Crowder Public Programs

Programmer walks with children during a guided hike on the parks paved trails

Crowder County Park offers programs covering history, nature and recreational topics. Public programs are open for registration to the general public.

In-person programs are back! Find them below to register! 

Public Programs

Register for Programs

You may register for several of Crowder’s upcoming programs or camps online.

Download and print our January-March 2022 program quarterly here.

Virtual Programs

programmer explains a display with children under wooden shelter

For all ages; FREE. Registration required for all virtual programs. A zoom link will be sent out to all registered participants a day before the program start date.

Family Feature: Fantastic Fossils: Sunday, January 16, 2-3:00 p.m.

Fossils tell scientists how animals and plants lived a long time ago. Join us as we become Junior Paleontologists! Learn all about the rock cycle, discover in which ways rock fossils form, and help us with some fun virtual activities.

Crowder by Night: Predators and Prey: Friday, February 4, 3-4:00 p.m.

Predators adapt to catch their prey and the hunted adapt ways to avoid being eaten. This balance between predators and their prey is essential to a healthy ecosystem. We will look at many predator-prey relationships, the food chain, skulls and teeth of mammals, and do some interactive activities to test our knowledge. 

Nature Families: Silly Salamanders: Wednesday, March 23, 11 a.m.- Noon

As spring arrives, so do salamanders, frogs, and other amphibians. Learn the unique adaptations of a salamander, play a life cycle game, and join us for a meet and greet with a live amphibian. 

 

Family Features

Children play with nature activities under wooden shelter

In-person programs (with restrictions): For all ages. Registration is required for everyone (All adults, children + siblings), and children must have adult accompaniment. No unregistered participants will be allowed into the program. Meet at the Heron Shelter, and we ask that you and your family please arrive ten minutes early for check-in and COVID-19 rules.

Happy Valentine’s Day Mother Nature: Sunday, February 13, 2-3:00 p.m.

Did you give a valentine to Mother Nature this year? Join us as we celebrate a day of love and kindness at the park! Learn all about animal couples (and their strange courtship behaviors) and their families, read a fun story, and make some fun crafts! We’ll be making a few homemade valentines presents for our feathered friends including a nesting ball and a bird feeder, and creating a card from natural objects to give to a special someone.

Magical Habitats: Sunday, March 13, 2-3:00 p.m.

Nature is full of magic! Learn what a habitat is and discover a few animals that call the park home. Then explore the enchanted side of the woods, build a fairy home, and learn neat ways to navigate through the woods using the nature around you!

Crowder by Night

programmer and children stand around firepit during night program

In-person programs (with restrictions): For all ages. Registration is required for everyone (All adults, children + siblings), and children must have adult accompaniment. No unregistered participants will be allowed into the program. Meet at the Heron Shelter, and we ask that you and your family please arrive ten minutes early for check-in and COVID-19 rules.

Busy Beavers: Wednesday, January 26, 11 a.m.- Noon

Did you know that beavers are actually large rodents? Join us at the park and discover the parts of a beaver and what they like to eat. Build a beaver dam, test your knowledge in a round of trivia, and take home a fun beaver craft!

Squirrely Squirrels: Wednesday, February 23, 11 a.m.-Noon

Squirrels are so silly! Come learn about these friendly mammals, gather nuts in a fun game, and make a squirrelly craft to take home! Then spy on the live squirrels at Crowder as they jump from tree to tree searching for the perfect nut.

Discover the Park

programmer shows children corn snake while sitting on grass

A Walk in the Woods-Forest Wake Up: Saturday, March 26, 10 a.m.-11:00 a.m.

Take a walk in the woods and discover the animals and plants that call our park home. This month we will be discussing early signs of spring, and looking for critters coming out of their cozy winter homes! Help collect data for our Natural Resources Inventory Database and other citizen science projects. All experience levels are welcome. We can learn together! For all ages. Registration is required for everyone (All adults, children + siblings), and children must have adult accompaniment. No unregistered participants will be allowed into the program. We ask that you and your family please arrive ten minutes early for check-in and COVID-19 rules. Meet at the Park Office.

StoryWalk®

images of storybooks

Crowder is excited to offer you and your families a wonderful interactive StoryWalk® activity within the park!

Join us for this fun self-guided activity. This will be located on the Outer Loop Trail, beginning at the park's Bird Garden, which is immediately on the left as you enter the park, across from the park's office.

This wonderful program combines the joy of reading a story while also getting out and enjoying nature. This hike is around 0.8 miles.

New to StoryWalk® concept? Laminated pages from a children's book are attached to signs, which are installed along an outdoor path. As you stroll down the trail, you're directed to the next page in the story. The StoryWalk® Project was created by Anne Ferguson of Montpelier, Vermont, and developed in collaboration with the Kellogg-Hubbard Library. StoryWalk® is a registered service mark owned by Ms. Ferguson.

January: "You Matter'" by Christian Robinson

February: "The Secret Life of Squirrels: A Love Story" by Nancy Rose

March: "Inch by Inch" by Leo Lionni

Discovery Boxes

boy and girl look at nature activity while sitting on cement

Want to explore the park with the knowledge of staff? Check out a discovery box from the park! Discovery boxes are self-guided lesson plans, intended for use by teachers of small classes or parents who wish to educate children without requesting a formal program through the office. All boxes come complete with hands on lesson plans, equipment, story books, guides and take-home activities!

Discovery boxes can be checked out at the park office. Stop by and sign one out today!

For larger groups, please call ahead to 919-662-2850 to reserve a box.

A complete list of activities and age recommendations can be found here.

Birds: Activities Length 15 minutes +; Recommended Age: 3 years of age +
Summary: Students will learn to identify different bird behaviors and common birds of the park.

Bugs: Activities Length: 30 minutes +; Recommended Age: 3 years of age +
Summary: Students will familiarize themselves with insect life cycles and bugs found at the park.

Crowder’s Critters: Activities Length: 30 minutes +; Recommended Age: 3 years of age +
Summary: Students will familiarize themselves with animals native to the NC Piedmont.

Pond-Go: Activities Length: 15 minutes +; Recommended Age: 3 years of age +
Summary: Students will identify the plants and animals  that live in a pond.

ABC Hike: Activities Length: 30 minutes +; Recommended Age: 3 years of age +
Summary: Students will practice their ABCs on a nature walk and learn about habitats around the world. 

Wetlands: Activities Length: 30 minutes +; Recommended Age: 6 years of age +
Summary: Students will explore a wetland and learn defining characteristics.

Trees of the Park: Activities Length: 15 minutes +; Recommended Age: 3 years of age +
Summary: Students will explore the parts of a tree, life cycle and discover the trees of the park.

Nature Watchers

little boy with hat on looks under microscope under wooden shelter during program

Children discover the natural world through stories, hands-on activities, games, crafts and outdoor exploration. Registration is required. This weekday program is for ages 3–5. Meet at the Upper Pavilion.

No Nature Watcher programs are available at this time. 

Tiny Tots

little girl looks at plastic bugs and insects on tray under wooden shelter

This half-hour weekday program is for children ages 18 months to 3 years old. Children will learn all about nature through hands-on age appropriate discovery stations. Meet at the Upper Pavilion.

No Tiny Tots programs are available at this time.