Registration for these events closed on October 20.

Educational Offsite Sessions

Saturday, November 16


Full-Day Sessions


Staunton State Park and Hiwan Museum

Interpreting Historical Sites in the Mountains 

Travel to the mountains to visit two locations rich in history. We will stop first at Staunton State Park, the latest addition to the state park system, to check out the historical displays in the visitor center, and then proceed to visit one or more of the historical cabins in the park where knowledgeable volunteers will provide living history interpretation. After lunch, the tour continues to historic Hiwan Museum in Evergreen, Colorado, for a behind-the-scenes tour of this living heritage center led by Tim Sandsmark, the museum director. The museum was once a cherished retreat for a wealthy family, later the headquarters of the sprawling Hiwan Ranch. 

Time: 8:00am–3:15pm 
Cost: $72
Maximum Number of Participants: 30
Minimum Number of Participants: 16
Meals: Lunch included
Suggested Gear: Weather-appropriate clothing and comfortable walking shoes
Accessible: Some areas are not accessible.
Transportation: Bus provided. Departs at 8:00am; returns to hotel 3:15pm
 
  • 3 of 30 Slots Filled

Wheelchair Hiking and All-Terrain Handcycle Biking

Unique Experience and Important Discussions

Topher Downham and Mark Davison will lead a two-mile wheelchair hike around Wonderland Lake. Participants will get to experience hiking using a wheelchair on this moderate rolling trail. Be prepared for a slow, fun, eye-opening roll around this beautiful lake nestled in the foothills of North Boulder. We’ll stop at some of the more picturesque locations to discuss the experience, enjoy a snack, and take in the local flora and fauna. Special guests on the hike include Lydia Davison and a few other children experiencing disabilities. After returning to the trailhead and eating lunch, we’ll try out the all-terrain power-assist handcycles, taking turns testing trails on these game-changing hand-bikes that get people with disabilities far out in nature on rough terrain. 

Time: 8:30am–3:00pm
Cost: $58
Maximum Number of Participants: 15
Minimum Number of Participants: 15
Meals: Boxed lunch included
Suggested Gear: Weather-appropriate clothing and comfortable shoes for hiking and biking 
Accessible: Yes
Transportation: Bus provided. Bus departs at 8:30am; returns to hotel 3:00pm
 
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Boulder County Parks and Open Space

Agricultural History, Management Tools for Public Engagement, and a Hike!

Take a trip to Boulder County’s Agricultural Heritage Center, where live animals, furnished buildings, and hands-on activities educate youth and adults about Boulder County’s agricultural history. Then see a presentation by wildlife biologists on elk over-population and how elk hunting became a management tool that included public engagement in the decision process. After lunch (included) we’ll visit Ron Stewart Preserve at Rabbit Mountain for a three-mile hike, and possibly see live elk. 

Time: 8:15am–4:45pm
Cost: $75
Maximum Number of Participants: 30
Minimum Number of Participants: 15
Meals: Boxed lunch included
Suggested Gear: Wear shoes for hiking, dress in layers for the weather, and bring drinking water and snacks.
Accessible: Yes, with limited access for hiking. Please contact NAI for more information.
Transportation: Bus provided. Bus departs at 8:15am; returns to hotel 4:45pm
 
  • 4 of 30 Slots Filled

Rocky Mountain National Park and Enos Mills Cabin

Visit the Father of Interpretation’s Mountain Home

Welcome to Rocky Mountain National Park! Visit the original homestead cabin built by Enos Mills, the father of Rocky Mountain National Park, now on the National Register of Historic Places. Travel on to Beaver Meadows Visitor Center in Rocky Mountain National Park to watch the park movie and pick up a souvenir in the park store. After lunch enjoy a ranger-led hike around beautiful Sprague Lake (1/2 mile, 8,690 feet above sea level) to discuss interpretive offerings at the park, the challenge of dealing with over 4.6 million visitors, and the fascinating ecosystem we’re hiking through. 

Time: 8:30am–5:30pm
Cost: $93
Maximum Number of Participants: 50
Minimum Number of Participants: 30
Meals: Boxed lunch included
Suggested Gear: Weather-appropriate clothing and shoes for hiking and outdoors. Participants are strongly advised to bring trekking poles and/or some kind of traction device like YakTraks or Microspikes for their boots.
Accessible: Not accessible; very rough terrain 
Transportation: Bus provided. Bus departs at 8:30am; returns to hotel 5:30pm
 
  • 20 of 50 Slots Filled

Take the Left-Hand Outdoor Challenge!

