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Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve & Environmental Education Center

Watch a clip about Reinstein Woods and check out other clips on DEC's YouTube Channel.

The Education Center is open Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM, and Saturday from 1:00 to 4:30 PM, except for state holidays. Public restrooms are open during daylight hours and the grounds and trails are open daily from sunrise to sunset.

You can visit our public schedule to see programs we are offering. If you would like to contact us, call 716-683-5959 or email

no pets allowed

Reminder: No pets (including animals on or off leashes, or horses) allowed on the property or trails, except trained service dogs and miniature horses helping their companion.

New York and federal law require service dogs to be allowed in public places, but this does not include emotional support animals. A service dog is trained to do tasks for a person with a disability and the tasks must be directly related to the person's disability. Emotional support animals provide comfort, companionship, and a sense of safety for their owners, but are not trained to perform specific tasks for their owners and are not considered service animals. Under the Americans with Disabilities Act and New York State law, public places are not required to allow emotional support animals. DEC regulations concerning the use of environmental education centers prohibit pets on center grounds except by written permission.

Come Discover Reinstein Woods

Transportation grants are available for most public and charter schools to visit Reinstein Woods. Visit NYS Parks Transportation Grants (leaves DEC website) for more information.

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Lily Pond at Reinstein Woods

Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center is located at the Dr. Victor Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve - a unique 292-acre complex of forests, ponds, and wetlands surrounded by suburban development. Reinstein Woods offers a variety of opportunities to explore and learn about nature for families and people of all ages. In addition to free guided tours of the woods, DEC offers a variety of special programs each month, including snowshoe and ski adventures, walks on seasonal topics, and a fall nature festival. DEC invites you to visit this fascinating area!

Services that we offer include:

  • School, youth and adult group tours and outreach programs
  • Day in the Life of the Buffalo River
  • Teacher workshops and a summer teacher institute
  • Access to programs and facilities for people with disabilities
  • Environmental Education Intern Program - a training internship available to those seeking professional experience in environmental education

To learn more about the environmentally-friendly features of the Environmental Education Center, see the "Green" Environmental Education Center (PDF) brochure.

Featured Activities



The trails are open daily from sunrise to sunset. Visitors are requested to sign in and out at the main trailhead kiosk and obey the posted rules. Interpretive pamphlets corresponding to the Lily Pond Loop, Footprint Trail, and Beech Tree Trail are available at each trailhead kiosk or inside the Environmental Education Center. Interpretive signs are found along the State Symbols Trail and History Trail. Benches are available on most trails. You can find general information on hiking on DEC's website, including how-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.

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Education Programs


Reinstein Woods offers a wide variety of regularly scheduled public programs and events. Upcoming programs can be found at Reinstein Woods Public Programs and Events. Programs are free of charge unless otherwise noted. Dress for the weather! Organized groups (e.g. scouts, schools, hiking groups) wishing to participate in any of these programs must call to schedule a separate program for your group.

Cross-country Skiing and Snowshoeing


DEC partners with Friends of Reinstein Woods to offer snowshoe and cross-country ski rentals for use on Reinstein Woods' trails. For more information on prices and availability, visit Snowshoe and Cross-country ski rentals (leaves DEC website). You can find general information on cross-country skiing and snowshoeing on DEC's website, including how-to and safety tips and links to rules and regulations.

Watchable Wildlife


Many species of wildlife native to Western New York, including white-tailed deer, beaver, waterfowl, red-tailed hawks, pileated woodpeckers and majestic great blue herons live in or visit Reinstein Woods and thrive under its protection. Native wildflowers, ferns fungi also inhabit Reinstein Woods. General information on watchable wildlife, including tips for viewing wildlife and links to other watchable wildlife sites can be found on DEC's website.

Image of the Reinstein Woods facility building
Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve features an
earth-friendly environmental education center

Accessible Features


Reinstein Woods features a wheelchair accessible Education Center and restroom facility. The trail surface from the parking lot to the Education Center is brick pavers. Other trails are flat or gentle grades with crushed stone and mowed grass surfaces.

The Education Center has a scooter available for those with limited mobility to borrow to explore many of the trails. Contact the Education Center for details: (716) 683-5959.

An audio tour of the Lily Pond Loop Trail is available on YouTube.

Reinstein Woods is included in the New York State Inclusive Recreation Resource Center's online database (leaves DEC website). This database provides information about physical accessibility and social inclusion of recreation areas, facilities, parks, and programs from around the state of New York.

General information on accessible recreation, including links to other locations with accessible recreation opportunities and information on permits for motorized access can be found on DEC's website.

Environmental Education Intern Program

The Environmental Education Intern Program is a training internship available to those seeking professional experience in environmental education. Each inter will receive training in the mission and role of the DEC environmental education bureau, a wide variety of center programs, the operations and activities of a center, principles of environmental interpretation, and natural history of New York.


Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center is located in Depew, NY at 93 Honorine Drive, Depew, NY 14043. See Google Maps and enter your address for step by step directions of Reinstein Woods (leaves DEC website).

Rules, Regulations and Outdoor Safety

Practice Leave No Trace Principles (leaves DEC website) when recreating on state land to enjoy the outdoors responsibly; minimize impact on the natural resources and avoid conflicts with other users.

All users of Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center should follow all Outdoor Safety Practices for the safety of the user and protection of the resource.

Drone Use on DEC Managed Lands

Pursuant to 6 NYCRR Part 623, both hobbyist and commercial use of drones is prohibited at DEC's four education centers except for research or training as permitted under an approved temporary revocable permit (TRP). Environmental education centers have their own TRP process. To inquire whether a TRP can be obtained, contact DEC's Bureau of Environmental Education at (518) 402-8043. For more information about DEC drone policies, visit Drone Use on DEC Managed Lands.

Special Regulations

Visitors to DEC's environmental education centers should become familiar with the regulations governing the use of the centers as found in the New York State Register and Official Compilation of Codes, Rules and Regulations of the State of New York (NYCRR). Go to the Use of Environmental Education Centers page (leaves DEC website) to see the regulations concerning the education centers

Please remember that the following are prohibited without express written permission from DEC:

  • Pets and horses, including therapy/comfort animals (trained service dogs and miniature horses are permitted)
  • Feeding wildlife
  • Taking or releasing plants or animals
  • Bikes, skateboards and motorized vehicles on the trails
  • Hunting, trapping and fishing
  • Firearms
  • Boating, canoeing and kayaking
  • Alcoholic beverages and glass containers
  • Camping and campfires

Please stay on designated trails to protect the environment and dispose of trash and recyclables in appropriate containers.

Reinstein Woods is within a 5- mile radius of the Buffalo Niagara International Airport. Therefore, please leave drones at home.

Planning and Management

DEC operates Reinstein Woods in partnership with the non-profit Friends of Reinstein Woods (leaves DEC website). DEC use the Reinstein Woods Unit Management Plan (UMP) (PDF) to guide its management of Reinstein Woods.

There are several appendices to the unit management plan (PDF), as well as figures and maps (PDF).

More about Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve & Environmental Education Center: