9th Annual Kids to Parks Day

NPT Partners With NPS, Cities, Towns, And States Around The Country To Promote National Day Of Outdoor Play And Park Appreciation; 1,400+ Park Events Planned; 1.1 Million + To Participate

See original posting on PRNewswire

WASHINGTONMay 9, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — In celebration of Kids to Parks Day, held annually the third Saturday in May, millions of Americans will join National Park Trust (NPT) and its many partners on May 18th to honor America’s parks and public lands by attending over 1,400 free park events in all 50 states and Washington, DC.

The United States Senate passed a resolution of support declaring May 18, 2019 Kids to Parks Day.

“National Park Trust hopes families across America will commemorate Kids to Parks Day by planning a fun family outing, attending a park event, or joining a collective celebration in what has become a national day of outdoor play and park appreciation,” said Grace Lee, executive director of NPT.

Mayors from more than 430 cities and towns –including Montgomery (AL), Tucson (AZ), Sacramento (CA), Denver (CO), Washington (DC), Honolulu (HI), Detroit (MI), Kansas City (MO), Las Vegas (NV), Newark (NJ), Albuquerque (NM), and Austin (TX) have signed resolutions of support.

Visit www.kidstoparks.org for a complete list of park events by state and downloadable tips and activity guides to help children, families, and teachers plan park adventures. Those who pledge to participate and share their adventures with the hashtag #KidstoParks on May 18th will also have a chance to win a camping package from The North Face as well as other outdoor gear gifts from partners including National Geographic Kids, Eastern National and Parks Project.

Kids to Parks Day is the signature event of NPT’s popular Buddy Bison® School Program which teaches environmental education. Through its woolly mascot Buddy Bison, NPT encourages children to “Explore outdoors, the parks are yours!” 77 elementary and middle Title I schools, in 17 states and Washington, DC participate in the Buddy Bison School Program, which provides classroom resources and fully funded park trips that enhance and expand school curricula.

National Park Trust (NPT) is a non-profit dedicated to preserving parks today and creating park stewards for tomorrow. NPT is the only land trust with a comprehensive mission of protecting national parks through land acquisition and creating a pipeline of future park stewards by getting kids to parks. Since 1983, NPT has completed 70 land projects in 31 states, the US Virgin Islands, and Washington, DC. This school year, NPT will provide an estimated 25,000 under-served kids with park trips through their nationally recognized Buddy Bison Programs and Kids to Parks Day National School Contest, both of which support Title I schools.

Find out more at www.parktrust.org.


Senate Passes Bipartisan “Kids to Parks Day” Resolution

For Immediate Release: May 8, 2019

Contact: Nicole L’Esperance (Wyden) 202-224-3789

Kevin Smith (Portman) 202-224-3353

Christina Mandreucci (Alexander) 202-224-4944

Aaron Morales (Heinrich) 202-228-1578

Will Dempster (Hirono) 202-224-9813

Kristin Lynch (Booker) 202-224-8378

Senate Passes Bipartisan “Kids to Parks Day” Resolution

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Ron Wyden, D-Ore., Rob Portman, R-Ohio, Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., Martin Heinrich, D-N.M., Mazie K. Hirono, D-Hawaii, and Cory Booker, D-N.J., applauded the passage of their bipartisan resolution, which encourages children to get outdoors by designating May 18, 2019 National Kids to Parks Day.

First celebrated by the National Park Trust in 2011, the ninth annual Kids to Parks Day marks the beginning of a summer-long series of events at state parks countrywide that promote outdoor recreation and active, healthy living. The Senate passed the resolution by unanimous consent yesterday.

“Love for outdoor recreation is in Oregon’s DNA,” Wyden said. “Oregonians pass on that appreciation of our natural resources and enjoyment of the outdoors from generation to generation. Kids to Parks Day is another important way to connect our young folks to the richness of the outdoors and enjoy all that Oregon and states across the country have to offer.”

