Getting Kids Outdoors

The second ever Outdoor Mentors Festival hosted by Colorado Trout Unlimited took place at Chatfield State Park on May 3rd. Fly fishing, bait fishing, canoeing, rock climbing, nature walk, laser shot, air rifle and archery activities were all available for kids to experience at no cost to participants. These activities were provided by our partners at Colorado Bow Hunters Association, Pheasants Forever, Colorado Trout Unlimited, American Canoe Association, Avid4 Adventure and Colorado Parks & Wildlife. OMpic2In an effort to provide experience in outdoor activities to children who may not have that chance in other settings, the event focused on local mentoring groups. There were over 100 participants from Big Brothers Big Sisters, Denver Kids, Inc., and Denver Sports Buddies, along with other organizations. It was often the case during the May 3rd event that it was a child and mentors first time fishing, shooting, canoeing, or rock climbing. Not only was the event at Chatfield a success in that the children had a great time, the mentors also saw how easy and fun it is to take part in some of the activities. Colorado’s great outdoors, and locations such as Chatfield State Park, are meant to be shared by all. We hope events such as this will get more youth outside and caring about our natural resources.

The Colorado Outdoor Mentors are a coalition of conservation organizations, state agencies, youth development organizations, and other key outdoor recreation stakeholders engaged in a sustainable, coordinated effort to expand opportunities for non-traditional audiences to participate in traditional outdoor recreational activities and learn the importance of preserving our conservation heritage.

Whatever outdoor pursuit interests a child, there are organizations providing an outlet for that activity. The Colorado Outdoor Mentors and CTU hope to make those connections and provide those opportunities. By encouraging mentors to share their enjoyment of the outdoors with a child on a regular basis, we can make a significant impact on that child’s perception of the outdoors.

Check in to the events section of to stay up to date on upcoming youth education events throughout the summer.

***Let’s Fish! Day Camp - July 12th, July 19th, and a night of camping on August 3rd - 4th

Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s Angler Outreach Program and Colorado Trout Unlimited are offering a special youth family fishing program for Denver and the surrounding areas. These fishing clinics are designed to recruit and encourage youth participation in fishing and camping. Fishing activities will build upon the skills learned the previous weekend and include: •    Warm Water and Fly Fishing Techniques •    Wildlife Management and Fish Ecology •    “Leave no trace” Camping in Golden Gate Canyon State Park Apply for the Let's Fish Day Camp here.

***Fall Outdoor Mentors Festival - August 16th at Barr Lake State Park

Contact Garrett Hanks at for more information about Colorado Outdoor Mentors and how to participate in future events.