Arts, Dining & Entertainment

Celebrate 100 years of the National Park Service with special winter programs


Learn to identify tracks of wild animals in a Working Woodlands Workshop at Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park on Feb. 13.

Saturday, Feb. 13 at 10 a.m. — WOODSTOCK — In 2016, the National Park Service celebrates 100 years as an agency dedicated to preserving, protecting, and providing for the enjoyment of public lands. To kick off this anniversary, the national parks of Vermont and New Hampshire are offering a series of free guided winter programs. Snowshoe with the family, learn to identify trees in winter, track wildlife, embark on a GPS quest, or photographically explore the beautiful light and contrast of the winter landscape.  Locally, programs take place at Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park in Woodstock.

“Winter is the ideal season to enjoy an intimate experience in your national parks.” says Chief of Interpretation Stephanie Kyriazis, “Our Working Woodlands Workshops focus on deeper experiences in the Vermont forest, while our guided snowshoe and animal tracking programs highlight the seasonal landscape in both parks.” She adds, “In our centennial year we welcome both our long-time visitors, and invite folks not as familiar with national parks to join us for a walk in the woods. Check out our schedule of programs to find one that’s right for you.”

Most programs involve an easy-to-moderate one to three mile walk or snowshoe tour. Participants should bring a snack, water and snowshoes, and come warmly dressed for the weather. Adult and child snowshoes are available to borrow during all programs at no charge for those who don’t have their own. All programs free except for photography workshop.

This week, Feb. 13, learn the tracks and signs of many common Vermont mammals in Animal Tracking, a Working Woodlands Workshop. Learn how fast the animals are moving, their mood, and even their most recent meals. The Program includes an indoor presentation and then moves outside to track animals. All ages are welcome, though the program is technical. Meet at the Forest Center at Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park. Parking is available at the Billings Farm & Museum parking lot. The program runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Coming up, other winter programs at the parks include: Winter Wildlife Tracking for Junior Rangers Feb. 17; Winter Landscape Photography in collaboration with ArtisTree on Feb. 20; Wildlife Tracking in the Snow on Feb. 27; Winter Animal Habitats – a Working Woodlands Workshop on March 5; Family Snowshoe Adventure on March 6; and Using GPS for Outdoor Adventures – a Working Woodlands Workshop on March 19

For more info or to register for any of these, visit, call 802-457-3368 x 17 or email

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