“It is important that we encourage younger generations to enjoy and experience the outdoors, and as a frequent visitor to our national parks I’m pleased that thousands of kids in Ohio will be visiting and learning about these national treasures on Kids to Parks Day,” Portman said. “I am proud to support the Kids to Parks Day Resolution to encourage more young people and their families to visit our treasured national parks.”

“In the age of technology, our national parks are more important now than ever before. Growing up in Maryville, Tennessee, which is next to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, I was able to take advantage of our country’s natural beauty and learn history in a place where history comes alive. It is my hope that children across the country take the time to celebrate Kids to Parks Day on May 18 and create memories of their own,” Alexander said.

“Our national parks offer endless opportunities for kids to discover, learn, and play,” said Heinrich whose bipartisan legislation, the Every Kid Outdoors Act, was signed into law earlier this year. “Connecting kids to the outdoors, whether it is playing in the local park down the street or exploring Carlsbad Caverns National Park, can inspire the next generation of conservationists, while reaping all of the health benefits that go along with an active lifestyle. I encourage New Mexico families to take advantage of Kids to Parks Day and visit our treasured public lands.”

“With over 50 state and national parks in Hawaii, our resolution encourages keiki to get outdoors and stay active. Our parks offer an important opportunity for our next generation to explore and learn how natural resources contribute to Hawaii’s rich cultural heritage,” Hirono said. “By designating May 18 as National Kids to Parks Day, we can help instill in our keiki the importance of healthy outdoor recreation and environmental stewardship for years to come.”

“In New Jersey, and all across the country, our parks are a national treasure that allow Americans to immerse themselves in our natural environment and the great outdoors,” Booker said. “Kids to Parks Day encourages kids and families to enjoy our state and national parks, while helping instill a love and appreciation for the great outdoors among the next generation.”

More than 1 million people participated in last year’s Kids to Parks Day, according to the National Park Trust.

This year’s Kids to Parks Day will be celebrated Saturday, May 18, 2019. To find a list of events near you, click here.


Kids to Parks Day Contest Winners Skype with White House

United class distance learning via Skype with White House

Originally published on April 18, 2019 by Daily Review Atlas, written by Jeff Holt

MONMOUTH — History is going to be made today at United West Elementary School.

Kindergarten teacher Emily Higbee and her students will be Skyping with the White House — the first time this has ever been done.

“We are going to be the first in the nation to have distance learning with the White House,” Higbee said.

The White House and surrounding grounds constitute a national park, which will be the focus of the lesson.

“It’s called the President’s Park,” Higbee said. “I am not shocked, having done distance learning in the past. Distance learning is available through most national parks and monuments. It is connecting these kids to the world that is literally at their fingertips. I have a class of 18 amazing kids who are taking a journey. The two words I’m really proud of them knowing is to preserve and to protect.”

Higbee has made sure her students are quite familiar with the likes of Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th president of the United States who is an icon in the National Park Service.

“We talk about everything from the president to their animals,” Higbee said. “My kids already know their is an Oval Office and they understand the first lady is married to the president, and that the White House once burned down and had to be rebuilt again.”

Higbee said that after the Skyping today, her students will receive an official Junior Ranger certificate.

United Technology Coordinator Trish Bertelsen also played a key role in making this happen, acquiring picture books for the students in Higbee’s classroom to help familiarize them even more with pictures of the White House.

And for the alphabet, Higbee said she has tied it in with her students. For example, for the letter “s” she said it stands for Statue of Liberty.

“I’m excited for them to experience everything they are learning in the classroom,” Higbee said.

Higbee, in her fifth year as a teacher at United West, said she grew up going to national parks as a kid with her family. So, the kids in her classroom were able to make homemade passports.

“I’m hoping to instill a core memory (for the kids),” Higbee said. “It’s the first for everybody.”

Another unique thing that Higbee has implemented into her teaching is “table talk.” It can be at home over dinner or in their car with their parents.

