‘Hands-On History’ offers opportunity to travel Oregon Trail between Casper and Independence Rock

Independence Rock historical site in Wyoming (File Photo; Trevor T. Trujillo, Oil City News)

CASPER, Wyo. — Fort Caspar Museum and the National Historic Trails Interpretive Center are hosting a “Hands-On History Club” opportunity for people to travel to Oregon Trail sites between Casper and Independence Rock on Aug. 8.

The program is free and is titled “Oregon Trail Sites: Would You Rather?”

“As the name suggests, this program will take place outdoors along the Oregon Trail, and we will maintain a safe distance by traveling in our own cars,” a Thursday release announcing the opportunity states. ” It will be held on Saturday, August 8th beginning at 8:00 a.m. (We want to get an early start to avoid the heat.).”

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The program will utilize a Bureau of Land Management “Would You Rather?” activity guide.

“Students and their parents will travel in their own vehicles along county roads-including some that are unpaved-that follow the Oregon Trail from Casper to Independence Rock,” the release states. “Many sites along the way have historical and/or natural significance, and students will be asked to consider a ‘Would You Rather?’ question about them.”

“With the help of photographs, diary quotes, and the things we have learned on the journey, students will answer questions such as: ‘Would you rather: be a child of today on a road trip with your family, or a child of 1849 traveling west in a wagon train?’”

People interested in joining need to register online by 5 pm Friday Aug. 7. Class information including maps and other materials will be provided to participants.

A free virtual Zoom class will be held as a follow-up to the activity at 10 am Aug. 15. People can register for this class at the link above and can participate in either or both of the opportunities.

“Please state BOTH (if you will be attending the in-person and the virtual),” the release adds.” If you will be attending the VIRTUAL ONLY, please state VIRTUAL.  If you will be attending the IN-PERSON ONLY, please state CAR.” 

“The first 25 local families to sign up for the August 15th virtual class before Tuesday, August 11th at 5:00 p.m., will receive a free activity supplies box delivered safely to their homes.”

The Hands-On History Club is generally geared toward children ages 7-10 but anyone is welcome to participate.

“Because the August 8th program will take place using private vehicles, parents or guardians who can drive will need to participate with their children,” the release adds. “Contact Patricia Ruppert at [email protected] or Stacey Moore at [email protected] if you have questions.”

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