Colorado Parks and Wildlife, in partnership with the Colorado Department of Education and Colorado State Library announced the expansion of the Check Out Colorado State Parks program to 287 libraries statewide, including the Kiowa County Public Library in Eads, with a proclamation read by Lieutenant Governor Donna Lynne today at the Denver Central Library.
Check Out Colorado State Parks Program is an initiative offering residents the ability to check out a hang-tag park pass from their local library for entrance into any of Colorado's 42 state parks.
"An adventure backpack, filled with park information and educational activities goes with the pass," said Bob Randall, Department of Natural Resources Executive Director. "It's everything you need to explore and enjoy Colorado's parks on your own or with friends and family."
The program provided each participating library with two park passes and two adventure backpacks. The pass and backpack can be checked out for up to seven days.
"We encourage all Coloradans to explore and learn through their libraries," said Colorado State Library Development Director, Sharon Morris. "This pass and backpack program gives residents the opportunity to literally "check out Colorado State Parks" and discover the wildlife and beauty of our state."
The success of the pilot partnership and now the expansion of the program showcases Colorado's quality state parks system and improves accessibility, goals common to both CPW and the Colorado State Library.
"We are excited to partner with another state agency in a way that enhances the goals of both agencies," adds Morris.
Based on annual visits of participating libraries, the goal is within reach.
The estimated exposure, based on annual visits to the participating libraries, exceeds 34 million visitors annually. Libraries will provide quarterly reports based on user feedback to CPW to identify the usage and patron experience of the Check Out Colorado State Parks program at each location.
For more information go to http://cpw.state.co.us/Pages/LibraryBackpack.aspx and http://www.cde.state.co.us/cdelib/checkoutcostateparks. Users are also encouraged to post pictures to Instagram and Twitter: #CheckOutColorado.