 pm
Experience and explore the desert at night, guided by your senses and a Park Ranger! Track down scorpions and lichen…
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Desert Play Space 9:00 am
Desert Play Space
Dec 9 @ 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Release your imagination in our Nature Play Space. Items designed to stimulate movement, creativity and self-directed learning are available amidst…
Make & Take Fair 9:00 am
Make & Take Fair
Dec 9 @ 9:00 am – 1:00 pm
Drop into South Mountain Environmental Education Center for a few fun, nature-based “make & take” activities and crafts. No registration…
Storytime at South Mountain 9:30 am
Storytime at South Mountain
Dec 9 @ 9:30 am – 11:30 am
9:30 and 11 a.m. Saturdays: 11/10, 11/24, 12/8, 12/29 Sundays: 11/11, 11/25, 12/9, 12/30 Winter Break: 1/2, 1/3, 1/4 Join…
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Bugs are Everywhere! 6:30 pm
Bugs are Everywhere!
Dec 13 @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Wednesday, 12/13 | 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. Did you know Arizona has more native pollinators than any other state?  Or…
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Desert Play Space 9:00 am
Desert Play Space
Dec 15 @ 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Release your imagination in our Nature Play Space. Items designed to stimulate movement, creativity and self-directed learning are available amidst…
‘Welcome to the Desert’ Walks 10:00 am
‘Welcome to the Desert’ Walks
Dec 15 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Every Saturday | 10 a.m. – Noon, offered every half-hour Winter Break | 1/2, 1/3, 1/4 These brief walks for…
Fireside Chats 6:30 pm
Fireside Chats
Dec 15 @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Join our Park Rangers for fun and learning about South Mountain around the campfire. Our beautiful landscape and desert sunsets are…
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Desert Play Space 9:00 am
Desert Play Space
Dec 16 @ 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Release your imagination in our Nature Play Space. Items designed to stimulate movement, creativity and self-directed learning are available amidst…
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Phoenix Zoo Wild Science Academy at SMEEC 1:00 pm
Phoenix Zoo Wild Science Academy at SMEEC
Dec 19 @ 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Wild Science Academy lets you explore the world of science with South Mountain Park as your classroom! These affordable and…
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Desert Play Space 9:00 am
Desert Play Space
Dec 22 @ 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Release your imagination in our Nature Play Space. Items designed to stimulate movement, creativity and self-directed learning are available amidst…
‘Welcome to the Desert’ Walks 10:00 am
‘Welcome to the Desert’ Walks
Dec 22 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Every Saturday | 10 a.m. – Noon, offered every half-hour Winter Break | 1/2, 1/3, 1/4 These brief walks for…
South Mountain Aglow 5:30 pm
South Mountain Aglow
Dec 22 @ 5:30 pm – 9:00 pm
We light up the darkest night of the year, the Winter Solstice, with a beautiful half-mile, luminaria walk along our…
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Silent Sunday 5:00 am
Silent Sunday
Dec 23 @ 5:00 am – 7:00 pm
Cyclists, skate boarders, wheelchair users and stroller-riding tots can now call the roads of South Mountain Park their own one…
Desert Play Space 9:00 am
Desert Play Space
Dec 23 @ 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Release your imagination in our Nature Play Space. Items designed to stimulate movement, creativity and self-directed learning are available amidst…
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Explore the Night Sky 6:30 pm
Explore the Night Sky
Dec 27 @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Learn about the universe through an interactive educational session, focusing each month on new astronomical topics while younger learners are…
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Desert Play Space 9:00 am
Desert Play Space
Dec 29 @ 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Release your imagination in our Nature Play Space. Items designed to stimulate movement, creativity and self-directed learning are available amidst…
Make & Take Fair 9:00 am
Make & Take Fair
Dec 29 @ 9:00 am – 1:00 pm
Drop into South Mountain Environmental Education Center for a few fun, nature-based “make & take” activities and crafts. No registration…
South Mountain Jr. Explorers 9:00 am
South Mountain Jr. Explorers
Dec 29 @ 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Outdoor adventures, hands-on science, crafts and desert stories await youth ages 3 – 12, allowing adults to explore the 60+…
Discovery Hikes 9:30 am
Discovery Hikes
Dec 29 @ 9:30 am – 11:30 am
9:30 – 11:30 a.m. Join us for hikes led by our expert Park Rangers, each focused on a different topic…
Storytime at South Mountain 9:30 am
Storytime at South Mountain
Dec 29 @ 9:30 am – 11:30 am
9:30 and 11 a.m. Saturdays: 11/10, 11/24, 12/8, 12/29 Sundays: 11/11, 11/25, 12/9, 12/30 Winter Break: 1/2, 1/3, 1/4 Join…
‘Welcome to the Desert’ Walks 10:00 am
‘Welcome to the Desert’ Walks
Dec 29 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Every Saturday | 10 a.m. – Noon, offered every half-hour Winter Break | 1/2, 1/3, 1/4 These brief walks for…
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Desert Play Space 9:00 am
Desert Play Space
Dec 30 @ 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Release your imagination in our Nature Play Space. Items designed to stimulate movement, creativity and self-directed learning are available amidst…
Make & Take Fair 9:00 am
Make & Take Fair
Dec 30 @ 9:00 am – 1:00 pm
Drop into South Mountain Environmental Education Center for a few fun, nature-based “make & take” activities and crafts. No registration…
Storytime at South Mountain 9:30 am
Storytime at South Mountain
Dec 30 @ 9:30 am – 11:30 am
9:30 and 11 a.m. Saturdays: 11/10, 11/24, 12/8, 12/29 Sundays: 11/11, 11/25, 12/9, 12/30 Winter Break: 1/2, 1/3, 1/4 Join…
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