“Family is very important here at United,” Higbee said. “Just having conversation and bouncing off thoughts and talking about their day.”

Higbee and her students will also be going to Starved Rock State Park on May 24. That will be their Stewardship Project. They were one of the winners of the Kids to Parks Day National School Contest. The National Park Trust (NPT) provided them with a scholarship to help make it happen. They were given a classroom Buddy Bison and Buddy Bison T-shirts to wear on that day.

Kids to Parks Day School Contest Winners

National Park Trust is pleased to announce the winners of our 2019 Kids to Parks Day School Contest! The school contest is a national program providing up to $1,000 to Title I schools to cover transportation costs, program and stewardship project fees, and educational materials to encourage outdoor education, recreation, and stewardship. This year, 67 schools were selected to receive funding that will support over 4,000 students from grades pre-K through 12. The selected schools represent 25 states plus Washington, DC and Puerto Rico. 

Thank you to our sponsors, The First Solar Corporate Charitable Fund and Hydro Flask, whose gift will fund many of these park experiences. For more information about the contest, contact Katie Zimmerman at katie@parktrust.org or call 301-279-7275.


State City School
Alaska Anchorage Chinook Elementary School – Girl Scout Troop 390
Wasilla Finger Lake Elementary School – 4th Grade (Ms. Heintzman)
Wasilla Finger Lake Elementary School – 4th Grade (Mr. Schwartz)
Arizona Tucson AmeriSchools Academy
Flagstaff Sinagua Middle School
California Coalinga Coalinga High School
King City Del Rey Elementary School
Moreno Valley Moreno Valley High School
Los Angeles Ninth Street School
Shafter Shafter Youth Center
Bell Gardens St. Gertrude the Great School
Colorado Saguache Mountain Valley School
Delaware Newark Wilson Elementary School – 3rd Grade
Newark Wilson Elementary School – 4th Grade
District of Columbia Washington, DC Dorothy Height Elementary School
Florida Enterprise Enterprise Elementary School
Boyton Beach SouthTech Academy
Georgia Douglasville Arbor Station Elementary School
Fort Gaines Clay County Elementary School
Covington Middle Ridge Elementary School
Hawaii Captain Cook Honaunau Elementary School
Honoka’a Honoka’a High School
Lihu’e Kawaikini New Century Public Charter School
Idaho Aberdeen Aberdeen Middle School
Council Council High School
Pocatello Jefferson Elementary School – 5th Grade (Ms. Leavitt)
Pocatello Jefferson Elementary School – 5th Grade (Ms. Phelps)
Pocatello Jefferson Elementary School – 5th Grade (Mr. Richardson)
Caldwell Notus Elementary School
Illinois Donovan Donovan Elementary School
Monmouth United West Elementary School
Kansas Wichita Jardine STEM and Career Explorations Academy
Louisiana Scott Scott Middle School – 5th Grade
Scott Scott Middle School- 6th Grade
Scott Scott Middle School – 7th Grade
Scott Scott Middle School – 8th Grade
Maryland Baltimore Catonsville Education Center – RICA (Ms. Wasserbach)
Baltimore Catonsville Education Center – RICA – (Mr. Friedlander)
Elkton Cecil Manor Elementary School
Silver Spring Harmony Hills Elementary School
Silver Spring Jackson Road Elementary School (Proposal Prepared by the Bullis School)
Michigan Sparta Appleview Elementary School
Burr Oak Burr Oak High School – 7th Grade
Burr Oak Burr Oak High School – 9th Grade
Calumet Horizons Alternative High School – 10th Grade
Calumet Horizons Alternative High School – 11th Grade
Calumet Horizons Alternative High School – 12th Grade
Grand Rapids Southeast Kelloggsville Elementary School
Missouri St. Louis Marian Middle School
Maitland Nodaway-Holt Elementary School
Nebraska Sioux City Swett Elementary School
New Jersey Cape May Court House Middle Township High School
New York Cheektowaga Cheektowaga Central High School
Brooklyn P.S. 7 Abraham Lincoln School
Wellsville Wellsville YMCA After-School Program
North Dakota Valley City Jefferson Elementary School
Ohio Cleveland Malachi Center
Mt. Gilead Mount Gilead Elementary School
Akron National Inventors Hall of Fame STEM Middle School
Oklahoma Stuart Stuart School
Oregon Milwaukie Sabin Schellenberg Professional Technical Center
Puerto Rico Toa Alta Manuel Velilla Cabrera Middle
Tennessee Afton Chuckey-Doak Middle School
Smithville Smithville Elementary School
Texas McAllen Lamar Academy
Dallas Trinity Environmental Academy
Houston YES Prep Northbrook High School
Virginia Alexandria Bucknell Elementary School – 4th Grade (Ms. Ganjei)
 Alexandria Bucknell Elementary School – 4th Grade (Ms. McKinney)
Richmond Franklin Military Academy
Glen Allen Greenwood Elementary School
Newport News Greenwood Elementary School
Lynchburg Heritage High School
Highland Springs Highland Springs High School
Henrico Lakeside Elementary School
Washington Montesano Simpson Elementary School
Tonasket Tonasket Elementary School
Wisconsin Laona Laona High School

