Harford County's Doorway to the Chesapeake Bay

Family-friendly experiences to help you learn about and bond with nature.

Canoeing, Kayaking, Hiking, NATURE EDUCATION, Summer Camp,
Animal Encounters, Research and More!

Who are we?

Otter Point Creek Alliance is the “friends of” volunteer group that helps make good things happen at the Estuary Center. We support the staff to make the programs, grounds, exhibits and trails fun, educational, accessible, and safe.

What is an Estuary?
Follow us & share your experiences with the community

Explore the Estuary


Plan your Visit

Hike or paddle the trails, visit exhibits, and meet the animals.


Attend a Program

Learn about our family-friendly events, programs and activities.


Volunteer with us

Become active and help us protect our natural resources.

What is the ACLEC?

Located on the shores of Otter Point Creek, the Anita C. Leight Estuary Center is open to the public seven days a week, except for Sundays in the winter and on holidays.  Join us for one of our many public education programs or events,
including sunset canoe trips, marsh kayak trips, and many other hands-on family science and nature programs.

Get wet and muddy volunteering with our research and monitoring efforts like fish seining, Zooplankton monitoring, or marsh plant surveys.  Stroll through the visitor center’s hands-on exhibits to learn about Chesapeake Bay ecology and other fascinating facts about the local flora and fauna.  Explore the Discovery Room, home to a 300-gallon freshwater turtle pond and other amazing critters, or just meander the two miles of hiking trails through dappled upland forests of black gum and maple trees.

Our Partners

Chesapeake Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve System in Maryland

Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve empowers and inspires stewards of Maryland’s natural places by studying, teaching, and connecting people to estuaries.

Izaak Walton League of America – Harford County Chapter

The League takes a common-sense approach toward protecting our country's natural heritage and improving outdoor recreation opportunities for all Americans.

Harford County

Harford County Government has a primary mission to serve the needs and protect the interests of its residents.