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Torrey, UT (December 6, 2015) – Capitol Reef National Park is one of 113 national parks selected to
receive afield trip grant from the National Park Foundation, the official charity of America's national parks. This grant will fund transportation for Salina Elementary School fourth graders, teachers and chaperones to visit Capitol Reef National Park as part of their social studies curriculum studying Utah pioneer history.
As part of the National Park Foundation's Open OutDoors for Kids program, this grant (funded in part by Disney) provides funding for materials and logistics to make national park field trips, citizen science projects, Junior Ranger activities, experiential learning opportunities, and more possible.
Including this year's grantees, National Park Foundation grants have made it possible for more than 300,000 students to visit national parks.
"Through programs like Open OutDoors for Kids and the Find Your Park/Encuentra Tu Parque movement, we are creating the next generation of park stewards, connecting youth across the country to these special places and inspiring their natural curiosity and love for them," said Will Shafroth, president and CEO of the National Park Foundation. "We are grateful to all of our partners, including Disney, that make such programs possible and help more people find their park."
"By sharing parks with kids at such a young age, we're building a strong generation of park stewards who will care for and protect these treasured places into the next 100 years," said Jonathan B. Jarvis, director of the National Park Service. "Thanks to our philanthropic partner, the National Park Foundation, we're able to
strengthen and enrich our parks through the lasting bond these experiences foster."
Salina Elementary fourth graders are visited twice a year by a park ranger from Capitol Reef National Park who teaches the students about Utah's prehistoric cultures and pioneer settlement. The school then brings these students to Capitol Reef for an on-site field trip during which they tour the historic Mormon pioneer Gifford Homestead and the one-room historic Fruita Schoolhouse, built in 1896. This grant defrays
the costs of transportation in 2016, the Centennial Anniversary Year of the National Park Service.
"National Parks are the ideal extension of the classroom," says Leah McGinnis, Superintendent at Capitol Reef National Park. "Educational experiences in the park guide students towards broader perspectives. Capitol Reef's Historic Fruita District captures moments in history which shape our national identity."
For the full list of park grantees, and their projects, visit www.nationalparks.org/ticket-adventure.
Since 2014, Disney has been the lead sponsor of Open OutDoors for Kids, helping youth experience a national park, many of them for the first time.
ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK SERVICE
More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 409 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at: www.nps.gov.
ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION
The National Park Foundation is the official charity of America's national parks and nonprofit partner to the National Park Service. Chartered by Congress in 1967, the National Park Foundation raises private
funds to help PROTECT more than 84 million acres of national parks through critical conservation and preservation efforts, CONNECT all Americans with their incomparable natural landscapes, vibrant culture and rich history, and INSPIRE the next generation of park stewards. Find out more and become a
part of the national park community at www.nationalparks.org.