National Park Trust Receives ‘Parks for All’ Grant from Hydro Flask

National Park Trust (NPT) is pleased to announce that it has been selected as a 2018 recipient of Hydro Flask’s ‘Parks for All’ Charitable Giving Program. Parks for All supports the development, maintenance, and accessibility of public green spaces in the US and beyond so people everywhere can live healthier, happier, and more fulfilled lives.

With the $50,000 gift from Hydro Flask, National Park Trust will be able to support 50 Title I schools—impacting more than 2,200 students—through their Kids to Parks Day National School Contest. For many of these students, this will be their first park experience. The Kids to Parks Day School Contest is a national program providing up to $1,000 per school to cover transportation costs and program fees, the biggest barrier to the outdoors for students in Title I schools. This year’s contest closes on February 14th and is open to Pre K through 12th graders that attend Title I or low-income schools.

In 2018, through the Kids to Parks Day National School Contest, National Park Trust provided over 100 grants benefiting 5,000 students in 35 states and the District of Columbia. Using their grants, the students discovered a local park where they enjoyed outdoor recreation, used the park as an outdoor science or history classroom,and learned about their role as park stewards by participating in service projects.

“It is so exciting for Hydro Flask to be able to make such a large and meaningful contribution to the incredible work being done by nonprofits in the realm of building, restoring, maintaining, and increasing access and education around Parks for All,” said Indigo Teiwes, Senior Corporate Social Responsibility Manager for Hydro Flask. “The staff team that reviewed the applications is inspired by the breadth and depth of work being done by our 2018 grantees.”

“On this Giving Tuesday, we are thrilled to share that we have been awarded Parks for All funding from Hydro Flask,” said Grace Lee, executive director of National Park Trust, “with their early lead support, Hydro Flask is helping us to build an “access trail” so that many more children from under-served communities across the country can celebrate Kids to Parks Day in May.

Find out more about this grant program at www.hydroflask.com or read the program press release here. Read more about the Kids to Parks Day National School Contest.



National Park Trust (NPT) is a non-profit dedicated to preserving parks today and creating park stewards for tomorrow. NPT is the only land trust with a comprehensive mission of protecting national parks through land acquisition, and creating a pipeline of future park stewards by getting kids to parks. Since 1983, NPT has completed 70 land projects in 31 states, 1 US Territory, and Washington, DC. This school year, NPT will provide an estimated 25,000 under-served kids with park trips through their nationally recognized Buddy Bison School Program and Kids to Parks Day National School Contest, both of which support Title I schools.

Find out more at www.parktrust.org



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Learn more about Hydro Flask, Parks for All, and their mission to save the world from lukewarm at https://www.hydroflask.com.



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