Inclusive and accessible day of family-friendly recreation and fun in state parks and public lots on Saturday, June 11th
Get Outdoors & Get Together Day events will be held at 21 select locations across New York on Saturday, June 11. The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and the State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (State Parks), in partnership with the Office for People With Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) and the NYS Division of Veterans’ Services, are hosting free and low-cost events to connect people with nature and provide greater access to nature. Get Outdoors & Get Together Day will bring people of all abilities, ages, identities and backgrounds together for fun, healthy activities as part of the state’s initiative to expand user diversity and ensure inclusivity of access to state public lands.
At 21 events across the state, participants are encouraged to discover new skills and enjoy a range of beginner-level outdoor recreation activities such as B. Fishing, nature walks and hikes, bird watching, archery, camping, paddling and more. Each event will highlight ways to enjoy nature safely and sustainably. All locations offer a selection of accessible activities; and the use of adaptive equipment and demonstrations will be offered at many venues, including trail and beach mobility aids, archery support stands, fishing arm braces and more.
New York’s Get Outdoors & Get Together Day coincides with National Get Outdoors Day, an annual event promoting healthy, active outdoor fun.
The need for access to nature and outdoor recreation has never been greater. Childhood obesity has doubled in the last 20 years, and the average American child spends just 30 minutes a day playing unstructured outdoor games and more than seven hours a day in front of an electronic screen. During the COVID-19 pandemic, New Yorkers turned to nature and the public lands to take time out in nature, which is good for physical and mental health. Get Outdoors & Get Together Day events help New Yorkers of all ability levels try healthy outdoor activities.
- Long Island: Hempstead Lake State Park (Nassau County)
- new York: Mount Loretto Unique Area (Richmond County)
- Hudson Valley: Stony Kill Farm Environmental Education Center (Dutchess County)
- Hudson Valley: Long Dock Park (Dutchess County, in partnership with Scenic Hudson)
- Cat Skills: Kenneth L. Wilson Campground (Ulster County)
- Cat Skills: Catskills Visitor Center (Ulster County)
- Cat Skills: North-South Lake Campground (Greene County)
- Capital Region: Five Rivers Environmental Education Center (Albany County)
- Adirondacks: Scaroon Manor Campground (Warren County)
- Western Adirondacks: Forestry Demonstration Area Lowville (Lewis County)
- Central NY: Rogers Environmental Education Center (Chenango County)
- Central NY: In conjunction with ADK Outdoor Expo (Monroe County)
- Western New York: Reinstein Woods Environmental Education Center (Erie County)
All locations offer wheelchair-accessible facilities and activities, including restrooms and select recreation options. For accommodation requests, please contact the events coordinator directly to inquire about the adaptive equipment and activities offered at each location.
Activities at DEC facilities include:
Fishing: The I Fish NY program will offer free catch-and-release fishing courses to all. Find out more about fishing equipment, techniques, regulations, consumption recommendations and good fishing spots. Participants can bring their own equipment, but rods and reels can also be hired.
Campsite 101: Visitors can try their hand at camping basics by pitching a tent on the lawn and learning how to pack for a camping trip. At the end of the day, participants will be prepared for their own outdoor adventure.
Paddle: Participants can learn the basics of this fun, fast-growing sport and try to get out on the water.
Archery: Participants can try to hit the bull’s eye with a bow and arrow and learn important safety tips.
Bird Watching: Participants can learn how easy and fun it is to spot birds almost anywhere.
Hike: Participants can take a short hike and learn the basics to find the perfect trails themselves.
Outdoor Safety: Learn the basics to be prepared and safe for all outdoor adventures.
Accessible outdoor recreation: Experience and learn about accessible outdoor recreation opportunities on state territory including hiking, camping, bird watching, fishing and boating.
At Long Dock Park, participants can search for fish in the Hudson River, learn native fishing techniques, and learn to use rod and reel. A Spanish interpreter will be on site for this event.
In addition to the Mt. Loretto event, DEC and NOAA are also hosting a seine and net fishing event as part of World Fish Migration Day from 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. at Lemon Creek Park on Staten Island.
All DEC events are free. Guests are encouraged to bring picnic lunches and their own games or exercise equipment. Details, including schedules and registration requirements, are available on the DEC website. Note that event times vary.
Venues in the State Park
- Long Island: Sunken Meadow State Park
- Niagara: Buffalo Harbor State Park
- genesis: Hamlin Beach State Park
- allegany: Allegany State Park
- Saratoga/Capital Region: Saratoga Spa State Park
- finger lakes: Taughannock Falls State Park
- New York: Denny Farrell Riverbank State Park
- Taconic: Lake Taghkanic State Park
Program and schedule details for each location are listed below and can be viewed at parks.ny.gov. Guests are encouraged to bring picnic lunches and their own games or exercise equipment. Visit parks.ny.gov for details of visitor facilities at each location.
DEC manages nearly 5 million acres of public land, including 3 million acres in the Adirondack and Catskill Forest Reserves, 55 campgrounds and day-use areas, more than 5,000 miles of formal hiking trails, and hundreds of trailheads, boat launches, and fishing piers. Plan your next outdoor adventure and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and Instagram.
The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation oversees more than 250 parks, historic sites, recreational trails, golf courses, boat ramps and more that will be visited by a record 78.4 million people in 2021. A recent study found that New York State Parks generates $5 billion in park and visitor spending supporting nearly 54,000 jobs. For more information on these recreation areas, visit www.parks.ny.gov, download the free NY State Parks Explorer mobile app, or call 518.474.0456. Also connect on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
The New York State Office for People With Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) provides quality person-centered support and services to people with developmental disabilities, including intellectual disabilities, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, autism spectrum disorders, and other neurological impairments. OPWDD provides services directly and through a network of over 600 nonprofit providers. OPWDD’s mission is to help people live richer lives that include meaningful relationships, good health, personal growth, and a home that allows them to participate in their community.