SEBRING — Highlands Hammock cordially invites residents and visitors from communities throughout the greater Heartland and neighboring counties to join the park in celebrating Kids to Parks Day and International Museum Day on May 20.
Kids to Parks Day was created by the National Park Trust to foster stewards for tomorrow. Families participating in this event will join thousands of young people across the country in supporting parks and the stewardship of conservation lands. Ranger Laura McMullen will introduce the Junior Ranger Program and guide children and parents through a booklet presenting a series of core areas including recreation, natural resources, cultural resources and service. Kids will also learn about outdoor safety and the duties of a park ranger.
Families are instructed to meet at the Otter Pavilion in the picnic area at 10 a.m. After the program introduction, children may begin working on an activity. Children who complete the program will receive the booklet and other Junior Ranger items. The program is recommended for youngsters between the ages of seven to 12 years old. Children under seven will need assistance from a parent. All children must be accompanied by an adult. The Junior Ranger Program will conclude around noon. Those planning to attend are advised that they must arrive by 10 a.m.
Families are also extended a special invitation to explore park trails and visit the Civilian Conservation Corps Museum where they may complete the cultural resources activity of the Junior Ranger Program and participate in a CCC ‘History Detective’ Scavenger Hunt. For more information about the Junior Ranger program, visit www.floridastateparks.org/things-to-do/junior-ranger. Park entry fees of $6 per vehicle (up to 8 people) apply. Advance registration is requested. Sign up by calling the Ranger Station at 863-386-6094 or replying via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Another special program is scheduled at 6:30 p.m. in the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Museum. Visitors are invited to join CCC Museum curator David Schmidt in an overview of ‘Florida’s Fabulous WPA Murals.’ This presentation is held in conjunction with International Museum Day, which is officially May 18. In addition to the CCC, Schmidt has conducted extensive research on the Works Progress Administration. Both of these programs were created by President Franklin D. Roosevelt to counter unemployment in the Depression. Florida has a large collection of WPA murals which were created for post offices and other public buildings during the 1930s and early 1940s. Included among those featured are Charles R. Knight’s 1942 painting, ‘Florida Prehistoric Life’ of saber toothed cats and mammoths in a Florida hammock, which hangs in the Sebring Public Library and Lucile Blanch’s 1938 mural, ‘Osceola Holding Council with His Chiefs,’ which is housed in the Ft. Pierce City Hall. Both programs are free. Park entry fees of $6 per vehicle (up to 8 persons) and $4 per single occupant vehicle are waived after 6 p.m. for those attending the WPA mural program.
Highlands Hammock is located at 5931 Hammock Road in Sebring.