This year marks 75 years of interactive discovery programs in Ontario parks.
To celebrate, parks across the province are planning a special day of guided walks and Discovery Drop-ins on August 10.
Our guided walks are in memory of Professor JR Dymond, Ontario’s first parks interpreter. He was hired by Algonquin Provincial Park in 1944.
A guided hike in Lake Superior Provincial Park in 1963. From the Ontario Archives.
Guided walks take visitors along a trail in the park to explore the unique natural and cultural heritage features along the way.
Join us for a guided walk
Twenty-seven parks will host a guided walk at 10:00 am on August 10.
These parks have experienced interpreters and naturalists with experience in various areas.
At the end of a guided hike in Killbear Provincial Park
Find a list of parks offering guided walks on August 10 below.
Check out a Discovery Drop-in
Other parks will offer Discovery Drop-ins, a newer component of our Discovery Program. Drop-in tours encourage families with children to explore a theme of the day (like awesome bugs!) along with our discovery guides. However, all ages are welcome!
To learn more about the Discovery program, read here.
A family explores for insects on a fallen log during a Discovery Drop-in
Find a list of parks offering Discovery Drop-ins on August 10 below.
A big greeting
We also want to recognize all the Ontario Parks interpreters and naturalists who have gone before us. Thank you for sharing our collective stories of cultural and natural heritage with Ontarians, Canadians and international visitors.
A historical interpreter at Murphys Point Provincial Park takes visitors on a guided hike along the Silver Queen Mine Trail to an early 20th century mica mine.
Were you an interpreter for Ontario Parks in the past? We would like to know who you are!
- Where did you work and when?
- Where did life take you from there?
- What will you be doing these days?
Are you a visitor to Ontario parks who participated in a particularly moving Discovery Program experience? We’d like to hear from you too!
Children looking at an insect they found on a leaf during a Discovery Drop-in program
Contact us @OntarioParks on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Include the hashtag #OPDiscovery!
Memories of discovery
Whether you’re a veteran camper or visiting for the first time, we hope you remember the parks you visit and how they make you feel. And we hope you continue to visit these places, in person or in your memories, and keep them safe for whoever visits after you.
A visitor and discovery guide get a close look at an insect during a discovery tour at Silent Lake Provincial Park
Our Discovery Program staff is here to enhance your park experiences and connections, so you remember these places and why they are important to you.
Celebrating with us on August 10?
The following parks will offer guided walks at 10:00 am:
The following parks will offer Discovery Walk-ins for the whole day:
For additional details, see the Ontario Parks events page.