In celebration of National Park Week, 25 people tent camped for the first time as part of the Homestead New Campers Challenge.
This is a new partnership with Scheels and Coleman and partially funded through a National Park Foundation grant. Families applied for the event and five families were selected based on essays on why they wanted to camp. Scheels and Coleman donated five large tents and sleeping bags to the families.
Several other partners were involved – Nebraska Game and Parks came to teach them about other camping and recreation opportunities; a Scheels camping expert gave a program on the dos and don’ts of camping; the Prairie Astronomy Club brought out their large telescopes so everyone could see the rings of Saturn, the moons of Jupiter, and a distant nebula.
The goal of this event was to introduce people to the National Park Service, nature and camping as well as give them the resources and knowledge to continue adventures with their families.
All of the campers reported having a great time. One family thanked the park staff for providing them an opportunity to participate in a family activity that even their teenager had fun doing. Most of the families included young teens.
This event connects to C2A #5 Connect Citizens to the Outdoors because four of the five families were new to visiting Homestead National Monument of America.