Outdoor Centered Learning in the Rocky Mountain’s Iconic Landscapes

Creating interpretive and educational programs for teens can be a daunting task. Luckily, outdoor-centered learning provides abundant opportunities for interpreters to address the needs of teen learners. Join a ranger-led program to practice tested outdoor activities that engage teens in two successful programs: Boulder County’s award-winning Left-Hand Outdoor Challenge program and the City of Boulder’s Junior Ranger Naturalist program. Learn winter survival skills, build your own fire, and participate in a search-and-rescue operation in some of the Rocky Mountain’s most iconic landscapes. This will be a physically challenging field trip! Come prepared to spend the day outdoors regardless of the weather. 

Time: 8:15am–4:45pm
Cost: $60 
Maximum Number of Participants: 16
Minimum Number of Participants: 16
Meals: Water, snacks, lunch, and s’mores will be provided.
Suggested Gear: Hiking boots, appropriate winter clothing, and outdoor essentials are required.
Accessible: Very physically challenging. Hiking paths may not be accessible. 
Transportation: Bus provided. Bus departs at 8:15am; returns to hotel 4:45pm
 
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Interpretation with an Altitude!

Buffalo Bill, the Wild Wild West, and Dinosaurs—Wait, What? 

Travel above 7,500 feet to visit amazing natural and historical places! Our tour begins with a stop at Genesee Park to see the only city-owned free-ranging bison. Considered one of the country’s wildest herds. Then we’ll go to Buffalo Bill Museum and Grave, where museum staff will provide an overview about the museum and its audience, and answer questions about Buffalo Bill and the Wild West. From there, it is a short ride to Lookout Mountain Nature Center (Jefferson County Open Space), where rangers will talk briefly about the history of LMNC, how it was one of the first nature centers to use recycled/ecologically sound material, and explain the changes they’ve gone through from a stale permanent exhibit to temporary exhibits emphasizing stewardship messages. Weather permitting, the ranger will lead you on a half hour hike. After lunch end your journey at Dinosaur Ridge, one of the world’s most famous dinosaur fossil localities. 

Time: 8:00am–5:00pm
Cost: $90
Maximum Number of Participants: 40
Minimum Number of Participants: 25
Meals: Boxed lunch provided
Suggested Gear: Wear shoes for hiking, dress in layers for the weather, and bring drinking water and snacks.
Accessible: Hiking paths may not be accessible. 
Transportation: Bus provided. Bus departs at 8:00am; returns to hotel 5:00pm
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Explore Nature, History and Endangered Species in Colorado Springs!

Fountain Creek Nature Center, Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, and a Scenic Drive through the Garden of the Gods 

This tour will highlight some of the most interesting locations of Colorado Springs. We will first stop at Fountain Creek Nature Center, where Nancy Bernard will share how they created a brand new human history exhibit that fulfills FCNC’s mission “to connect people to their natural and cultural resources” by telling the human history of Fountain Creek, from inception to completion—and how to do it on a shoestring budget! 

From there we will continue on to Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, where we will visit interactive hands-on stations hosted by the education team and meet ambassador animals and their keepers and even touch an animal! After lunch we will proceed to the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum (CSPM), an American Alliance of Museums–accredited municipal history museum that builds a lasting connection to the Pikes Peak region by preserving and sharing Colorado Springs’ cultural history. Here we will join program coordinator Meg Poole for a demonstration and discussion of the CSPM’s interpretive program offerings, to visit the children’s interactive “Trade at Bent’s Fort” exhibit, and explore some of our favorite exhibits including the newly opened “Evidence,” which examines the findings of an archaeological excavation at the home of our city’s founder, General William Jackson Palmer. On our trip back to Denver we will drive through Garden of the Gods, one of the most striking natural features of the area, and stop to snap a few pictures.

Time: 7:00am–5:30pm
Cost: $115 
Maximum Number of Participants: 40
Minimum Number of Participants: 16
Meals: Lunch at zoo
Suggested Gear: Weather-appropriate clothing and comfortable walking shoes
Accessible: Yes 
Transportation: Bus provided. Bus departs at 7:00am; returns to hotel 5:30pm
 
  • 9 of 40 Slots Filled

Denver Zoo and Denver Museum of Nature & Science

Let’s Talk All About Exhibits! 

