The Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area (AHRA) is gearing up for a fun summer of youth programs for ages 3-17. There’s TOTS on Tuesdays for youngsters ages walking to 4 years old; Junior Rangers for ages 5-11 and Hanging Out-Outdoors, ages 12-17.

“Hanging Out-Outdoors” offers fun opportunities for teens to participate in recreational sports and activities offered throughout the upper Arkansas River Valley. The first program, Horseback Riding in the Mountains, is Saturday, June 9. Participants will meet at the AHRA Visitor Center in Salida on Saturday morning and return in the early afternoon. Space is limited and a small fee is charged, so please call 719-539-7289 to make a reservation by noon on Friday, June 8. AHRA Naturalist, Claire Davis, encourages interested participants to sign up early for this first “Hanging Out” event of 2012, since it was very popular last year. Parental or guardian permission is required.

The TOTS on Tuesday programs will be held this summer, starting June 12, from 10:30-11:30 a.m. at Riverside Park in Salida. Please check the ARHA website calendar for the other dates. The Junior Ranger programs will be held from 10-11:30 a.m. on Wednesday at Riverside Park in Salida and 10-11:30 a.m. on Thursday at the Community Center in Buena Vista. These programs are free and pre-registration is not required.

The AHRA also needs VOLUNTEERS to assist with their youth programs and other projects and events. Some experience with young children may be necessary. An open house for prospective volunteers is planned on June 12 from 1-3 p.m. at the AHRA Visitor Center, 307 W. Sackett Ave. (the corner of G and Sackett) in downtown Salida. The public is invited to stop by for refreshments and learn how to help while having a good time too along the river at the AHRA. Volunteers earn a Colorado State Parks Annual Volunteer Pass after 48 hours of service, which is valid at all Colorado State Parks for 365 days of fun.

Please contact Claire Davis at 719-539-7289 for information on AHRA’s youth and volunteer programs and activities.

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