CHEYENNE — Join us in celebration of the nation’s largest single-day volunteer event for public lands! Help restore, improve, and enjoy Wyoming State Parks and Historic Sites across the state by attending an upcoming National Public Lands Day event in your area.
Established in 1994 and held annually on the fourth Saturday in September, National Public Lands Day (NPLD) is a nationwide initiative led by the National Environmental Education Foundation.
This annual celebration brings out hundreds of thousands of volunteers to help restore and improve public lands around the country. NPLD is also a “Fee-Free Day”—one of only five days a year when entrance fees are waived at national parks and other public lands.
This year, NPLD will celebrate its 29th year with the theme Giving Back Together.
“During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, we saw an increase in outdoor recreation across the country as folks flocked to the great outdoors to escape the confines of their homes and for the pure enjoyment of being outside,” states Laurel Thompson, Outreach Coordinator for Wyoming Outdoor Recreation. “Wyoming State Parks and Historic Sites also saw this increase in visitation, and what better way to return the favor to the outdoor spaces we hold so dear than to participate in an event geared towards the improvement, restoration, and vitality of our public lands?”
In honor of this annual celebration, day-use and entrance fees will be waived at all Wyoming State Parks and Historic Sites on September 24.
This year, 14 Wyoming State Parks and Historic Sites will also host National Public Lands Day events from trail improvement projects, guided hikes, conservation walks, park clean-ups and more. Event details for participating sites are as follows:
· Bear River State Park – Sept. 24 10AM Bike Your Park & 1PM Trail Improvement Project, meet at Rendezvous Group Area. Take a ride around the park at 10AM then help bring life back to an abandoned trail at 1PM. Supplies provided. For more information, please contact 307-789-6547.
· Boysen State Park – Sept. 1-24 Month-long Park Clean-up & Virtual Stewardship Challenge. Pick up litter anywhere in the park and take a photo of you in action. Comment the photo on Boysen’s NPLD Facebook post and be entered to win a local gift card. For more information, please contact 307-876-2796.
· Buffalo Bill State Park – Sept. 24 8AM Park Clean-up, meet at Park Office. Help pick up litter & debris in the park’s no fee areas. Map & supplies provided. For more information, please contact 307-587-9227.
· Curt Gowdy State Park – Sept. 24 9AM-12PM Park Clean-up & 1PM-2PM Guided Hike, meet at Camp Russell Day Use Shelter. Help pick up litter in your assigned area. Then, enjoy your efforts at 1PM for a guided hike. Supplies provided. For more information, please contact 307-632-7946.
· Edness K. Wilkins State Park – Sept. 24 10AM-12PM Conservation Walk, meet at Mountain View Shelter. Enjoy a tour of the park while discussing past riparian restoration work and future conservation projects. For more information, please contact 307-577-5150.
· Fort Bridger State Historic Site – Sept. 24 9AM Historic Fence Restoration Project, meet at Main Parking Lot. Help remove existing fence to make room for the restored historic fence. Gloves will be provided. For more information, please contact 307-782-3842.
· Historic Governor’s Mansion – Sept. 24 10AM-11AM Community Garden Clean-up, meet at Front Door of Mansion. Help clean up the grounds and clear out the garden beds of the mansion. Supplies provided. For more information, please contact 307-777-7878.
· Hot Springs State Park – Oct. 1 9AM-1PM How to Build a Trail & Guided Tour, meet at Hot Springs County Recreation Armory. Head into the field to explore different trail building techniques & existing trails in the area. Lunch provided. For more information, please contact 307-864-2176.
· Keyhole State Park – Sept. 24 10AM-12PM Nature Hike & Park Clean-up, meet at Big Kahuna in Coulter Bay. Enjoy a 30 minute guided, nature hike then assist in picking up litter & cleaning out fire pits. Water provided. For more information, please contact 307-756-3596.
· Medicine Lodge State Archaeological Site – Sept. 24 10AM-12PM Park Clean-up & Historic Cabin Preservation, meet at Red Barn. Clean up litter around the park or assist in removing damaged floors in historic cabin. Supplies provided. For more information, please contact 307-469-2234.
· Seminoe State Park – Sept. 24 10AM Prescribed Burn & Fire Training, meet at South Red Hills Campground Kiosk. Join the Carbon County Fire Department for a prescribed burn & training opportunity. Weather permitting. For more information, please contact 307-320-3013.
· South Pass City State Historic Site – Sept. 24 Run the Red Desert 5AM 100K, 8AM 50K & 10AM Half-marathon, meet at South Pass City. Run the Red is Wyoming’s annual premier trail running event. 5AM 100K, 8AM 50K & 10AM Half-marathon. For more information & registration, please visit runthereddesert.com or call 307-332-3684.
· Trail End State Historic Site – Sept. 22 12PM – Sept. 25 3PM Plein Air in the Parks, meet at Trail End. This annual competition is open to artists of all ages & gives guests the opportunity to watch artists in action. For more information & registration, please visit TrailEndPleinAir.eventbrite.com or call 307-674-4589.
· Wyoming Territorial Prison – Sept. 24 10AM-11AM Family Clean-up & Nature Walk, meet at lawn near Visitor Center & Warden’s Cabin. Help clean up behind the main prison area & enjoy a stroll on the Nature Trail. Supplies provided. For more information, please contact 307-745-6161.
Participants are encouraged to “know before you go” and to prepare for weather conditions. Supplies will be provided at most locations; however, participants are also encouraged to bring their own gloves where applicable and water and snacks.
Learn more about each event by finding individual parks and sites on Facebook. We hope to see you all in celebration of National Public Lands Day!