School Year Programming

GARNA’s Youth Ecological Literacy Program (YELP) brings teachers, natural resource agency representatives, and volunteers together to provide science-based activities through school field trips, internships, enrichment programs and summer camps. in 2017, YELP impacted over 1000 students!

The YELP program also reaches young people outside of school at after school programs, on Fridays in the Salida district, and on the weekends.

GARNA’s goal is to expand the program to additional school districts and communities and is currently seeking funding to do so.

Winter/Spring 2018 Extra-Curricular and Enrichment Programs

GARNA Friday Enrichment – in partnership with Salida Recreation Department

Friday, February 16, 2018
Friday, February 23, 2018

Students will use the outdoor classroom and learn about wildlife and wildlife habitat through crafts, journaling and games. Participants must register through Salida Rec, 539-6738.

Natural Kids Series at Boys and Girls Clubs of Chaffee County

See our calendar for more information.

GARNA and Boys & Girls Club of Chaffee County are working together to offer Natural Kids, a series of nature-based experiential learning sessions.  Natural Kids is held at the Boys & Girls Clubs in both Salida and Buena Vista.

Stream Explorers – GARNA/Collegiate Peaks Anglers Chapter of Trout Unlimited

Salida Stream Explorers Camp – 4 Consecutive Fridays – April 27, May 4, May 11 and May 18
Buena Vista Stream Explorers Camp  –  Dates TBD in June! 

GARNA and Collegiate Peaks Anglers Chapter of Trout Unlimited invites middle school students to “experience the natural world” as part of its FREE Stream Explorers program.  In addition to learning about river creatures and doing aquatic experiments with fish and shrimp, students will learn to tie flies, learn basic fly casting, and go fishing with flies they tied themselves. At the first session, students will don borrowed wading gear and head into the Arkansas River. They will use nets to collect insects from under rocks and on sticks in the river. After examining what they find, students will record data, utilize microscopes, discuss and store samples for the next week.  The second session will focus on science, and students will use the samples of the organisms they collected in a variety of experiments to learn whether the critters like warm or cold, dark or light and the effects of gravity. At the third session, students will learn basic fly tying techniques, and at the final session they will put their flies to the test after practicing some basic casting. Students who attend all four sessions will receive a FREE youth membership to Trout Unlimited. No experience is necessary.

2018 Spring Field Trips and Service Days

Date TBD –  (Salida) Longfellow Elementary 3rd Grade Service Trip – O’Haver Lake and Campground
Thursday, May 3  – Salida Middle School 6th Grade Service Trip – Monarch Spur Trail
May 15 – Leadville Intermediate School Field Work

May 22 and 23 – (Buena Vista) McGinnis Middle School Conservation Camp

Read more about great past field trips on our news page.


3rd graders learn from a CO Parks & Wildlife instructor

3rd graders learn from a CO Parks & Wildlife instructor

6th graders work on a trail restoration project

6th graders work on a trail restoration project

10th graders experience multi-use examples from BLM instructors

10th graders experience multi-use examples from BLM instructors


GARNA is the Arkansas River Valley’s only local broadly focused conservation and educational institution with non-profit status. GARNA is supported by membership fees…will you join us?

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