The Roper Mountain Science Center in Greenville, SC was created from a unique partnership between volunteers, public ownership, private support, and corporate sponsorship. Public programs at the center include a public day on the second Saturday each month, the Starry Nights program on Fridays, and Summer Adventures, which are offered to the public during the summer months. Hundreds of students visit the center each day throughout the school year to participate in Learning Labs.
The David E. Cromwell and Edward H. Stall Arboretum at the Roper Mountain Science Center is beautiful throughout the year, however, it is particularly stunning during the spring when the Carolina jessamine and azaleas are in bloom. The arboretum, created in 1987, showcases landscape specimens and, situated adjacent to the Living History Farm's entrance, the natural setting offers a scenic background for displays of annuals, perennials, vines, shrubs, and understory trees. Dogwood trees with vibrant purples and reds, stunning red burning bush, and other plants in bright oranges and yellows appear in the fall. The arboretum is open to the public during daylight hours when the main gate of the center is open.
Adjacent to the Harrison Hall of Natural Science and Technology and near the pond, the Butterfly Garden at Roper Mountain Science Center is a joint venture of the center between the Greater Greenville Master Gardeners and the Roper Mountain Science Center Association. The garden features several different plant varieties that attract bees and butterflies and is beautiful all year round. In 2002 the Butterfly Garden was certified as a National Wildlife Federation Schoolyard Habitat, meaning that wildlife is provided with water, food, shelter, and place to raise young. The garden is open to visitors, while the main gate is open during daylight hours.
Roper Mountain Science Center's T.C. Hooper Planetarium opened in 1989. This world-class planetarium features 4K projection, dynamic 5.1 surround sound, state-of-the-art lighting, a 360-degree full immersion dome, new shows, interactive exhibits in the lobby, and more. Programs at the planetarium include educational, inspiring, and entertaining classes in the fields of history, anatomy, life science, earth science, and astronomy for both the public and students. The planetarium is open to the public every second Saturday and during its Friday Starry Nights program. This program includes a live talk about the Carolina Skies, a feature show, and more. The Charles E. Daniel Observatory is also open to the public on Friday nights and features a historic refractor telescope.
The Roper Mountain Science Center also contains a nature trail that stretches over a mile. Winding its way along the mountain side's pine and hardwood forests, the nature trail travels beside a pond filled with insects and aquatic life as well as through the butterfly garden. There are signs along the trail informing visitors about the native animals and plants that can be found in that particular type of setting, while markers identify the trees and plants along the trail. Visitors can take a break or have lunch at one of the many picnic areas located along the trail. The center's nature trail is open during daylight hours all year round as long as the main gate is open.
Back to: Things to Do in Greenville, SC
402 Roper Mountain Road, Greenville, South Carolina 29615, Phone: 864-355-8900