Washington, DC - U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell announces the fourth annual National Get Outdoors Day in support of President Obama’s ‘America’s Great Outdoors’ initiative and First Lady’s ‘Let’s Move! Outside’ Campaign. The day is set to encourage kids and their families to reconnect with nature and explore their national forests and other public lands in what is also known as ‘GO day’.
The activities of the Forest Service help connect children to their natural environment, and support two key priorities of the Obama administration: President Obama’s America’s Great Outdoors initiative that seeks to connect people to the outdoors and creates partnerships between the federal government and American communities on conservation issues; and the Let’s Move! Outside campaign launched by First Lady Michelle Obama, which strives to offset childhood obesity through outdoor activities and healthier lifestyles. The agency also has collaborated with the Ad Council to develop a new national campaign of public service announcements to ‘Re-connect Kids with Nature’
With summer nearing, it is a perfect time to get outside and enjoy what America’s lands and waterways have to offer. “GO day provides a great opportunity for kids big and small to get up close and personal with our country’s amazing forests and grasslands,” said Tidwell. “These early activities help bring families together, create lasting memories and instill a lifelong appreciation for our natural surroundings.”
In order to uphold the mission of the U.S. Forest Service, to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations, more than 80 Forest Service locations nationwide will be providing free recreational and educational activities. Many events are designed to better engage urban and multicultural youth in nature-based activities and attract first-time visitors to public lands. The agency manages 193 million acres of public land, provides assistance to state and private landowners, and maintains the largest forestry research organization in the world.
National signature events will take place at locations listed below and were selected based on impressive partnership initiatives generating a large array of innovative and interactive activities and a significant number of expected participants:
- Kingman Island in Washington, D.C.
- Denver City Park in Denver, Colo.
- National Children’s Forest in San Bernardino, Calif.
- Minnesota Zoo in Apple Valley, Minn.
- Canyon Rim Park in Salt Lake City, Utah
- Water Resources Education Center in Vancouver, Wash.
For a listing of all events, visit: http://www.nationalgetoutdoorsday.org/locations/. For more information on local activities, contact your nearest Forest Service location.