MUNISING — While many are trying to figure out if they are smarter than a 5th grader, it’s the 4th graders that have caught the attention of the White House.
President Obama recently authorized that every fourth grader receive free access to federal lands and waters with a park certificate.
The program is called “Every Kind In A Park.” As long as you are with a 4th grader who has a pass, all kids under the age of sixteen as well as up to three adults can enter for free as well.
Park Ranger for the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Susan Reece says, “Just answer a question or two, basically are you a 4th grader? What do you like to do in the park and then print out your certificate. For years we have been saying there is a nature deficit in children. More and more they sit in front of the tv, sit in front of video games, just a disconnect with nature and this is a way to try and get them out there.
The “Every Kid in a Park” program gives kids access to four hundred national parks and million of acres of federal lands and waters.
Home school equivalent kids are also eligible.
“Usually kids, once they are out there at that age of 9 or 10 you can usually make a great impression on them. Hopefully that this is something they would like to keep exploring, especially as they reach adulthood. We are counting on future generations to keep our public lands protected for generations to come, so we are starting with fourth graders and we hope to continue the program each year after that,” continued Reece.
The pass has unlimited usage until it expires on August 31st, 2016. To download the pass, click here.