Children will have the chance to learn about safe, fun ways to stay busy this summer at an event at Fort Christiansvaern Park this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The National Park Service will be recruiting kids for their Summer Reef Ranger and Junior Park Ranger programs and the governor will be looking for volunteers for his Fourth Annual Summer Reading Challenge.
The event will include food, music and booths from various Virgin Island agencies. The Police Department will have a K-9 demonstration at 11 a.m., and the Park Service will offer boat rides and safety demonstrations in the harbor from noon to 2 p.m. The bookmobile will also be on hand to issue library cards and get kids started on their summer reading.
The Summer Reef Ranger program is for children 10-14. The program stresses safe boating practices and includes a snorkel clinic at Buck Island Reef National Monument.
The program runs through late summer and into the first half of the school year.
The Junior Ranger program recruits young people to volunteer at National Park Service sites at Buck Island, Salt River and Christiansted.
To sign up for either program, contact Park Service staff at the event or 773-1460.
The fourth annual Summer Reading Challenge, which began in June, motivates children from kindergarten through eighth grade to read five books of their choice over the summer. Students interested in the challenge can pick up books and tracking sheets at the event.
“Saturday’s event will bring families together in a fun and engaging afternoon of discovery and education,” said. Gov. John P. deJongh Jr. “I encourage all students in grades kindergarten through eighth to spend the day learning about the natural environment and participating in the Summer Reading Challenge.”
The event is sponsored by the National Park Service with support from the V.I. Waste Management Authority, VIPD, Virgin Island Emergency Management Agency, the Department of Health, the V.I. National Guard, St. Croix Rescue, Veterans Administration, U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, U.S. Customs and Border Patrol, and the Department of Planning and Natural Resources.
For additional information about the event, call 773-1460 ext. 244 or visit www.nps.gov/chri.