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Let's Move Outside!

National Park Week (April 16-24) celebrates Healthy Parks, Healthy People. It's a busy month full of fun reasons to get outdoors. April 23 is Junior Ranger Day. Children ages 6 and up can earn Junior Ranger badges and patches by completing activities that will help them learn more about their national parks.

Earth Day (April 22) is also celebrated in April, and some states, such as Alaska, Maryland, and Montana honor April as their state's archeology month! Go to the Society for American Archaeology's state archaeology month page to find out when your state celebrates archeological research and discovery.

Let's Move Outside and visit America's Great Outdoors during National Park Week! These two programs encourage all Americans to head out-of-doors—where you'll find a lot of activities having to do with archeology.

Here are some great ideas to get you out-of-doors and moving around this April!

Discover archeology in Alaska this April! Archeologists across the state organize public lectures and slide shows, hands-on activities for kids, and museum displays and tours. If you really want to get a work out, why not enter the annual Alaska atlatl completion? The Aleutian National Historic Area on Kiska, one of the Aleutian Islands, commemorates a WWII battle recently studied by an extensive cultural landscape survey.

Maryland has its own set of activities planned for its April archeology month. Join archeologists and others as they go on tours, visit exhibits, and give lectures. Why not grab your trowel and volunteer for one of the many fieldwork or lab work opportunities? Visit Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine in Baltimore, MD and learn about the construction of the fort and what life was like in the early 1800s based on archeological excavations and artifacts.

April is also archeology month in Montana! Join other interested groups for workshops, readings, lectures, hikes, trainings, an artifact road show, and even a flint knapping demonstration! March by the Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site to visit and explore buildings and fortifications reconstructed based on three seasons of archeological fieldwork.

Can't make it to these events this month? Check with a national park near you about archeological activities outside, or check out the Archeology Program's For the Public page for information about volunteer opportunities, events in your state, or amateur certification programs. If you want to do more travelling, check out our Visit Archeology travel guides.

  • World War II anti-aircraft gun overlooking Sitka Harbor. [photo by Dirk Spennemann]
  • Archeology on display: a chamber pot from Fort McHenry. [photo]
  • Moving outside on a ranger led hike. [NPS photo]

TSM/MJB