People around America are finding their park every day. Find yours in Howard County. It might be closer than you think!

Inspired by the National Park Service's "Find Your Park" campaign, Howard County Department of Recreation & Parks invites you to discover eight of our parks this summer to win prizes and spend quality time outdoors on your own, with friends or with your family. Take a look below for more information on this incredible opportunity!

Have questions? Contact us!

Find Your Park HoCo


Why should you find your park?

Quality of life improvements for all ages:

  • Children who play outside are more physically active, more creative in their play, less aggressive and show better concentration. (Burdette and Whitaker, 2005; Ginsburg et al., 2007).
  • Physical activity outdoors for as little as five minutes leads to measurable improvements in mood and self-esteem for children and adults. (Environ. Sci. Technol., 2010, 44 (10), pp 3947–3955)
  • Older adults who spend more time outdoors have less pain, sleep better and have less functional decline in their ability to carry out their daily activities. (J Aging Health. 2008 Apr; 20(3):259-72)

A new adventure – If you want something fun (and free) to do by yourself, with a loved one, or with your family this summer, why not make finding your favorite local park into an adventure?

Prizes – Did we mention you can win prizes?

How it Works

To participate, all you need to get started is to pick up a "Find Your Park" booklet that will allow you to document your adventure and become eligible for prizes. 

Each of the eight parks included in the booklet contain a special “Find Your Park” post with a rubbing plate that you can use to document your visits to the parks. Any person that visits all eight parks and turns in their booklet receives a prize bag, and is entered into a drawing to win a grand prize. 

Though you only need to find the eight posts to be eligible for prizes, each park also holds an additional optional adventure you can take by yourself, with your loved one, or with your family.

Your Booklet

Picking Up Your Booklet

Booklets will be available for you to pick up starting Saturday, April 16, 2016 at the following events and locations:

  • Howard County GreenFest - Howard County Community College (April 16, between 10 AM and 4 PM)
  • Sunset Serenades Concerts - Free, Wednesday evening concerts during the summer. Check the link for dates and times. Booklets are given out at the Park Ranger tent during the concerts.
  • Robinson Nature Center - 6692 Cedar Lane, Columbia MD (Anytime between April 16 and September 1, 2016 during operating hours: Wed-Sat from 9 AM to 5 PM and Sun from Noon to 5 PM).
  • REI (Columbia store) - 6100 Dobbin Road, Suite B, Columbia, MD 21045 (Anytime between April 16 and September 1, 2016 during operating hours: Mon-Sat from 10 AM to 9 PM; Sun from 11 AM to 7 PM).

    Turning in Your Booklet

    During the month of September 2016, bring your completed booklets to Robinson Nature Center during their operating hours (Wed - Sat, 9AM to 5PM and Sun, Noon to 5 PM). 

    If you have all eight rubbing plates documented and your booklet is complete, you are eligible to receive a prize bag and you will be entered into the grand prize drawing. Winners of the grand prize drawing will be announced by the end of October.

    Please do not drop off booklets before September, as prize bags will not yet be available for pick up.

    Preview the Find Your Park Booklet



    Featured Parks

    Cedar Lane Park
    Centennial Park
    Meadowbrook Park
    Middle Patuxent Environmental Area
    Rockburn Branch Park
    Robinson Nature Center
    Savage Park and Mill Trail
    Western Regional Park



    Prizes and Supporters

    Prize Bag

    Thanks to the support of the Howard County Department of Recreation & Parks, the Natural & Historical Resources Division, Park Rangers program and Robinson Nature Center, all participants who complete their Find Your Park booklet will receive a prize bag with goodies to help you continue exploring Howard County parks. 

    Grand Prize

    Thanks to our supporters at REI's Columbia store, a lucky winner will be selected from among those who complete their Find Your Park booklet to receive the following Camping Gear package worth over $300! 

    The Camping Gear package includes: