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Contact: Heather Boothe, (970) 641-2337 ext. 206
(GUNNISON) – April 14, 2008
It’s spring at Blue Mesa, and Curecanti rangers have lots of reasons to celebrate! Our brand new Junior Ranger activity book has just been printed, and Curecanti ranger staff have put together a free afternoon of fun at Curecanti in honor of National Junior Ranger Day, Saturday, April 26, 2008.
“Explore. Learn. Protect.” This is the motto of the Junior Ranger program, which is designed to help connect children and their families to the special places that the National Park Service preserves and protects. Each year, the National Park Service celebrates the 391 parks around the country with National Park Week, April 17-27. Starting in 2007, the NPS designated one day during this week as Junior Ranger Day, celebrating the youth in our parks. The National Park Foundation has generously funded materials for this day, including a newly redesigned Junior Ranger booklet.
Ranger John Kuehnert has assembled several activities to help children ages 5-12 enjoy their parks. From 1:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. on April 26, children will be led on a “sensory” walk near the visitor center, using their five senses to experience the park. Between 1:45 p.m. and 2:45 p.m. children will explore how to prepare for a day in the park, how to practice “leave no trace,” and engage in activities to learn about the other 390 parks in the system. All children will receive the new junior ranger book, and at 2:45 p.m. participants will be sworn in as official Junior Rangers and will receive an official Junior Ranger badge as well as a patch, available this day only.
These special Junior Ranger Day activities will take place at the Elk Creek Visitor Center, 16 miles west of Gunnison on Highway 50. The first activity begins at 1:00 p.m., and will end about 3:00 p.m. Children may attend all or part of the day. All activities are free. Please call John at 641-2337 x205 to make reservations or for more information.