The Brightside: Barn Hill Preserve
DELAWARE – All summer long, the Barn Hill Preserve of Delaware has been bringing smiles to people all across Delmarva through their Summer Community Outreach program.
Joshua Mueller, the Co-Owner of Barn Hill Preserve said, “During the summer, we take anywhere from two to three animals with us. We set up at different businesses.”
They take animals like a kangaroo joey, tortoise, or a two-toed sloth with them.
Mueller said, “Animals just have a special touch with people and they are really able to bring the best of us out.”
Krystyn Houck, a woman attending one of Barn Hill Preserve’s events added, “Who doesn’t love cute sloths?”
Barn Hill Preserve’s overall goal is education.
Mueller said, “We want to teach conservation and just get everyone engaged in the environment so that way they help protect it.”
Sponsorships made through their Summer Outreach Program help keep their education and conservation efforts going.
Mueller said, “While we’re there, guests are able to come up and ask questions and see the animals if they’re interested in interacting with any of them. It’s just a ten dollar sponsorship you get to hold them pet them take pictures with them.”
The Barn Hill Preserve of Delaware mainly visits businesses in the Ocean City, Fenwick Island and Rehoboth Beach areas, but they’re always willing to do private events.
Mueller said, “We do birthday parties, we do corporate events. Anyone that’s interested in having an interaction with animals, we try not to say no to them.”
But the Barn Hill Preserve has an outreach beyond just Delmarva. All throughout the school year, the organization teams up with their Louisiana location to travel to schools all across the country in an effort to teach kids about the importance of conservation.
Mueller said, “We reach about a million kids every year both facilities combined.”
Overall, the Barn Hill Preserve prides itself on brightening the day of everyone they meet.
Mueller said, “You can see a kid having a bad day just turn into a big smile.”
They hope to expand their outreach with a new facility in the future.
Mueller said, “Our big goal in Delaware right now is to open up a facility for the public.”
For a schedule of where Barn Hill Preserve will be going next, you can head to their Facebook page.
If you would like to schedule a private event, you can visit their website.