Caution - Roadwork on Highway 16 - Expect Delays
Construction projects both along highway 16 and the Jewel Cave parking lot are planned during the summer. The visitor center is open daily with tours scheduled throughout the day. Come early, pm tours are usually full. No reservations for cave tours.
Highway 16 construction near Jewel Cave entrance
Construction of Highway 16 through Jewel Cave National Monument is progressing on schedule. Motorists should use caution while traveling through the construction zone. Visitors to Jewel Cave should plan extra travel time and come early in the day. More »
The parking lot at Jewel Cave takes shape
Jewel Cave's parking lot project is on schedule for completion by September 30. The patio area outside the visitor center is planned for work in August. Signage along a service road and staff assistance will help guide visitors to the visitor center. More »
Jewel Cave Explores and Discovers Cave Education
Jewel Cave National Monument is teaming up with the University of Sioux Falls (USF) with an educational workshop for teachers entitled "Explore and Discover Cave Education."The workshop derives from Project Underground, a national curriculum for educators of kindergarten through high school academic levels.The workshop is slated for September 26 –28, 2014, with sessions starting Friday evening and ending late morning on Sunday. An academic credit hour is available for interested participants.
Project Underground, highlighting cave and karst educational programs, has been used in National Parks across the nation, including Carlsbad Caverns National Park in New Mexico, Mammoth Cave National Park in Kentucky, and Timpanogos Cave National Monument in Utah.Carol Zokaites, National Coordinator of Project Underground, states "It is wonderful to add Jewel Cave National Monument to our growing list of train the trainer courses.Being the third longest cave in the world, with a rich story relating to geology and science, I am confident that participating teachers will enjoy the hands-on lesson plans and dynamic on-site activities."
The workshop offers ten sessions that mix science with adventure.Participating teachers and educators will be expected to take part in learning about bats, belly-crawl mapping, and a host of other lively sessions.The learned activities create an awareness of cave and karst areas, as well as a better understanding of human impact on natural resources.Complementing South Dakota content standards through general science and mathematics, participants can take their skills back to their classrooms and enhance current lesson plans.
Chief of Interpretation Bradley Block comments, "Educational programming continues to expand at Jewel Cave, and we are excited to host a teacher's workshop in order to engage even more audiences.Not only does this workshop complement the Call to Action Plan of the National Park Service, by providing educator training, it also creates an educational bond between the monument and local school systems."Educators, teachers, naturalists, and outdoor learning instructors will have the opportunity for both in-class sessions and field activities.At the conclusion of the workshop, teachers receive an extensive curriculum guide for future use.
Workshop activities and sessions begin on Friday night, September 26 at 7:00 p.m.Field activities take place all day on Saturday.The workshop concludes on Sunday morning, September 28 around 11:00 a.m.There is a $75.00 registration fee for the workshop, which covers program materials, supplies, and some meals.An additional fee of $45.00 covers the academic credit through USF.
For more information or to register for the workshop, interested participants are encouraged to call the visitor center at 605-673-8300.Online information is also available at www.nps.gov/jeca by clicking on the For Teachers link.
Did You Know?
Over 80,000 people a year go on cave tours at Jewel Cave National Monument. In the summer season, visitors can tour 3 different areas of Jewel Cave.