La Grande, Ore., July 31, 2023 – Union County Parks and Recreation, the City of La Grande Parks & Recreation Department, Oregon Parks Forever and the Kids in Parks program invite local children, families and community members to celebrate the grand opening of TRACK Trails at Morgan Lake and the Mount Emily Recreation Area. The partners will host a ribbon cutting ceremony Tuesday, August 8th at 10 a.m. at the Morgan Lake trailhead and at 2:00 p.m. at the Mount Emily Recreation Area - Red Apple Trail trailhead.
TRACK Trails are a type of environmental scavenger hunt for young children and their families to get unplugged and active outdoors, offering a series of self-guided activities that turn an ordinary hike into a fun-filled, discovery-packed adventure. Each trail has four brochure-led adventures available that help kids learn about topics such as birds, trees, flowers, insects, and animal tracks.
Kids who participate in the program can register their TRACK Trail adventures at www.KidsInParks.com to earn a series of prizes designed to make their next outdoor adventure even more fun and meaningful. Since the program’s inception, children have completed more than 1 million TRACK Trail adventures.
Oregon Parks Forever has set a goal of funding 50 TRACK Trails across the state of Oregon. These trails, join the network of TRACK Trails already established in Madras, Prineville, and Estacada. Trails in Dallas and Newport will join the system later this summer.
“With each of our TRACK Trails, we hope to engage children in the joys of outdoor exploration,” said Jason Urroz, director of Kids in Parks. “Our ultimate goal is to provide families with a network of opportunities to get active outdoors and fall in love with nature.”
“We’re very excited about our partnership with Kids in Parks and Oregon Parks Forever to bring additional recreation opportunities and outdoor education to Morgan Lake,” said LaGrande Parks & Recreation Director, Stu Spence. “Engaging kids and families outdoors is one of the most important things we can do as a community.”
“We are excited to have the opportunity to bring a Track Trail to Mt. Emily. Our goal is to provide easily accessible, sustainable recreation for our community,” said Josh Ford MERA/Parks Coordinator for Union County Parks. “Track Trails educates our next generation of trail stewards ensuring quality outdoor opportunities for others in the future.”
“We are glad to arrange funding for the growing network of TRACK Trail locations in Oregon,” said Seth Miller, executive director of Oregon Parks Forever. “Our mission is to enhance the experience and accessibility of Oregon’s Parks & Forests, and this is an important project for us.”