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Utah Travel Headlines

Friday, October 25, 2013

Urban Students Invade Zion National Park

Concrete To Canyons: Kids Experience Zion National Park For The First Time
The phrase above serves as the title of this interesting article, published on nationalparks.org. The article describes a program that brings inner-city kids to national parks to participate in educational and educational activities. It is a great program that deserves publicity and support.


In this case, kids from Las Vegas had the chance to visit Zion National Park. It was the first time in the park for everyone in the group – actually the first time in any national park for many participants. Below are excerpts from the article.
Through a progressive series of activities, the “Concrete to Canyons” project introduced participants to camping, wilderness hiking, outdoor education, and stewardship of natural resources...


To kick-off the program, NPS rangers conducted curriculum-based classroom activities covering wilderness and stewardship concepts, followed by an outdoor event at a local park in Las Vegas to teach camping skills including hiking safety, campsite construction, food planning and preparation, and “Leave No Trace” concepts. Next, a learning day was conducted at Lake Mead NRA where students experienced and reflected on the meaning of wilderness in their lives and the impact of humans on wild lands. The culminating event was a three-day camping experience in Zion NP that made quite an impression.


...Everything about this experience was new for the youth – squirrels, hurricane beetles, mountains, camping, hiking, drinking lots of water all day long, bighorn sheep, learning in an outdoor setting, seeing the planet Venus, swimming and hiking in a river, and eating s’mores!


One student remarked, “I want to be a park ranger when I grow up ‘cause they are fun and happy and get to discover stuff they never knew - like more about plants and animals.” Through three days of interactive exploration and learning, these students experienced a once-in-a-lifetime adventure amongst the beauty and wild of our national parks.
We encourage you to support this program, and other efforts to bring kids into our parks.

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