COVID-19 and Visitor Updates

Arboretum Visitor Center

Arboretum Visitor Center

Recent updates.

The Arboretum Visitor Center is open. Visitors, volunteers, and staff are required to wear masks while inside the building. Volunteer receptionists are staffing the reception desk. Restrooms, water bottle filling stations, and information are available. We ask visitors not to gather or linger longer than necessary in the Visitor Center.

The bookstore, browsing library, art gallery, and welcome theater remain closed and there are no displays in the exhibit hall. Building hours are 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays and 12:30 to 4 p.m. weekends. Arboretum gardens, trails, and parking lots are open 4 a.m. to 10 p.m. An accessible portable toilet is available in the Visitor Center parking lot.

This fall we are offering a full schedule of in-person and virtual events. We will continue to monitor the spread of COVID-19 and update public health guidelines and program operations accordingly. See event listings for nature walks, classes, and lectures. Capacity may be limited and registration is required for some events.

We see high road traffic in fall – on foot, bicycle, and by car. Safety and access are both important. We ask all road users to share the road responsibly and respectfully. The speed limit for all vehicles, including bicycles, on Arboretum/McCaffrey Drive is 20 mph. The grounds are open 4 a.m. to 10 p.m. More on road safety and visitor etiquette»

Please note that the following are not allowed: dogs and other pets, tree climbing, drones, picnics, foraging/collecting, sports, hammocks and other weight bearing tree attachments.

Photography permits are being issued and photo sessions are permitted.

Arboretum visitors, staff, volunteers must follow health guidelines while on Arboretum and UW–Madison land and in buildings and vehicles as outlined on the UW–Madison COVID-19 response page. Masks are required inside all campus buildings and vehicles (UW–Madison guidance for fall). We ask that all Arboretum volunteers follow the current vaccination and testing guidelines that have been established for students and staff. We also ask volunteers to follow the University’s quarantine and isolation guidelines for employees and not to volunteer if feeling ill or experiencing COVID-related symptoms.

Vaccination is your best protection. Vaccinated people remain highly protected from the most severe outcomes of the disease and they are far less likely to become infected, however some vaccinated people with COVID-19 may be capable of passing the virus to others. Masks are a simple and effective tool to help limit that risk.

(Updated September 8)