Ranger-led Interpretive tours & walks (described below) are offered during the park's open season May 24 - Oct 31.Check the Schedule of Events page for more details. Download the Programs at the Park 2014 brochure.
Tour size is limited and reservations are recommended. For reservations call 802/457-3368 x22. Tours that require a ticked are marked with "$" ($8.00 for adults, $4.00 for seniors, 15 and younger are free). All other tours are free.
Weekly Noon-time Special Tours
Art, big trees, hidden spaces, garden history, and more! Throughout the week at noon, rangers will offer a special short-tour on one of the park's many unique stories and places. Enjoy these tours on their own or as a compliment to a Mansion tour. Topics and locations change throughout the week -- check at the visitor desk or web for details. You never know what you might find!
Ranger-led tours of the Mansion are offered daily throughout the season. 10AM to 4PM, May 24 - October 31. Tickets are $8 for adults, $4.00 for seniors (age 62 and older); 15 and younger are free. Please call for reservations and daily schedule: 802/457-3368 x22.
America's Best Idea
What comes to mind when you think of National Parks: Grand Canyon, Yosemite, Yellowstone? Yes, but there are many more -- over 400 actually! Every one of them tells an important story of this country's history and heritage. Join us on National Park Service Founder's Day to discover some of these hidden treasures and tell us about your favorite park!
Appalachian Trails & Tales
Extending from Maine to Georgia, the Appalachian Trail is one of the greatest examples of citizen stewardship. Join a national park ranger on aTrail for a 3-hour hike to explore a section of the AT and the history that shaped this landscape. Meet at Billings Farm & Museum Visitor Center. Co-led by the Green Mountain Club staff. Moderate to difficult, 3 miles.
Become an I-Naturalist
Flowers, trees, amphibians, butterflies, oh my! Step outside and start recording the fascinating world around you, and share your observations with a growing network of "citizen scientists". Curiosity required, no experience necessary.
Causes & Consequences:The Civil War Home Front in Woodstock, Vermont
This 2-hour ranger-led tour is one of the park's most popular special programs. See what life was like on the home front during the Civil War in Woodstock. Included are places associated with the Underground Railroad, abolition meetings, the town's free African-American community and Woodstock's pivotal role in the Union war effort in Vermont. This tour offers deeper understanding of the far-reaching effects of the Civil War on the role of women, the meaning of citizenship, and the beginnings of land conservation.
Conservation Chronicles *
From Native Americans to early European settlers, to land trusts, national parks, and wilderness areas, conservation thought and practice has taken many forms in North America over the past four centuries.Using words, images, and films of the past, explore the attitudes and actions that have shaped our relationship with the land we call the United States in this multimedia presentation.
*Available by advance reservation only
Conservation Through the Artist's Eye
American landscape paintings have inspired conservationists for over 100 years. See paintings by Hudson River School artists on this 1 1/2 mansion tour and discover how landscape paintings profoundly influenced the development of a conservation ethic. $
Discover Your National Park
Design your own park experience! The parks offers an array of activities and guides that you can use to create a park experience that's tailored to your interests and time.
● Carriage Barn Visitor Center - Explore our exhibits, bookstore, and kid's corner that is stocked with games and crafts supplies.
● Carriages and Woobarn Exhibit - Home to a collection of carriages, from sporty sulkies to hard-working logging sleds. A must see before your walk up Mount Tom
● Adventure Packs - Step outside into the park's gardens or take a day hike on Mount Tom with one of these adventure packs full of engaging activities for the whole family. Choose from Art, Trees, Wildlife, or Recreation.
● Quests - Three great guides offer new ways to "see" the park. A Walk with the Giants is all about the big trees. North Woods Hike gives you the lens of an ecologist as you explore the forest. Gardens in Bloom shares the history and highlights of our beautiful gardens.
Fall Foliage Walk (Offered in October)
View vibrant autumn foliage in this 2-hour ranger-led walk along historic carriage roads while learning about the story of the Mount Tom forest. Meet at the Carriage Barn Visitor Center. Easy 2 1/2 miles.
