By Emily Le Coz/NEMS Daily Journal
TUPELO – Children can work their way toward a Junior Ranger badge through a free program offered this summer by the Natchez Trace Parkway.
Each Saturday in June and July, children will gather at 10 a.m. at the Natchez Trace Parkway Visitor Center in Tupelo for various lessons in natural and cultural history.
They’ll learn about the beavers who live along the parkway, how to pitch a tent and start campfires and identify wildlife tracks. They also will participate in a knowledge quiz for a chance to win several door prizes.
“There is a big disconnect between kids and the outdoors,” said Amy Williams, park guide. “These types of programs really instill a love of the outdoors as well as respect for nature, and it’s always great to find free family activities.”
The program is open to all children, but geared toward those ages 7-12, of all geographic areas. Parents are encouraged, but not required, to participate in the 45-minute lessons.
Pre-registration isn’t necessary, Williams said. “Just show up and have a good time.”
To earn their badges, children must attend at least five of the nine sessions offered this summer. Or they can complete activities in a free junior ranger booklet available online or at the Visitor Center.
Contact Emily Le Coz at (662) 678-1588 or email@example.com.
Natchez Trace Parkway Junior Ranger Summer
When: Every Saturday in June and
July, at 10 a.m.
Where: Visitor Center, at milepost
Who: All children, but preferably
those ages 7-12
Information: Call (800) 305-7417 or visit www.nps.gov/natr.
Shiloh’s Junior Ranger Day
– The Corinth Battlefield unit of Shiloh National Military Park will host a free Junior Ranger Day on June 4. Children 12 and under can
interact with a park ranger portraying a Civil War soldier and learn about Civil War artillery. Registration is requested, and children must be accompanied by an adult.
Call (662) 287-9273.