Privacy Policy

As an affiliate institution of the University of North Carolina system, The North Carolina Arboretum (“the Arboretum”) is committed to best practices in keeping your personally identifiable information secure. The Arboretum uses information it collects only for program purposes and will not sell your email address, personal information, or your words. The Arboretum will not quote your words without your permission except within the site itself for promotional purposes or other campaigns.

This privacy policy describes how the website handles Personally Identifying Information (as defined below) that users provide to the Arboretum or that the Arboretum collects from users through the use of its ecoEXPLORE website. The site is located at

Website Visitors

The website collects non-personally-identifying information that web browsers and servers typically make available, such as the browser type, language preference, referring site, and the date and time of each visitor request. ecoEXPLORE’s purpose in collecting non-personally-identifying information is to better understand how visitors use the website. From time to time, the Arboretum may release non-personally-identifying information in the aggregate to Arboretum staff, stakeholders and grantors.

Personally-Identifying Information

"Personally-Identifying Information" means information such as first/middle initial or name, last name, e-mail address, street address, mailing address if different, town or city, state, zip code, telephone number, date of birth, credit card information, Internet Protocol (IP) addresses and any other information that would allow someone to identify or contact a user. does not use such information to identify its visitors and users.

The website may collect Personally-Identifying Information when a user chooses to interact with in ways that require to gather such information. An example would be when an individual registers as an ecoEXPLORE user or provides content to ecoEXPLORE staff through a personal computer or other device. 

The amount and type of information that gathers depends on the nature of the interaction. In each case, collects information only as necessary or appropriate to fulfill the purpose of a user’s interaction with We do not disclose Personally-Identifying Information other than as described below. 

A website user can always refuse to supply Personally-Identifying Information, with the caveat that doing so may prevent the user from engaging in certain website resources. discloses potentially Personally-Identifying Information, or information that may potentially be Personally-Identifying Information, only to those of its programmers, contractors and affiliated organizations that:

  • need to know that information in order to process it on behalf of or to provide services available at the website, and 
  • have agreed not to disclose it to others. 

By using the website, users consent to the transfer of such information to these third-party partners of the ecoEXPLORE program.

The Arboretum or its website will not rent or sell potentially Personally-Identifying or Personally-Identifying Information to anyone.

Other than to its employees, contractors, and affiliated organizations, as described above, discloses potentially Personally-Identifying and Personally-Identifying information only when required to do so by law, or when believes in good faith that disclosure is reasonably necessary to protect the property or rights of the Arboretum,, third parties related to the Arboretum or the public at large. Unless authorized by users through user opt-in, or as provided above, we will make your Personally-Identifying Information available to non-affiliated third parties only in the following circumstances:

  • If the Arboretum is compelled to do so by a governmental agency, court or other entity (e.g., to respond to subpoenas, court orders or legal process);
  • If the Arboretum believes user actions violate a law, regulation, this Privacy Policy or any applicable website terms of use, or if a user threatens the rights, property or safety of the North Carolina Arboretum, Arboretum-affiliated websites, any other users or third parties;
  • If, in their sole discretion, Arboretum management believe disclosure is necessary to investigate or resolve possible problems or inquiries, to protect Arboretum assets, to defend Arboretum interests or comply with the Arboretum’s legal and regulatory obligations.

For registered users of who have supplied their email address, Arboretum may occasionally send emails describing new features or program offerings, solicit user feedback or keep users up-to-date with what’s going on with and its events.


The Arboretum/ does not knowingly collect or solicit personal information from children through our website. Visitors 12 years of age and younger must have a parent and/or legal guardian register for this website on the child’s behalf.

The parent and/or legal guardian must then opt-in to the program by clicking on an activation link in a confirmation email sent to their email address before submitting any personal information to this website. We will not require any participants to disclose more information that in reasonably necessary to participate in

Parents and/or legal guardians who register for this website on a child’s behalf may review their child’s personal information after logging in and navigating to the Edit Profile page, which is located at Users may contact Arboretum staff at if they wish to direct Arboretum staff to delete an account or refuse to allow any further collection or use of a child’s information.

If Arboretum staff learn that they, or others officially associated with the Arboretum, have received any personal information from a visitor 12 years of age or younger, and Arboretum staff do not receive parental permission within a reasonable period of time after the Arboretum’s request for it, Arboretum staff will delete that information as quickly as possible. If an ecoEXPLORE program participant believes that the Arboretum might have information from or about a child 12 years of age or younger, please contact program staff at


A cookie is a string of information that a website stores on a visitor’s computer, and that the visitor’s browser provides to the Arboretum website each time the visitor returns. uses cookies to help identify and track visitors, their usage of the website and their website access preferences. visitors who do not wish to have cookies placed on their computers should set their browsers to refuse cookies before using websites, with the drawback that certain features of websites may not function properly without the aid of cookies.

Privacy Policy Changes

In the Arboretum’s sole discretion, the ecoEXPLORE program may change its Privacy Policy from time to time. We will post an updated and revised version of this Privacy Policy on the website when any material changes have been made. The Arboretum encourages visitors to check this Privacy Policy often so users are aware of the most current terms and conditions that apply to them. Continued use of the website following Privacy Policy changes will constitute a user’s acceptance of such changes.


The North Carolina Arboretum has partnered with Western Carolina University to research the ecoEXPLORE program. The research will involve the survey responses and all information will be kept confidential. Participation is entirely voluntary and one's decision to partake will not impact the ecoEXPLORE experience.

Social Media

The ecoEXPLORE program may share Challenge submissions or Observations with the general public via social media outlets (i.e., Instagram, Facebook, and Mailchimp). We will blur any identifiable information disclosed in these files and, if denoted in the description, we will not share the username associated with the Challenge activity or Observation.

All Users

If any user of the website has any questions about this Privacy Policy, please contact the Arboretum’s ecoEXPLORE program at or:

ecoEXPLORE Program

The North Carolina Arboretum

100 Frederick Law Olmsted Way

Asheville, N.C. 28806-9315

This Privacy Policy was last modified on September 1, 2021.