HomeNewsArticle Display

New partnership encourages kids to explore great outdoors

Future anglers pose with their first catch at Beale Air Force Base’s Upper Blackwelder Lake, California. The Air Force recently partnered with the National Park Trust to bring the Buddy Bison Great Outdoors Challenge to military families at several installations. The program encourages children and families to spend less time in front of a screen and more time outdoors. (Courtesy photo)

Future anglers pose with their first catch at Beale Air Force Base’s Upper Blackwelder Lake, Calif. The Air Force recently partnered with the National Park Trust to bring the Buddy Bison Great Outdoors Challenge to military families at several installations. The program encourages children and families to spend less time in front of a screen and more time outdoors. (Courtesy photo)

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas (AFNS) -- The Air Force Services Activity is partnering with the National Park Trust to bring the Buddy Bison Great Outdoors Challenge to military families at installations.

The Buddy Bison program encourages children and families to participate in programs such as camping, canoeing, fishing and hiking while exploring local, state and national parks.

Thanks to funding from the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Military Community and Family Policy, the Air Force is piloting the program at: Moody Air Force Base, Georgia; Hurlburt Field, Florida; Little Rock AFB, Arkansas; Hill AFB, Utah; F.E. Warren AFB, Wyoming; Peterson AFB, Colorado; and the U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado.

The funding allows the Air Force to supply installations with support materials to encourage participation.
“We are excited to partner with the National Park Trust,” said Anthony Alcala, AFSVA’s Child and Youth Programs recreation specialist.

NPT is a national non-profit that “protects national parks and engages kids with all of our country’s public lands and waters,” according to the organization’s website.

“This partnership (with NPT) gives our Air Force families opportunities to explore the great outdoors, strengthen family bonds and have fun while engaging in healthy activities,” said Fernando Brown, AFSVA’s Outdoor Recreation recreation specialist.

Participating installations will host kick-off events for Buddy Bison in the coming weeks.

With the program, children receive a Buddy Bison passport or bingo card to collect stamps at Buddy Bison stops. The stops can be found on an installation and at parks in the community.

“This really is a great opportunity to raise awareness of all the local resources available to Airmen and their families,” said Brown.

Although not every installation will be enrolled in the Buddy Bison program, all can participate in NPT’s Kids to Parks Day, held the third Saturday of May each year. This national day of outdoor play encourages exploring outdoor recreation, learning about science, technology, engineering and math; and embracing park stewardship, according to the NPT’s web site.

Based on the success of the Buddy Bison partnership with the Air Force, it may be expanded to other installations in the future.

For more information on the Buddy Bison Program and Kids to Parks Day, visit https://www.parktrust.org/kids-to-parks-day/. Information about an installation’s Buddy Bison program is available at participating bases’ child and youth programs and outdoor recreation.

Engage

Facebook Twitter
RT @DeptofDefense: Defenders, assemble! @usairforce airmen with the 442nd Security Forces Squadron hone their lethality and team-building…
RT @AFResearchLab: Let's celebrate the beginning of Fall and the changing of leaves with this optical microscopy of deformation twins in hi…
RT @624RSG: Are you facing a challenge or dealing with a struggle? People find hope in many different ways, whether it's through family, fa…
RT @AF_Academy: You can’t beat this view. You just can’t. 📸@USAFWingsofBlue https://t.co/JLZcPVp7uP
RT @AirMobilityCmd: #Mobilty #Airmen will move heaven and earth to keep America’s promises to its service members. Check out this story of…
RT @DeptofDefense: Bringing them home. More than 82,000 Americans remain missing from #WWII through the Gulf Wars and other conflicts. The…
RT @USAF_ACC: Today is POW/MIA Day. We will forever remember and honor the lives lost fighting for our country. 🇺🇸 #USAF #POWMIARecognitio
Weren't able to make #ASC19 this year? No problem. We've got the goods. Push ▶️ to hear from first-time attendees a… https://t.co/rEOE1eukwz
Howdy Texans! #AmerciasAirForce is heading to the #lonestarstate on Sept. 27. Hear this #Airman share his love for… https://t.co/BS1ysk4ST3
The return of great power competition requires the U.S. military services to change and adapt quickly. Hear from De… https://t.co/kKiNeHywzp
RT @AirMobilityCmd: The four fans of freedom are blowing strong as a U.S Air Force C-130J Hercules from Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansa…
RT @ActingSecAF: Kudos to @AirForceAssoc on #ASC19 👏🏻 What a wonderful professional opportunity for #Airmen & industry to expand our compe…
.@ACC_Commander designates the 16th Air Force as a new information warfare numbered #AirForce at #ASC19. As… https://t.co/LMiMJ3rWNO
RT @AstroHague: Thank you to the Airmen across the globe who make the human exploration of space possible. Wishing the @usairforce a happy…
RT @Hanscom_AFB: “The @usairforce is leading the charge across @DeptofDefense. No one else in #government has as much ... of this software…
RT @PACAF: Commanders from Australia, Indonesia, Republic of Korea, Philippines, Thailand and the U.S. met for the 2019 Logistics and Safet…
To all those who helped establish the long blue line past, present and future, we honor you and we remember with th… https://t.co/teymF7proy
#ASC19: "We’re all in this together trying to make your service to country the best experience on the planet. We w… https://t.co/rdbCDBJr2c