Your Fourth Grader Can Visit More Than 400 National Parks for Free

Your Fourth Grader Can Visit More Than 400 National Parks for Free

Every September the kids are back in school. Football kicks into high gear. Starbucks serves Pumpkin Spice Lattes. And every Fourth Grade student can get an Every Kid Outdoors pass.

Every Kid in a Park Pass Wind Cave
A bison approaches the Wind Cave National Park marker

What is the Every Kid Outdoors Pass?

The National Park Service gives this pass to fourth grade students to encourage kids to see the natural wonders of America’s most treasured places. Kids can learn about the history of our country, or discover geological wonders with the pass. It is a must have for any family wanting to visit one or more of our parks. The pass used to be called Every Kid in a Park, but has since been renamed Every Kid Outdoors.

Every Kid in a Park Pass Mesa Verde
Cliff Palace at Mesa Verde National Park

How We Use Our Card

Last year, our fourth grader signed up for the Every Kid Outdoors pass. The pass allowed our family entry into the more than 400 sites in the National Park Service. We spent the year making memories and learning so much about our country and its natural wonders.

Every Kid in a Park Pass Great Sand Dunes.
Sand Dunes at the National Park rise over 800 feet.

We were able to get into sites like Badlands National Park and Mesa Verde National Park for free. Our family took a cave tour at Wind Cave National Park thanks to the pass. We toured Bent’s Old Fort, sled in the sand at Great Sand Dunes National Park, and climbed into Bandelier’s Ancestral Puebloan ruins for free.

Every Kid in a Park Pass Bent's Old Fort
The American Flag flies high above Bent’s Old Fort outside of La Junta, Colorado

What Park Fees are Covered by the Pass?

While many of the monuments and historical sites in the park service are free year round, most of the larger parks have vehicle entry fees. But, with the Every Kid in a Park pass, your family can see Old Faithful or Half Dome without paying the park fee. Or maybe, like the Backwoods Tourist, you can learn about the history of aviation at the Wright Brothers National Memorial. Many tours also are free, or have a reduced rate for family members.

Every Kid in a Park Pass Bandelier
Our Son Climbing a Ladder to Look at a Cliff Dwelling at Bandelier

How to Apply for the Every Kid in a Park Pass

To get your pass, you’ll need to fill out the form at Every Kids Outdoors. You can take the temporary pass from the website to any national park location to get your official pass. The pass is good from September through next August.

Every Kid in a Park Pass Badlands
The scenic formations in the Badlands make you feel like you are one another planet.

Our kids are now in sixth grade and fourth grade, so we are signing up for a pass for this current year. Plans are under way to use the pass to its fullest. Then, we may stand in awe at the edge of the Grand Canyon, or see a grizzly bear on Denali, or take a swamp tour in the Everglades. Where would you go with an Every Kid is a Park pass?

You Might Also Enjoy:

Our tour of three Western Forts that are part of the National Park Service.

Learn about the Amazing National Parks of South Dakota.

Our guide to two New York National Park Sites — The Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

Every Kid in a Park Pass Pin

All photos and content are by Family Well Traveled and use of photos or content without permission will result in legal action.

4 thoughts on “Your Fourth Grader Can Visit More Than 400 National Parks for Free”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.