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Natural Tourism: Vacation planning with CDPL


The Crawfordsville District Public Library would like to encourage our patrons to explore our national, state and local parks during their summer vacations and support our local resources by being natural tourists.

Did you know that the Indiana State Parks system manages 24 state parks, seven small satellite locations, eight reservoir properties, two state forest recreation areas and two off-road riding areas? This includes more than 7,000 campsites, 700 miles of trails, 17 swimming pools and 15 beaches as well as playgrounds, shelters, marinas and nearly 3,000 buildings. CDPL has several resources to help you plan your visit and to mindfully prepare you for outdoor fun.

In the “National Geographic Guide to State Parks of the United States” (917.3 Nat) you can learn about the best state parks in the nation, including the nearby Turkey Run State Park. If you are interested in enjoying our national parks, the “National Geographic Guide to National Parks of the United States” (917.3 Nat) is another great option. This book’s smart design is divided by region for easy planning. Nat Geo is famous for having the ability to highlight the “best of” any subject in their colorful and informative publications.

If you are interested in hard facts accompanied by colored imagery, “Mapping America’s National Parks: Preserving Our Natural and Cultural Treasures” (333.578 Map) is published by the US National Parks Service and has a foreword by Ken Burns and Dayton Duncan. It provides extensive data on federal, state, local and private cultural and natural resources by comparing an array of maps, charts and diagrams. The “Atlas of Yellowstone” (912.787 Atl) is another terrific option for fact-minded readers. This oversized book is full of colorful images, maps and charts explaining the transformation of Yellowstone prior to the recent flood disaster. The compiled information was born from a collaboration of experts including W. Andrew Marcus, James E. Meacham, Justin T. Menke, Ann W. Rodman, Alethea Y. Steingisser and Ross West.

For those of you seeking an activity more than a destination, we have outstanding books that can provide informative and educational opportunities for all nature lovers. Brush up on your outdoor survival skills with “Bush Craft 101: A Field Guide to the Art of Wilderness Survival” (613.6 Can) by Dave Canterbury. Mindfully plan your campsite meals with “The Leave-No Crumbs Camping Cookbook” (641.578 Gre) by Rick Greenspan and Hal Kahn, or learn how to gather edible plants with Ellen Zachos in “Backyard Foraging” (641.3 Zac).

You do not need to leave your yard to have the opportunity to explore nature. Check out “National Geographic Backyard Guide to the Night Sky” (520 Faz) by Andrew Fazekas. This book is another example of Nat Geo’s ability to produce a beautiful and readable informational book. “A World of Insects: The Harvard University Press Reader” (595.7 Wor) by Ring T. Carde and Vincent H. Resh, or “Moss: Discover. Gather. Grow.” (588.2 Nor) by Ulrica Nordstromis are also fabulous choices for those of you who would like to expand your knowledge of the natural world.

Finally, check out our new borrowing option from our Library of Things. The “Explorer Adventure Backpack” (Lot BKPK C.1), provides you with one Indiana State Park day pass and recreational guide, 5 books about the natural world, a pair of binoculars, a compass, and a flashlight. Patrons may check out one of five backpacks for seven days. For more information, talk to our Circulation staff on the first floor.

For assistance with finding books or any other relevant materials, stop by the Reference Desk on the 2nd floor. Finally, if you are interested in searching our catalog in advance, signing up for an upcoming program, or reserving a meeting room, please visit our website at CDPL is open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 1-5 p.m. Sunday.


Toni Ridgway-Woodall is a library assistant in the Reference and Local History department at the Crawfordsville District Public Library.


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