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Summer of Learning

Summer of Learning

Posted in: Education, Travel on June 7, 2019.

Knowledge is Power

There’s a lot to know about Southern Utah, from it’s geology to it’s history, it’s a pretty fascinating place. And since we at the Lodge at Red River Ranch are always excited to share local educational opportunities, we thought we’d let you know about a couple of ways you can boost your knowledge of Southern Utah. These are all sponsored by the national park service, and are happening in your favorite national parks. Which makes learning on vacation fun and convenient. Check them out:

A view of the Capitol Reef visitor center with red cliffs behind it

Photo of the Visitor Center by Fran West via franwest.com

Capitol Reef Talks

This summer, Capitol Reef is hosting a series of talks. Some are presented everyday, and some run from Wednesday to Saturday. The Talks are all short, about 30 minutes each, but they are pretty informative. Plus they give you a chance to ask the rangers any questions that you might have. They are all presented free of charge. Here’s a schedule of events, in case you wanna stop by.

Daily Talks:

  • Geology Talk – 10am in the Visitor Center.
  • Archeology Talk – 3pm at the Petroglyph Panel.
  • Evening Program – 7.30pm at the Campgrounds (this one is a longer talk, about two and a half hours).

Wednesday-Saturday Talks:

  • Nature Talk – 11am at the Ripple Rock Nature Center.
  • Junior Geologist – 2pm at the Ripple Rock Nature Center.

The poster for the Bryce Canyon Astronomy Festival

Official Poster for the BCAF via nps.gov

Bryce Canyon Astronomy Festival

The Bryce Canyon Astronomy Festival (BCAF) is an annual event hosted in the park for amateur stargazers. And this year the festival is celebrating its 50th anniversary! Astronomy Rangers, and local and national Astronomical Societies will be in attendance, so you can bet there will be plenty to learn. After all, the Keynote Speaker will be Dr. Amber Straughn, Associate Director of Astrophysics Science at NASA. There’s a lot going on, so we haven’t included the schedule of events her, but if you want more info head over here.

The Zion shuttle waits at a bus stop

Photo of the Zion Shuttle via visitgeorge.com

Zion Ranger Programs

Zion gets the lion’s share of Southern Utah’s annual visitors, so it likes to host a bunch of ranger-led programs during the summer. These are usually very well attended, and some even require you to make a reservation. But they are really awesome, so if you’re planning a vacation, plan on scheduling in a few of these programs.

Ranger Tours:

  • Guided Ranger Walk – 8am at the Zion Visitor Center. Explore the Pa’rus Trail along the Virgin River with a ranger.
  • Ride With a Ranger – 9am on the Zion Shuttle. See Zion Canyon through a ranger’s eyes. Reservation required. Tickets are available at the Visitor Center, up to three days prior to departure.
  • Family Walks (Saturdays only) – 10am at the Zion Human History Museum. Every Saturday from now until August 17, you and your family can join a ranger for an hour long walk.

Patio Talks:

  • Patio Talk: Subjects Vary – 11am at the Human History Museum.
  • Patio Talk: Water, Rocks, and Time – 2pm at the Human History Museum.
  • Patio Talk: Subjects Vary – 4pm at the Human History Museum.

Evening Programs:

  • Zion Lodge Evening Program – 8pm at the Zion Lodge Auditorium.
  • Watchman Evening Program – May through July at 9.15pm. August at 8.45pm. Located at the Watchman Campground Amphitheater.

The More You Know…

Of course these are only some of the cool educational programs happening in Southern Utah’s national parks this summer. So if you want to learn more about what’s going on in your favorite park, check out the nps.gov website. And stay curious!

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