San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park

Please click on the following link for the official San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park Junior Ranger web page:

http://www.nps.gov/safr/forkids/beajuniorranger.htm

You can pick up the Junior Ranger Program activity booklet at the Visitor Center or the Ticket Booth on Hyde Street Pier. There is an activity booklet for kids ages 5-8, and one for kids 9-12. The booklets are also available in Spanish. Once the activity book is completed you can return to either the Ticket Booth or Visitor Center. A Ranger will review the activity book with the Junior Ranger and present them with a Junior Ranger badge. San Francisco Maritime does not have their own Junior Ranger patch; however, they do have a patch with the Junior Ranger motto, “Explore • Learn • Protect”.

I visited San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park with my daughters on August 29, 2009. We picked up activity booklets for children ages 5-8 at the visitor center. Even though my youngest daughter is only 4 1/2 years old she was allowed to participate in their program.

In this posting I will discuss the requirements for the activity booklet for children ages 5-8. To become a Junior Ranger at San Francisco Maritime, you need to complete all 4 activities in the book or attend a ranger-led program and complete 2 activities. Once your finished, have a ranger check the book to receive your Junior Ranger badge.

The activities in the book are as follows:
1. Experience your America – What National Park would you like to visit next?
2. Seaside Scavenger Hunt – circle items you find on Hyde Street Pier
3. Ports of Call – Explore exhibits of the ship Balclutha to find examples of cargo and draw lines on a map showing its travels.
4. Draw it! – Design you own Figurehead

The girls completed all four activities in the book. They were age appropriate for my girls with a little help in explaining the activities. I would have liked to see more activities to complete. After we got back to the hotel, my six year old actually stated to me that she had wished the activity book had been a little harder so she could have learned more.

After the girls completed the booklet, the girls attended a craft workshop for children. The girls made necklaces made of flags that had a secret message and when decoded spelled their names. The workshop was ran by Rangers Carol Kiser and Denise McEvoy. It was evident that both Ranger Kiser and McEvoy enjoy their job as they were very involved with the girls as they were creating their necklaces and were constantly looking for additional children to join in the crafts. We spent a considerable amount of time talking to them about their park and I would like to say thank you to them for making our trip more enjoyable.

The girls took their completed activity books to the Visitor Center and received they San Francisco Maritime badge. Please see below for a photo of that badge.

One of the things I have had my six year old daughter complete after each Junior Ranger trip is to write a short journal. She is now starting to use a computer and has expressed an interest in typing that journal on this forum. So in the future plan to see postings from Junior Ranger Alyssa.