WILDERNESS INQUIRY | Virtual Exploration of the Great Outdoors!

Have your students join Mississippi National River & Recreation Area Park Rangers and Wilderness Inquiry Outdoor Leaders on this free virtual adventure along the Mississippi River! During each session, explorers will investigate different topics and notable places along the Mississippi. With curriculum and facilitation developed by the National Park Service, students will leave this adventure with a deeper understanding of the Mighty Mississippi in the Twin Cities.

This is a Zoom-based experience, students will have a chance to be active, solve mysteries about the river and surrounding areas, and challenge themselves to make connections to the Mississippi River, even from a distance.

The program is for youth in grades 5-8. Youth will be given a free Exploration Kit that includes all materials needed to participate in activities. Youth will need an internet connection and a device that connects to the internet. We suggest registering for all four days of this program for the most impactful experience, but it is not required to register for each day in order to participate. The program will be facilitated from 9:00 – 10:30am or 1:00 – 2:30pm covering history and ecology of the Mississippi River.

Here’s how to sign up:

Step 1: Choose your experience from the four different options listed below.
River of Life
Day 1, Ecology at Crosby Farm Regional Park: At Crosby Farm Regional Park, explorers will learn about floodplain forest ecosystems, species adaptation, and how to be a local waterway steward.

Day 2, Ecology at Coldwater Spring: At Coldwater Spring, explorers will learn about prairie ecosystems in Minnesota, and the importance of prairie restoration and conservation.

River of History
Day 1, History at Fort Snelling State Park: At Fort Snelling State Park, explorers will learn about the North American fur trade, and the cultural significance of the Bdote.

Day 2, History at Saint Anthony Falls: At Saint Anthony Falls, explorers will learn about Minnesota geology, waterfall erosion, and the important connections between the Mississippi River and the development of the Twin Cities.

River of Life & History
Day 1, Ecology at Crosby Farm Regional Park

Day 2, Ecology at Coldwater Spring

Day 3, History at Fort Snelling State Park

Day 4, History at Saint Anthony Falls

Choose Your Own Adventure!
Pick and choose what days sound most interesting to you!

Step 2: Determine the dates that best fit your group’s schedule.
This program runs from 9:00 – 10:30am or 1:00 – 2:30pm Monday through Thursday most weeks. Each month, the first and third weeks will be morning sessions and the second and fourth will be afternoon sessions.

Step 3: Register!
You will register for your entire classroom or group at one time for each date you’re interested in. For example, a science class is interested in River of Life. The teacher, or class leader, then chooses two dates from the list below, registers for each date using their contact information on behalf of the class, and then moves forward as the group’s main contact.

Step 4: Confirm details with Wilderness Inquiry.
Wilderness Inquiry’s Youth Programs team will follow up with you to confirm final details like class roster, Exploration Kit pick-up/drop-off, Zoom logistics, and more. If you have any questions, please email [email protected]

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