Girl Scouts of the Southern Appalachians (GSCSA) and Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) are excited to announce the second annual Girl Scouts Love State Parks weekend Sept. 12–13 for girls to gain important life skills as they explore the great outdoors, which is an integral part of Girl Scouts. All state parks in Tennessee are participating, with select parks hosting special activities for Girl Scouts:
- Field Stations – Seven Islands State Birding Park (Kodak, TN) 9/12/20: Discover nature’s creativity and find art everywhere outdoors while earning a badge.
- Geocaching Hike – New River Trail State Park (Max Meadows, VA) 9/12/20: Learn about geocaching and hiking while earning a badge.
- Paddling – Hungry Mother State Park (Marion, VA) 9/12/20: Learn about the types of paddling, paddling safety, and technique, and then try your hand at Stand-Up Paddle boarding, kayaking, and canoeing on Hungry Mother Lake. You can earn a badge!
- Scavenger Hunt – Seven Islands State Birding Park (Kodak, TN) 9/12/20: Come compete in a troop-against-troop scavenger hunt! Participation certificates will be awarded.
More information and registration for these events can be found on GSCSA’s Activities page. Girl Scouts who participate in any of these events will also get the special Girl Scouts Love State Parks 2020 patch. Girls can also earn this patch by using the Girl Scouts Love State Parks passport to download, complete, and track activities from home. Find more virtual events hosted by state parks online.
Girl Scouts recognizes the importance of exposing girls to the outdoors, especially during a time when families are practicing social distancing and might not be able to spend much time in nature. The Girl Scouts Love State Parks virtual events include opportunities to get outside and engage with nature, safely from home, as well as virtually explore state parks across the country.
In a 2019 Girl Scout Research Institute study, 70 percent of girls who were not already outdoor enthusiasts at the start of the study increased their confidence, interest and commitment to environmental stewardship after engaging in outdoor activities through Girl Scouts; knowing this significance, the organization continues to innovate with virtual events so girls can have fun pursuing their interests and love for the outdoors while building important skills at the same time.
Girls are welcome to join throughout the year. Info: girlscoutcsa.org or 800-474-1912.
Lucy Branam is creative content coordinator for Girl Scouts of the Southern Appalachians.