Family Outdoor Clubs at El Paso County Nature Centers

Parents and Parks Resurrecting Outdoor Playtime for Kids

Quick Facts

  • Grab another family or two to form a Family Outdoor Club (positive peer pressure, plus a good excuse to get together with friends)
  • Nature Bucks save you money on nature educational programs
  • FREE to register, free goodies – what’s not to like!

When was the last time your kids had unstructured playtime outside? Or built a fort in the woods? It’s time to feel the sun shine down on your shoulders again, touch the earth with your fingers and toes, see the smiles of your children, make mud pies with them, and hear the bird chorus singing in the dawn of a new day.

The long-lasting benefits of playing outdoors are healthier and happier children and families who understand and care about the environment. El Paso County Nature Centers invite you to form a Family Outdoor Club and register at Fountain Creek or Bear Creek Nature Centers. A club consists of two or more families who register. This self-paced “No Child Left Inside” initiative is designed to help families encourage each other to get outside to play with their children and to explore their El Paso County Parks.

As a registered Family Outdoor Club, your immediate benefits include:

  • FREE interactive Outdoor Activity Passport to your El Paso County Parks
  • FREE Family Outdoor Club cling sticker for your car window
  • FREE Nature Bucks to spend on programs at Bear Creek or Fountain Creek Nature Centers
  • FREE “No Child Left Inside” t-shirts for the kids.

Recent studies show that outdoor play has decreased by 75% since 1900 and that children spend an average of 6 hours a day connected to something electronic. Every child needs to have free playtime outdoors. Author of Last Child in the Woods, Saving our Children from Nature Deficit Disorder, Richard Louv says, “The woods were my Ritalin. Nature calmed me, focused me, and yet excited my senses.”

Studies also show that children who have plenty of unstructured outside playtime, show less aggression or bullying behavior. When a child explores the uneven surfaces of the woods, and plays on uneven surfaces that do not have equidistant hand and footholds, he/she develops better coordination and decision-making abilities.

Family Outdoor Club chairperson, Barbara Mills had this to say about why they decided to register. “We live in such a beautiful state. Why not be outside together with your friends? Our children need exposure to many good things that they can’t get at a daycare center or a sterile backyard. They need to run outside and create memories.”

We agree! Register your Family Outdoor Club today and get outside!

719-520-6745 or 719-520-6387 or www.elpasocountyparks.com.

 

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