Renewing Jasper National Park's Visitor Experience
Part VI: Park Interpretive Programs
Over the past few years there have been many exciting changes to Jasper National Park’s interpretation programs. Parks Canada’s creative staff of 15 interpreters designs the dynamic and interactive programs, making sure they’re fun for everyone – visitors, local residents, young families and adventurists will all find a program they enjoy.
From July to early September, the outdoor theatre at Whistler’s campground hosts nightly shows that are open to all and free of charge. These interactive programs are designed to get the audience involved, and include:
- Whose Hooves - learn how ungulates survive in the wild under the pressure of the elements and predators. Bring the whole family - kids can even join in as junior interpreters.
- Facebook of the Forest - see what our forested friends are up to.
- Geology Rocks - get your rock and roll on!
- Finger on the Pulse of the Park – your chance to check out the latest research on wildlife monitoring and population trends.
- Métis Fiddle and Dance - join the park’s Métis interpreter for a mix of First Nations culture, and European reels and jigs.
- Whistler’s campground is also home to the Xplorers Tent, great fun for kids aged 6-12. At early evening programs in the tent, kids can become detectives, trackers, photographers, treasure hunters, or explorer, and can spend time learning about campfire safety.
If you’re camping at Wilcox or Wabasso campgrounds on a weekend, join a park interpreter for a free evening campfire program. In Then and Now, you can find out the history of the early trail blazers and explorers of the route we now know as the Icefields Parkway. Enjoy some hot cocoa and bannock while finding out more about erosion and how it has created the beautiful views we admire during Ice and Company, or listen to some lively Métis music and hear stories about Cree life lessons with Songs and Stories, the Métis Way. Voices around the Fire is a fun sing-along program; you can also hear true bear tales and share your own stories with the park Wildlife Guardians.
Info Centre Lawn programs
© Parks Canada / R. Bray
Info Centre Lawn programs
Not staying in one of Jasper’s campgrounds? You can also find Parks Canada’s interpreters on the Information Centre lawn or roving throughout the park.
To experience some of Jasper National Park’s rich cultural history, stop by the Info Centre lawn on Saturday and Sunday afternoons for Out and About in the Park. Programs offered here include:
- Cultural Teachings and Tipi Construction
- Cultural Teachings and Hand Crafts
- Walk in Moccasins
If you are out for a drive during the late morning or early afternoon this summer, you can find Parks Canada’s roving interpreters set up at a variety of popular spots throughout the park. The roving interpreters share information on Jasper National Park’s bears, species at risk, ungulates and their hooves, horns and antlers, rocks and fossils, the power of nature and climate change, and more.
JNP’s Wildlife Guardians patrol Jasper’s roads, ensuring safe wildlife viewing. Looking for ‘bear jams’ or other wildlife traffic jams, the guardians share information that helps protect wildlife and people, allowing visitors to experience and photograph Jasper’s wonderful wildlife from a safe distance.
Every year, Jasper National Park’s interpreters reach more than 60,000 of Jasper’s 2 million annual visitors. The many programs offered help visitors connect to Jasper National Park, creating an understanding of and appreciation for all aspects of our magnificent park: geology, history, ecosystems, wildlife, species at risk, natural areas and cultural treasures. This knowledge helps visitors enjoy the park in a way that ensures it’s ecological integrity remains unimpaired into the future, so that one day their grandchildren can enjoy this special place just as they enjoy it today.
So, next time you are looking for something new to do in the park, come and check out our talented team of interpreters! Schedules and program descriptions are available online at www.pc.gc.ca/jasper-interpretation