Join Denver Zoo for a look into what it takes to design a new outdoor exhibit for today’s multigenerational audience. Visit the brand-new Harmony Hill Bears Exhibit and learn how it incorporates messages to educate guests on successfully coexisting with bears. Explore everything it takes to open an immersive conservation-focused exhibit from marketing to evaluation and from exhibit design to volunteer and staff programming. Take a guided tour through Denver Zoo’s exhibits and meet with volunteer interpreters and other education staff. After a catered lunch at the zoo, continue this exploration of modern exhibit design next door at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. Hear from museum education staff about the museum’s brand-new first-floor experience, a pop-up, community-responsive exhibit created with input from the community. Explore the exhibit and discover some tools and techniques that you can use yourself!

Time: 8:15am–5:00pm
Cost: $70 
Maximum Number of Participants: 40
Minimum Number of Participants: 25
Meals: Lunch included at the zoo
Suggested Gear: Weather-appropriate clothing and comfortable walking shoes
Accessible: Yes
Transportation: Bus provided. Bus departs at 8:15am; returns to hotel 5:00pm
 
  • 20 of 40 Slots Filled

Denver Art Museum and Clyfford Still Museum

See Masterpieces by Impressionist Claude Monet and Abstract Expressionist Clyfford Still, and meet Museum Staff

This is the perfect opportunity to see the Claude Monet exhibit without having to book a time and wait in long lines! Visit Denver Art Museum on a self-guided tour of their new exhibit, “Claude Monet: The Truth of Nature,” the most comprehensive U.S. exhibit of Monet paintings in more than two decades. Spanning Monet’s entire career, this exhibit focuses on his relationship with nature. Meet with museum staff to learn about the creative and innovative approach they took to engage broader audiences, creating a structured experience that would fulfill teacher requests for student educational experiences and would better engage family groups. 

After a catered lunch at Denver Art Museum, this educational event continues next door at the Clyfford Still Museum. Join the museum’s Director of Education and Programs for a guided tour of the fall exhibitions: Collection Highlights and Elemental. We’ll discuss strategies, challenges, and successes in making these exhibitions more accessible and welcoming for audiences. 

Time: 9:00am–3:00pm 
Cost: $36
Maximum Number of Participants: 30
Minimum Number of Participants: 10
Meals: Lunch on your own at Mad Greens
Suggested Gear: Weather appropriate clothing and comfortable walking shoes
Accessible: Yes
Transportation: Within walking distance of hotel
 
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Upper Colorado River Basin Water

Western water-focused field trip

Any idea where Denver’s water supply comes from, or if it’s affected by climate change and population growth? Join this trip to find that out, and more!
 
This scenic and informative trip starts at the top of Berthoud Pass along the Continental Divide. Kirk Klanke of Trout Unlimited, interpreters from ECOS Communications, and a host of other guest experts will help guide our education about water issues, solutions, and finding balance among competing users of Upper Colorado River Basin water.
 
Stops/Sites include:

  • Berthoud Pass
  • Fraser River transmountain water diversion site and the Moffat water tunnel that supplies Metro Denver.
  • Headwaters River Journey museum, a state-of-the-art water education venue.
  • Lunch in Granby at Mid-Town Café listening to a stakeholder who helped craft the Colorado River Cooperative Agreement.
  • Windy Gap Reservoir and the new Colorado River connectivity project
  • Grand Lake and the Alva B. Adams water diversion tunnel that supplies large parts of N. Colorado.
  • Rocky Mountain National Park Kawuneeche Visitor Center and Grand Ditch (1890s water diversion)

Time: 7:00am – 6:30pm
Cost: $98.00
Maximum Number of Participants: 50
Minimum Number of Participants: 16
Meals: Lunch on own at Granby Mid-Town Café
Suggested Gear: Dress in layers for the weather and comfortable shoes.
Accessible: limited
Transportation: Bus provided. Departs at 7:00am; returns 6:30pm



NAI National Conference

Denver Colorado
November 12–16, 2019

Interested in Sponsorships or Advertising?

Contact NAI Events Manager Michele Farmer at mfarmer@interpnet.com or 970-484-8283 x805.