The Cold War spurred proliferation of technologies with the power of vast destructiveness, and in its shadow a new environmental consciousness emerged. Go back in time with dramatic historic news reels, and movie clips to explore this pivotal time. A highlight of the program is a tour of a fully-stocked 1960's-era fallout shelter. $
Forestry for the Birds
Audubon Vermont, Vermont Coverts and the National Park Service are teaming up to offer this guided walking tour of bird-friendly forestry work. Visit forest stands with recent cutting designed to improve growing conditions for trees and high-quality nesting habitat for bird species.
Future of the Forest
Join us for a hike exploring the history and stewardship of the oldest professionally-managed forest in the United States. During this 2-hour hike, see some of the most unique parts of the park and visit stands with active forestry. Meet at Prosper parking lot. Easy, 3 miles.
Gardens in Bloom
Explore the park's colorful gardens on this short 1-hour walk. More than beautiful scenery, this landscape reflects layers of careful design that are linked to the conservation movement in the 19th century.
Green Energy Showcase
Get a behind-the-scenes look at the park's "green" technologies on this 1-hour walking tour. Included on this easy walk are a high efficiency wood boiler, hybrid cars, solar panels, a composting site, and our Platinum LEED certified Forest Center. Learn high- and low-tech
solutions that you can use at home.
Hidden Spaces Unique Places
Discover the park's distinctive historic buildings with their unusual architectural styles and interesting histories. Learn about the variety of strategies and
techniques to preserve these landmark structures on this sneak-peak walking tour through seldom-seen building interiors and exteriors. $
Visit a horse-logging site in action and learn about the 150-year legacy of forestry on Mount Tom. Explore the process from trees to boards -- how trees are marked and harvested and the various ways wood is used in our daily lives.
Junior Ranger Program
Throughout the summer, youth 6- 12 year can join a ranger for an exciting, 1.5 hour hands-on exploration of a variety of topics, ranging from trees to art to outdoor safety. Kids can earn a Junior Ranger Badge and a stamped memory book. A self-guided Junior Ranger program is also available upon request.
Junior Ranger Activity Guide
Packed with great activities for children and their families to learn more about the park's history and its legacy of stewardship while earning a Junior Ranger Badge. Pick one up at the Carriage Barn Visitor Center or download it.
Landscape History: A Walk Through Time
Explore the park's colorful gardens and grounds on this 90-minute walk. More than beautiful scenery, this landscape reflects layers of careful design that are linked to the conservation movement in the 19th century.
Lost Big Trees
Americans are fascinated by the big trees of the west. But here in the east we have our own big trees: white pines, elms, hemlocks, and the American chestnut. This 1.5-hour program explores the history, ecology, and future of the big eastern trees.
School is Out! Camps are In!
Ages 4-6 June 23-27 -- Fun in the Forest
Become a "Nature Explorer" by exploring the natural world through art, music, movement and hands on play in the forest. A partnership with Artistree/Purple Crayon Productions.
Ages 11-15 August 4-10 -- Mountains and Rivers Forever: Arts in the Wild
Explore Earth, Wind, Fire, and Water through nature-based crafts and expolorations through rivers and trails. A partnership with the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps and local teachers.
Spirituality & the Environment
This 1.5 hour walking tour will explore ways faith has informed stewardship practice and the appreciation of nature. The tour includes a closer look at original Hudson River School paintings inside the Mansion. $
Walk for Wellness
We all know that adding a little physical activity to our day offers health benefits. It helps with weight control, builds stronger bones and muscles, and can even boost your mood or help you sleep better. And it's fun! The park carriage roads and trails are well suited for recreational walking, health and reflection. Join park staff every Wednesday at 5PM June through July for a one hour walk. For your heart and happiness!
Warblers, Woods and Watersheds
Keeping tabs on the ecological conditions of the park (along with 11 other regional parks) is the mission of the NPS Northeast Temperate Network (NETN). Join NETN staff for this 2-hour hike to try your hand at the basics of monitoring birds, salamanders, forest health, and water quality. Meet at Prosper parking lot. Easy, 3 miles.