5th-grade students across country now have free entrance to national parks, wildlife refuges

Tourists walk past rock formations along the Giant Logs Trail in the Petrified Forest National Park, Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020, near Holbrook, Ariz. Photo: AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin. Tourists walk past rock formations along the Giant Logs Trail in the Petrified Forest National Park, Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020, near Holbrook, Ariz.

Tommy Wiita
Updated: October 28, 2020 02:52 PM
Created: October 28, 2020 02:42 PM

On Wednesday, United States Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt signed a Secretary's Order that waives entrance fees to national parks, wildlife refuges and other public lands and waters managed by the Department of the Interior for fifth-grade students and their families starting Wednesday and going through Aug. 31, 2021. 

According to a release, American fifth-grade students who may have been unable to make full use of the Every Kid Outdoors Annual Fourth-Grade Pass during the 2019-2020 academic year due to the COVID-19 pandemic will have free access to national parks and other federal lands managed by the department this academic year. 

"The Trump Administration has made expanding public access to America's national parks and public lands a top priority, especially during this year's pandemic," Bernhardt said. "Programming was limited at times for last year's fourth graders through the Every Kid Outdoors program, so we're allowing this year's fifth graders free access to our public lands throughout the 2020-2021 academic year. We hope these kids and their families take advantage of the incredible physical and mental benefits of getting outside and visiting a park, refuge or campground near them." 

At this time, nearly all units and locations are currently accessible with many having restored services for the public to enjoy following proper health and safety guidelines. 


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