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Get This Military Kids Park Date On Your Calendar Now

Park Ranger Holly Myers teaches campers water safety at Black Butte Lake, California. (U.S. Army/Chris Graygarcia)
Park Ranger Holly Myers teaches campers water safety at Black Butte Lake, California. (U.S. Army/Chris Graygarcia)

A new partnership between Blue Star Families and the National Park Trust (NTP), and a second partnership between NTP and the Air Force is looking to help military kids get outside with some neat perks on the side.

It's no secret that we're really, really into National Parks here at SpouseBuzz. But even if you don't have a National Park nearby, this program could be for you.

Aimed to coincide with Kids to Parks Day, which this year falls on May 19, the Blue Star Families program will be at 17 locations nationwide.

Although the list of locations isn't yet online, Blue Star Families officials told Military.com that there will be multiple events in the Washington, D.C. region, multiple events in Alaska, three events in New York, two events in both California and Florida, and events in New Mexico, North Carolina, Texas and near Fort Campbell, Kentucky. Some of the events will be at or near a National Park, while others will focus on spending time outdoors in local parks or recreation areas. (My family will personally be attending one of those Blue Star Families events. Maybe we'll see you there?)

So what's special about these events? Thanks to the NPT sponsorship through their Buddy Bison program, each attending gets studded bison mascot to take home and some other fun swag. The funding also will let those putting on the events provide other items, like lunch.

You should check with the event near you for more information, as well as dates and location specifics. On top of the Blue Star Families program, the Air Force is also piloting their own Buddy Bison program with NPT. That version will be at Moody Air Force Base, Georgia; Hurlburt Field, Florida; Little Rock AFB, Arkansas; Hill AFB, Utah; F.E. Warren AFB, Wyoming; Peterson AFB, Colorado; and the U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado. It's not clear yet what the Air Force's program looks like, exactly, but anything that makes nature more accessible is a win in my book.

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