Milky Way arching over Kings Canyon (c) WallyPacholka / AstroPics.com
There's always something fun to do in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, but every now and then, there are some extra-special things going on.
Expert naturalists from the Sequoia Parks Conservancy have special walks year-round. Whether it's a stargazing walk in the summer or a winter snowshoe walk, these walks are one of the best ways to get an insider's view of the parks. See below for details.
And of course, we also have some extra-special events. Whether it's a summer stargazing festival or a once-in-a-lifetime park anniversary celebration, look below for a list of upcoming special events.
If you're looking for the classic ranger-led programs that the national parks are famous for presenting, please consult the National Park Service's schedule of events.
Learn more about the following events and activities:
- Celebrating 100-Plus Years of the National Park Service
- Find Your Park
- Every Kid in a Park
- 2018 Fee-Free Days
- Sequoia Parks Conservancy Naturalist Programs
- Ranger-Led Programs
- Winter Nights at the Big Trees
- Dark Sky Festival
Celebrating 100-Plus Years of the National Park Service
Find Your Park
The National Park Service celebrated its 100th Anniversary in 2016. They kicked off in April 2015 with the Find Your Park campaign to encourage everyone to find their park.
Every Kid in a Park
The National Park Service wants to encourage more families and kids to get out and see our incredible parks. As part of the Every Kid in a Park program, they are giving free entry to families accompanied by a fourth-grader. Learn more about the Every Kid In a Park program here.
Enjoy free entry into Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks in 2018!
- Monday, January 15: Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
- Saturday, April 21: First day of National Park Week
- Saturday, September 22: National Public Lands Day
- Sunday, November 11: Veterans Day
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Sequoia Parks Conservancy Naturalist Programs
The Sequoia Parks Conservancy offers a broad array of programs throughout the year, ranging from hikes with an expert naturalist to moonlight snowshoe walks to living history events where an SPC interpreter brings alive a character from the past.
Current programs include:
- Winter Wonders Snowshoe - Lodgepole Market: Explore the winter wonderlands of our national parks during this leisurely snowshoe! All ages and experience levels are welcome. (Offered on most Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays)
- Snowshoe Among the Giants - Grant Grove: This walk takes you on an adventure to North Grove, and the trail loop offers a great opportunity for doing photography, building winter-recreation skills, and more! (Offered on Fridays and select U.S. federal holidays)
- Winter Wonders Snowshoe - John Muir Lodge: Join us for a relaxing snowshoe and explore our national parks during the winter! All ages and experience levels are welcome. (Offered on Saturdays)
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Walk to a sequoia tree or a meadow with a ranger. Join fellow visitors for an evening program. Take the kids on a Junior Ranger walk and become a Junior Ranger yourself! The National Park Service offers a changing set of ranger programs throughout the year, with new schedules posted frequently.
Winter Nights at the Big Trees
Take in the classic country sounds of up-and-coming local musician Jason Cade at Grant Grove Restaurant! He'll be performing at Grant Grove Restaurant's 1st Annual live winter music series, Winter Nights at the Big Trees. Performance dates are February 8, February 22, March 8, and March 22, and all shows are from 8-10 p.m.
Two overnight stay packages at John Muir Lodge are available, and include two tickets to the show. One package also includes a delicious prix fixe dinner at Grant Grove Restaurant.
Concert tickets can also be purchased by calling (559) 335-5500, and will be held at the door:
- $15/person in advance (includes one beverage coupon)
- $20/person at the door
View event flyer. (.PDF - Click to Download Acrobat Reader)
Learn more about Jason Cade.
Dark Sky Festival: September 7-9, 2018
To celebrate the special nature of Sequoia's dark skies, the Sequoia Field Institute sponsors a Dark Sky Festival every year. The event typically runs for a couple of days and features daytime educational events and presentations by astronomers and astronauts. At night, the stars are, well, the stars of the show!