Park welcomes fourth-graders

Shenandoah National Park invites all fourth-grade students to visit the park for free as part of the White House’s new “Every Kid in a Park” program. As of Sept. 1, fourth-grade students can visit to complete an activity and obtain a free year-long entry pass to more than 2,000 federal recreation areas, including national parks.

“In celebration of the National Park Service Centennial, the National Park Service is offering a special invitation to fourth-graders and their families by making free passes available, allowing them to explore our national public lands throughout the school year,” said Deputy Superintendent Jennifer Flynn. “We hope many fourth-graders will take this opportunity to explore Shenandoah National Park and take advantage of the many opportunities to hike, camp, and learn.”

Shenandoah National Park offers a variety of activities that families can enjoy, including two self-guided TRACK Trails hikes, a birds of prey program, and a junior ranger program.

To receive their free pass for national parks, fourth-graders can visit the Every Kid in a Park website and play a game to access their pass. Students and their families can then use this pass for free entry to national parks and other federal public lands and waters across the country through Aug. 31, 2016. The website also includes fun and engaging learning activities aligned to educational standards, trip planning tools, safety and packing tips and other important and helpful information for educators and parents.

In addition to providing every fourth-grader in America a free entry pass for national parks and federal public lands and waters, fourth-grade educators, youth group leaders and their students across the country can also participate in the program through field trips and other learning experiences. Shenandoah National Park will be reaching out to local schools to make students and teachers aware of the opportunity.

The goal of the Every Kid in a Park program is to connect fourth-graders with the great outdoors and inspire them to become future environmental stewards, ready to preserve and protect national parks and other public lands for years to come. The program is part of the National Park Service’s centennial celebration in 2016, which encourages everyone to Find Your Park.

Every Kid in a Park is a nationwide initiative launched by President Obama and supported by eight federal agencies, including the National Park Service, the Army Corps of Engineers, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, Department of Education, Fish and Wildlife Service, Forest Service, and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

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