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Every Kid in a Park

Every Kid in a Park

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers  continues to support President Obama’s initiative Every Kid in a Park pass program, which officially begins its second year. Launched last year, the initiative gives fourth grade students and their families free access to federal lands and waters as well as some state parks for a full school year.

Fourth graders can visit the Every Kid in a Park website at www.everykidinapark.gov and complete a fun educational activity to obtain and print their pass. Students can trade in their paper pass for a more durable pass at participating federal sites nationwide listed on the website. The pass grants free entry for fourth graders and up to three accompanying adults or an entire non-commercial vehicle for drive-in parks at more than 2,000 federal sites nationwide. The pass features a new design this year and is valid from Sept. 1, 2016 through Aug. 31, 2017.

Last year, USACE hosted about 7,000 fourth graders and their families at lakes and rivers across the country. Nearly 250 USACE sites are participating in the Every Kid in a Park program and provide an opportunity for students to enjoy the great outdoors and learn about the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) that goes into managing our nation’s waterways. Last year, USACE also received 8 transportation grants, which allowed schools to take nearly 2,500 students on field trips to USACE sites.

A primary goal of the Every Kid in a Park initiative is to bridge the growing disconnect between the next generation and the great outdoors, and to inspire children to become future stewards of our nation’s natural and historic treasures.

“The Every Kid in the Park initiative connects kids to their local parks, and has been so successful in making sure kids take advantage of all that our outdoors have to offer. Millions of children visit Army Corps of Engineers parks with their families and classrooms each year, and this initiative helps introduce millions more to the joys of recreation, education and our nation’s water resources,” said Honorable Jo-Ellen Darcy, Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works.

USACE is among the nation’s leading federal providers of outdoor recreation with more than 5,000 recreation sites at 403 USACE lakes and river projects located in 43 states. To find the USACE recreation site near you, visit www.CorpsLakes.us.

For more on Every Kid in a Park follow on Twitter @EveryKidinaPark, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.

 

CELEBRATE SOMETHING WE ALL SHARE: OUR PUBLIC LANDS!

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will waive day use fees normally charged at boat launch ramps and swimming beaches at its recreation areas nationwide in recognition of National Public Lands Day on Saturday, Sept. 24.

The waiver does not apply to camping and camping-related services, or fees for specialized facilities such as group picnic shelters. Other agencies and partners that manage recreation areas located on USACE lands are encouraged, but not required, to comply with this waiver of day use fees in the areas they manage.

In addition, volunteers who participate in one of USACE’s National Public Lands Day activities will be issued a fee-free coupon if the volunteer site is participating in the coupon program. Volunteers should check with their local USACE project for more information. The fee-free coupon is valid for one year from date of issue and may be used for one day of entrance or day use fees at any participating federal agency’s park, forest or recreation area that charges either of these types of fees.

Thousands of volunteers are expected to support the more than 80 USACE projects participating in this year’s National Public Lands Day, the largest annual volunteer hands-on restoration activity of its kind. Volunteers at USACE sites will take part in tree planting, erosion control, bank stabilization, building trails, restoring recreation areas, trash pickup, removing invasive species and non-native plants, improving wildlife habitats, harvesting prairie plant seeds and rehabilitating playgrounds.

Last year, more than 11,000 volunteers participated in National Public Lands Day activities at 114 USACE lakes. The volunteers cleaned 1,001 miles of shoreline, maintained 288 miles of trails, removed 128,000 pounds of trash, and planted approximately 1,300 trees and shrubs on USACE-managed lands.

USACE has been involved with National Public Lands Day since its inception in 1994 and has consistently been one of the event’s largest providers of sites and volunteers. USACE manages more than 400 lake and river projects in 43 states. With 90 percent of these projects located within 50 miles of metropolitan areas, USACE sites provide a wide range of safe and affordable outdoor recreation opportunities close to home.

Click here for For more information on National Public Lands Day or or call your local USACE lake or river office. For more information on USACE recreation opportunities visit Corps Lakes.