WASHINGTON (May 14, 2021) – Today, U.S. Senators Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) announced the bipartisan resolution that encourages children to get outdoors and promote healthy outdoor recreation by designating May 15, 2021 as National Kids to Parks Day. 

First celebrated by the National Park Trust in 2011, the eleventh annual Kids to Parks Day marks the beginning of a summer-long series of events at state parks countrywide that promote outdoor recreation and active, healthy living. 

“Connecting kids to the outdoors inspires them to become future conservationists and, as the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us, reinforces the added mental and physical health benefits that an active lifestyle can yield,” said Heinrich. “We must devote real resources to expanding opportunities for those in communities who have been historically excluded and ensure we are supporting the next generation of stewards of our air, land, water and wildlife. I encourage New Mexico families to take advantage of Kids to Parks Day and visit our treasured public lands that offer endless opportunities for kids to discover, learn, and play.” 

Senators Heinrich's bipartisan legislation, the Every Kid Outdoors Act, was signed into law in 2019 as part of the broader John D. Dingell Jr. Conservation, Management, and Recreation Act. The Every Kid Outdoors Act provides America's fourth graders and their families free entrance to America's public lands, waters, and historic sites, including national parks – more than 2,000 sites in all. In 2020, Senator Heinrich led a successful effort to have the U.S. Department of the Interior agree to extend 2019-2020 Every Kid Outdoors passes into the 2020-2021 school year given the hurdles that the COVID-19 pandemic presented for students and families wishing to access America’s public lands, waters, and historic sites. 

Recently, Senator Heinrich also welcomed the launch of Outdoor F.U.T.U.R.E., a national outdoor equity initiative created by Black, Indigenous, and leaders of color from states and organizations across the country. The initiative will act as a blueprint for outdoor equity legislation Senator Heinrich plans to introduce soon. 

Joining Senator Heinrich in introducing the resolution are U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Susan Collins (R-Maine,) and Richard Burr (R-N.C.). 

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