Ranger Valerie Morgan welcomed kids and adults of all ages to âGo fly a kite!â in the crisp central New York air at Fort Stanwix National Monument on October 5th. The event brought local people out in the open air to enjoy the weather and the wonders of nature and to spend some time laughing and running on the fortâs lawn.
The idea for the program comes after superintendent Debbie Conway challenged the staff to get local children outside in response to the âTake a Child Outsideâ program, as well as the Centennial Initiative goals. Getting local people to enjoy their national park also as a place to recreate and to enjoy green space in an urban setting was the goal. Central New York enjoys a long winter with much âlake effectâ snow, so encouraging children and parents to enjoy all seasons was also Morganâs motivation.
Fort Stanwix is a historical place and a national monument. The history of kites goes back centuries, and the 18th century is no exception, with Benjamin Franklinâs famous experiments with electricity using kites. Information on Dr. Franklinâs kites and instructions on how he made them were made available in the parkâs visitor center for participants to take with them along with a handout on making a paper bag kite at home to encourage recycling.
Participants had the opportunity to make their own kite using pre-packaged kits in the Marinus Willett Visitor Center, and then to enjoy the open space free of telephone and electrical lines on the fort lawn in the center of the city of Rome. Approximately 20 people attended under the partly sunny skies on Sunday afternoon and everyone had their kites sailing.
For more information on the âTake a Child Outsideâ program and program ideas, visit http://takeachildoutside.org. For more information on Fort Stanwix National Monumentâs âGo Fly a Kite Programâ and materials, contact ranger Valerie Morgan at (315) 336-4448 or email firstname.lastname@example.org .