The Ak-Sar-Ben Aquarium at Schramm Park State Recreation Area is closed for renovations. Construction is scheduled for completion in 2018-19.
The remainder of the state recreation area, including trails, canyon ponds, picnic areas, playground and fossil exhibit, will remain open. A temporary office will be established at the park, within the current visitor center parking lot, to accommodate guests who wish to obtain park information or purchase permits.
The renovation will transform the facility into a state-of-art interactive exploration center. The finished facility will include larger aquariums, a redesigned lobby area, a multi-faceted interactive nature center that will include various hands on activities, and a modern classroom to facilitate expanded educational programs and meetings.
Visitors refer to Schramm Park State Recreation Area as a hidden gem nestled among the rolling hills of the Platte River valley. The historic site of the state’s first fish hatchery boasts well-maintained wooded trails that are popular with runners, bikers and casual hikers alike. The park is a noted destination for bird-watching, particularly during spring migrations. Families can explore a geologic display, feed fish in cool water trout ponds, tour the Aksarben Aquarium and enjoy a picnic on the bluffs. The grounds also offer an access point to the Platte River water trail. The park is accessible year round from sunrise to sunset and is located midway between Lincoln and Omaha. Camping facilities are available at nearby Louisville SRA, Mahoney State Park or Platte River State Park.
The trail system offers a 1.5 mile loop that is ideal for families and casual hikers. This route offers interpretive signage highlighting the flora and fauna of the park. Hikers can also choose a larger loop that offers nearly 3 miles of trail through wooded bluffs. A highlight on the longer route is a suspension bridge. Runners enjoy the off-road challenge of the trails, and a local trail running group coordinates annual races onsite. Mountain bikers appreciate the trails as a gentle introduction to the sport. In winter, with adequate snowfall, trails can be traversed on cross-country skis.
Relics from the state’s first fish hatchery remain on the park grounds and are accessible to visitors. A hatch house constructed in 1914 now houses quaint dioramas about fishery management. Rainbow trout reside in cool spring water that flows into canyon ponds, and a boardwalk provides access to feed the fish. Picnic tables are located amongst the hatchery ponds, and resident geese and ducks entertain visitors as they eat.
Geology enthusiasts will enjoy the display, located at the east entrance to the park, that highlights limestone and shale from the Pennsylvanian Period. Visitors may also see Paleozoic marine fossils like brachiopods or corals.
The popular Ak-Sar-Ben Aquarium has closed and will be completely remodeled and expanded into an interactive state-of-the-art nature center featuring the state’s river, pond and lake systems.
A modern playground and picnic shelters are located on the bluffs and are accessible from the hiking trails and by paved road. Restrooms are located at near the base of the drive.
Canoers, kayakers and rafters can access the Platte River at Schramm Park SRA at a pull-off from Highway 30. A short trail leads to the river.
The new Interactive Exploration Center will include a modern classroom to facilitate expanded educational programs and meetings.
Schools and other groups may arrange for an aquarium tour or a presentation from a staff naturalist.
For more information, call (402) 332-3901.
- Mahoney State Park: Eugene T. Mahoney State Park offers a family aquatic center, rock wall, Go Ape ropes course, indoor playground, theater, alpine slide, pony rides and more, as well as an ice skating rink in the winter months. Both RV and primitive camping are available as well.
- Platte River State Park: With its beautiful view, miles of tranquil trails and rustic cabins, Platte River State Park is a great complement to the more modern Mahoney State Park, and many visitors take advantage of both.
- Louisville State Recreation Area: Louisville State Recreation Area is home to a brand new floating playground! It also offers excellent opportunities for RV camping, as well as five sandpit lakes that are popular with anglers.
- SAC Museum: Strategic Air Command Museum showcases an impressive array of aircraft that helped SAC preserve the peace during the Cold War, as well as other exhibits relating to air and space craft.
- Wildlife Safari Park: Wildlife Safari Park is a four mile, drive-through North American wildlife adventure that brings visitors face-to-face with North American plants and animals such as elk, white-tailed deer, bison and waterfowl.
- Quarry Oaks Golf Course: Quarry Oaks Championship Golf Course near the park offers a fabulous golfing experience set on the rolling wooded hills overlooking the Platte River. Contact Quarry Oaks to arrange your tee times up to 30 days in advance.
Address: Schramm Park SRA | 15810 Hwy 50 | Louisville, NE 68037
Phone: (402) 332-3901
Email: Send email