IDPR News & Updates Keeping you in the know

Inaugural Sailing Camp at Lucky Peak

A partnership between Boise Parks and Recreation, Lucky Peak, and the Southern Idaho Sailing Outreach (SISO) resulted in a "first-of-its-kind" sailing camp for children. The pilot program was completed in August and they are looking forward to expanding the program next year. To read the full article, click here.


Bioblitz Kicks Off - Natural Resource Assessment

At IDPR, we are conducting Natural Resource Assessments in the parks. The information gathered on the flora and fauna of the parks is being input to an Access database that will be available to park managers and HQ staff to help inform interpretive efforts, natural resource management, and project development planning. A Bioblitz is one part of the assessment process. For more information about the Natural Resource Assessment process, contact the Experience/Education Coordinator, Jamie Little.

Below are some of the images gathered from the Lake Cascade State Park Bioblitz.

Natural Resource Assessment Goals

  1. Gather appropriate information to aid in planning and interpretation of park resources.
  2. Utilize information already available from other agencies as possible.
  3. Utilize volunteers/partners from other agencies and non-profits.
  4. Create a database that references other successful examples.
Pictured: Short-eared Owl, Cliff Swallow nesting colony, Lark Sparrow, and American White Pelicans

Three Island Crossing Bioblitz

A Bioblitz was also conducted at Three Island Crossing State Park this year. Some of the resulting images can be found below.

**Note: The images in the grids above and below are not the only images captured during the Bioblitz**
Pictured: Honey Bee on Balsam Root, Cedar Waxwing, Western Grebes, Balsam Root, and Penstemon.

Hundreds of Fifth Graders Attend Environmental Awareness Days at Hells Gate State Park

Hells Gate State Park hosted the 2019 Environmental Awareness Days on May 17 and 18. This event was aimed at teaching school-age children about the importance of environmental education and how to protect Idaho's many natural resources. Approximately 650 fifth-grade students attended from eighteen local elementary schools. Read full article here.

"Girl Scouts Love State Parks" was a huge success

Idaho State Parks played a role in a national event called "Girl Scouts Love State Parks." The event, which took place over the course of a weekend (July 13 & 14), hosted tens of thousands of girl scouts and their families at state parks across the nation. During the weekend, troops had the opportunity to earn special badges and practice their wilderness and conservation skills. This year, four Idaho State Parks participated in the event. While it was not open to the public, each park reached their maximum amount of girl scouts and their families who attended.

Brief event descriptions for some of the participating parks can be found below.

History of the Girl Scouts

The first ever Girl Scout troop was organized in 1912 by Juliette Gordon "Daisy" Low. In the midst of the Progressive Era--a time where social activism and politic reform ran across the U.S.--Low wanted to create a platform that inspired girls to embrace their individuality, intellect, and foster a love for education and the great outdoors.

In the early 1900s, the fight for gender equality raged on. Decades before the Equal Pay Act, women were often limited in their career paths and educational opportunities. In fact, ten years before the Act was officially signed into law, Girl Scouts were earning badges based entirely around exploring various career opportunities, such as radio and televsion.

Today, Girl Scouts of America boasts more than 2.5 million Girl Scouts spanning across 92 different countries. And that number is growing every day.

More than a century later, Low's vision for the Girl Scouts runs strong, continuing to inspire girls across the globe. A love for education, exploration, and a strong sense of adventure is what binds these troops together. And we couldn't be more proud to support their mission!


Girl Scouts Love State Parks Events Across Idaho

Ponderosa State Park - Girl Scouts of all ages and their families are invited to join us for “Girl Scouts Love State Parks Day” at Ponderosa State Park in McCall, ID! Let the adventure begin at the Payette Children’s Forest event where you will have the opportunity to explore and learn all about things in the outdoors. Swing by the Girl Scout booth to learn all about tin foil cooking over coals! There is a $5 fee to enter the park.

Castle Rocks State Park - Girl Scouts of all ages and their families are invited to join us for “Girl Scouts Love State Parks Day” at Castle Rocks State Park located in Almo, ID! The adventure begins by meet at the City of Rocks Visitor Center where Park Rangers will guide girls on how to fish in the Castle Rocks Pond or go on an interpretive trail hike on the California Trail. No youth fishing license required. Adults that would like to fish must supply their own equipment and license.

Lucky Peak State Park - Girls will have the opportunity to explore and learn all about things in the outdoors at Lucky Peak State Park. Everyone is welcome and girls wearing their uniform will receive FREE park entrance. After dark (10 pm), join us again in the park for the ultimate astronomy experience and yummy s'mores! Participants will have the opportunity to earn their astronomy badge. This is open to everyone in the family. The legacy of Girl Scouts and the outdoors is profound. Studies show that 71 percent of girl members ages 8–14 tried their first outdoor activity through the organization and half would not have had access to outdoor activities and programming if not for Girl Scouts. GSUSA’s cutting-edge environmental conservation; camping; and outdoor science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) programming is rooted in a passion for adventure and healthy risk-taking combined with taking action to protect the environment for present and future generations.

Farragut State Park - The Girl Scouts attending the event at Farragut State Park will be participating in a variety of education stations led by both park staff and Girl Scout Leaders. Station topics include survival skills, recreation, camp cooking, and a guided hike leading up to the famed Scouting Friendship Poles.

Castle Rocks

And of course that's not all...

Between all of our parks and recreation programs, there is always something exciting to share!

Terri Bryant of Ponderosa State Park was awarded "Sponsor of the Year" for the Idaho Master Naturalist Program. She is being commended for her tireless work and promotion of the Idaho Master Natural Chapter which has helped grow and shape the chapter since her sponsorship in 2012. Congratulations to Terri!

Gavin Hughes, IDPR North Region Utility Craftsman, has been working diligently on the Experience Idaho Loaner Backpack stands for more than 20 parks across the state. Each stand is customized to fit the many intricate nuances of each park and the programming. Gavin has been involved in woodworking since he was a child, but picked up the carving saw about 10 years ago. Gavin is grateful for the creative freedom given to him and the opportunity to have a project that he is so passionate about. To see more of Gavin's work, visit his website.

Pictured: Bruce the Moose for Round Lake; the stand for Old Mission (pictured in top right and bottom right), and a series of custom stands for other parks: Walcott, Bruneau, Harriman, Three Island, and Castle Rocks.

Both Anna Canning and Director David Langhorst were recognized at Governor Little's Red Tape Reduction Appreciation and Awards Ceremony for the amount of work that they have put in to fulfill the Governor's goal for a significant decrease in Idaho regulations.


Outdoor Recreation Analyst, Jeff Cook, is currently developing a Snowmobile Trails Web Mapping Application that he anticipates will be out this winter. The application will show when some of the marked trails were groomed and will be used by groomers to share their information. It can then be easily relayed to the public. This concept has been requested for a while from our Nordic trail recreationalists and will likely be highly revered!

And we would be remiss if we didn't mention that the Branded Brochures are officially printed! Once the wooden stands are made, every park will receive every other park's brochure. Which means: agency-wide cross-promotion at every park location!

If you are interested in seeing something specific in the next Friends of Idaho State Parks Newsletter, please feel free to reach out to Chelsea Chambers at Chelsea.Chambers@idpr.idaho.gov.

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