James River Water Levels

Westham Gauge
Gauge Height: 8.03'
Flow: 17300 cfps

Trail Conditions: Richmond


Todays Tides: Richmond Locks

High Tide: 2:00am
Low Tide: 9:00am

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Visit a Virginia State Park May 16 and Return for Free

Andy Thompson

May 5, 2015 10:40am

I’m a huge fan of the Virginia State Park system, so I thought it worth passing this along. If you’re a regular park-goer, here’s an opportunity to save some cash. If you’ve never been to a Va. State Park — like Pocahontas SP and Powhatan SP, locally — this is a great chance for you and your kids to discover all they have to offer.

As part of National Kids to Parks Day, May 16, Virginia State Parks will offer special kid-friendly activities, and visitors will receive a coupon for complimentary parking later in the year.

Swift Creek Lake at Pocahontas State Park.

Swift Creek Lake at Pocahontas State Park.

“Virginia State Parks offer numerous activities and programs that promote our youth becoming engaged and active in the outdoors,” State Parks Director Craig Seaver said. “This engagement promotes a healthy and creative lifestyle for years to come.”

The fifth annual National Kids to Parks Day is sponsored by the National Parks Trust. The event is designed to foster an appreciation for nature and public lands and to encourage families to get outdoors and lead a more active lifestyle.

A list of park programs can be found here: http://bit.ly/kidstoparks2015. Many activities are great for first-time visitors and offer basic instruction in popular outdoor activities.

For example, fishing programs will be offered at Claytor Lake, False Cape, Mason Neck, Staunton River and Twin Lakes state parks to help young people and novices learn about fishing. Other parks will offer a day full of activities. Douthat State Park features an annual car show. Sky Meadows is introducing two new Junior Ranger activity books – Junior Historian and Junior Farmer – in addition to the Junior Naturalist.

This is one of two canoe/kayak launches at Powhatan State Park in Powhatan County. Credit: DCR

This is one of two canoe/kayak launches at Powhatan State Park in Powhatan County. Credit: DCR

Powhatan, Sky Meadows and York River will offer star gazing or astronomy programs. Caledon and Twin Lakes have an Owl Prowl scheduled.

National Kids to Parks Day also kicks off the Get Outdoors! Challenge.

Visit five different Virginia State Parks between May 16 and June 30, 2015, to earn an Annual Naturally Yours Passport Plus, good for a year of free parking and discounts. Click here for complete details on the challenge, including rules.

About Andy Thompson

I was the Outdoors Columnist at the Times-Dispatch from 2007 to 2013, writing twice a week about mountain biking, fishing, hunting, paddling and much more. I live a 1/4 mile from the James River, close enough to see bald eagles soaring over my house on their way to find a meal. Pretty cool, eh?