In today's world, kids spend 7.65 hours per day on some kind of screened device. Compare that to a mere 7 minutes that the average child spends in unstructured outdoor play. These numbers are having a profound effect on our kids' physical and mental health. Time spent active outdoors has been shown to improve health issues, from obesity to ADHD, and the well-being of everyone. But where do you start?
Dr. Olson Huff was awarded the 'Fostering New Horizons Award' at the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundations 20th Anniversary celebration for his work establishing and developing the Kids in Parks program.
The newest TRACK Trail opened at the Heritage Trail Greenway in Newton, North Carolina on November 9.
The town turned out to open the newest TRACK Trail at Creekside Park!
On August 25, the National Park Service celebrates its 101st birthday! For 101 years, our parks have proved again and again why they are America's "best idea." Not only do they provide opportunities for people from around the country and world to immerse themselves in beauty and rich heritage of our natural resources, but they work diligently to protect and preserve those resources for the future. To celebrate, every National Park is inviting you to visit for free on August 25! This is the perfect opportunity to visit that park you've always wanted to visit or hike that TRACK Trail you've been dreaming of.
Play a fun round of disc golf surrounded by lush nature and stunning views of the Great Smoky Mountains...
Four TRACK Trails are in the path of totality of the upcoming solar eclipse! Experience darkness in the middle of day at these cool places...
In conjunction with the National Park Service’s ParkRx Day, celebrated Sunday, April 23, Meritus Health became the only health system in the state of Maryland to partner with area parks for the Kids in Parks program’s TRACK Rx initiative.
As part of its Hike NC intiative, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina is donation $100,000 to five nonprofits and Kids in Parks was selected as one! The more votes we get, the higher the percentage of the donation we will receive.
On April 17, Kids in Parks celebrated the grand opening of the Haw Creek Elementary School’s Citizen Science / STEM TRACK Trail in Asheville, N.C. The celebration was held in conjunction with the school’s Earth Week, and coincided with the North Carolina State Science Festival. The trail materials were overlaid on the school’s existing half-mile hiking trail. Throughout the week, teachers and their students flocked to the trail to learn about science found in nature through hands-on activities performed at a series of experiment stations.
As Americans, it’s easy for us to recognize the issues surrounding children and their lack of connection to and interaction with nature here in the United States; but the problem of children disconnecting from nature is truly a global challenge. In March, Kids in Parks Director Jason Urroz attended the Salzburg Global Seminar’s session titled, “The Child in the City: Health, Parks, and Play,” to work with 50 leaders representing 23 countries to address the multiple facets of this important issue.
On April 23, the Kids in Parks program joined the National Park Service, National ParkRx initiative, and several other park prescription programs from across the country in celebrating the second annual National Park Rx Day. The annual ceremony takes place on the last day of National Park Week, and doctors nationwide prescribe the events to their patients to get them active outdoors and connect them with the health benefits associated with spending time in parks.