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National campout at Natural Tunnel, SW Va. Museum, Wilderness Road, Hungry Mother

Staff Report • Jun 15, 2013 at 5:55 PM

RICHMOND, Va. — The campfire is calling.

Special campouts, camping skills programs and demonstrations will be held at all 35 Virginia State Parks during the National Wildlife Federation’s Great American Backyard Campout on Saturday, June 22.

Four Southwest Virginia parks will be in on the outdoors festivities: Natural Tunnel State Park in Duffield, Wilderness Road State Park in Ewing, Southwest Virginia Museum State Park in Big Stone Gap and Hungry Mother State Park in Marion:

National Great American Backyard Campout, Natural Tunnel State Park, June 22-23Location: The Wilderness Road BlockhouseCome out and live like a settler! Bring the family and your tent and camp out with some of the Daniel Boone Wilderness Trail Association's re-enactors. This is your family's opportunity to camp out at the Blockhouse and experience how life was over 200 years ago. Families will have the opportunity to experience firsthand chores the settlers did around the Blockhouse. Learn how to cook on an open fire, see what the blacksmith is working on, while enjoying stories and music of the time period. Set-up/registration will start at 3 p.m. and end at 4 p.m on Saturday. The program will start at 4 p.m. and will end at noon on Sunday. Cost per family is $25. Pre-registration is required by calling Megan France at (276) 940-1643. Space is limited.Telephone: (276) 940-2674Email: naturaltunnel@dcr.virginia.gov

Great American Backyard Campout - Camping 101, Wilderness Road State Park, June 22Time: 6-9 p.m.Location: Group CampingCamping is a great way to get outdoors and experience nature. This program will give you all the camping 101 basics you need for a safe night of camping. After getting settled in for the evening, enjoy a campfire program with entertainment, a sweet treat and a ranger guided night hike.Telephone: (276) 445-3065Email: WildernessRoad@dcr.virginia.gov

Great American Backyard Campout - Campfire Sing & Marshmallow Roast, Southwest Virginia Museum State Park, June 22Time: 7-9 p.m.Location: Museum GroundsThe museum is celebrating the Great American Backyard Campout with an evening of fire-roasted treats and great regional music around the campfire.Telephone: (276) 523-1322Email: SWVAMuseum@dcr.virginia.gov

Great American Backyard Campout, Hungry Mother State Park, June 22Time: 10 a.m.-8 p.m.Location: Hungry Mother State ParkCamp out with America at Hungry Mother State Park! Special programs highlight the best of the American camping experience. Part of a national event that celebrates the American camping tradition. At 10 a.m., join our local Scout Troops demonstrate setting up camp and some camping basics. (Meet at Parking Lot 3.-Free) At 1 p.m., Camp Cooking (Free). At 3 p.m., Trick Your Stick - customize your very own hiking stick. Sticks and materials provided. Sponsored by the Friends of Hungry Mother State Park. ($3, cash or check only. Meet at the Discovery Center.) At 8 p.m., Welcome Y'all Campfire - Come to the Amphitheater to learn about the park, upcoming activities, sing campfire songs, hear the legend of Hungry Mother, and roast marshmallows! (Free). The scouts will also be available throughout the day to answer your camping questions. Stop by their camp next to Parking Lot 3 to learn more.Telephone: (276) 781-7400Email: hungrymother@dcr.virginia.gov

“State park campgrounds in Virginia and across the country offer families the perfect venue to learn about and experience camping in a safe environment,” Joe Elton, Virginia State Parks director for the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, said in a release. “Just as camping is a gateway to a lifetime of outdoor recreation and family memories, Virginia State Parks are gateways to outdoor activities such as swimming, fishing, biking, hiking and so much more.”

For a state-wide list of Great American Backyard Campout activities, visit the Virginia State Parks Special Events page.

Virginia State Parks are managed by the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. For more information, visit the DCR state parks webpage.


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