When: Saturday, August 18, 2018  10:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Where: Near Bldgs 2507 & 2509 off of Rte. 26 and Munns Corner Road between Wheeler-Sack Army Airfield and Great Bend


Outdoor Adventure Day is a family-friendly, free event with hands-on activities and demonstrations appropriate for all ages focused on outdoor recreation and the outdoors. The event is open to families on Fort Drum as well as the North Country community. 

This event is being coordinated by Fort Drum's Natural Resources Branch (Directorate of Public Works) and the Cornell Cooperative Extension of Jefferson County. Other cooperators include Fort Drum's Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare & Recreation (MWR) Parks & Recreation Program; Fort Drum's Directorate of Emergency Services Fire Department and Game Warden Section; the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Division of Mineral Resources and Division of Fish & WildlifeNew York State 4-H Shooting Sports Program; Fort Drum's Army Community ServiceJefferson Community College in Watertown; SUNY-ESF Woodsmen's Team in Syracuse; the Fort Drum Chapter of Project Healing Waters; Indian River Lakes Conservancy in Redwood; the Sci-Tech Center of Northern New York in Watertown; the American Maple Museum in Croghan; Ace of Diamonds Mine & Campground in Middleville; the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook; Jefferson Co. Public Helath Service in Watertown; Oswego County Tourism; and Lewis County Chamber of Commerce


The 6th Annual Outdoor Adventure Day will take place on Saturday, August 18, 2018 from 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. The event will take place rain-or-shine. As the name implies, it will be outdoors, so please dress appropriately and bring sun screen, water, etc.


Outdoor Adventure Day will take place in and around Building S-2507/2509 on Fort Drum. This is outside the fenceline and there is no requirement to pass through the security gates. Parking will be behind Buildings S-2507/2509 off of Munn's Corner Road.

Directions from Interstate 81: take Exit 48A to Interstate I-781. Go 4.0 miles to Exit 4 (the only exit) before the Fort Drum Main Gate. At the stoplights at the bottom of the ramp, turn left onto US 11 North and go approximately 3.0 miles to NY Rte. 26 (at Evans Mills). Turn right on NY Rte. 26 and go approximately 5.0 miles (past the stoplights going to Wheeler-Sack Army Airfield) and turn left into the driveway ("Natural Resources Permits" is on a green sign). Parking is in the grassy field behind the building (adjacent to Munn’s Corners Road)—follow the signs.

Directions from NYS Rte. 3: In Great Bend at the junction of NYS Rte. 3 and NYS Rte. 26., go west on NYS Rte. 26 approximately 0.3 miles over the Black River. Turn right into the driveway ("Natural Resources Permits" is on a green sign). Parking is in the grassy field behind the building (adjacent to Munn’s Corners Road)—follow the signs.



The event is open to EVERYONE whether living on Fort Drum or not. Adults of all ages as well as children from 2 to 18 will find interesting things to see and do.

Because this is an all-day event, Family Readiness Groups will have food available to purchase. If you are an FRG representative and want to sell food, contact Jason Wagner at 772-5971.

Families may also bring their own food and picnicking is allowed on the grounds. Water stations will be available around the grounds, but please also bring water and stay hydrated. 

Portable latrines and hand-washing stations are available.

This is a family-friendly event. No profanity, alcohol or smoking. (If you must smoke, please smoke in the parking lot area.) 


In 2017, there were 32 stations set up around the grounds of Buildings S-2507/2509. People can meander and spend as much (or as little) time as they desire. Some stations have scheduled demonstrations; some will have demonstrations or activities running throughout the day. Some of the stations will include: 

Trees & Forest Management. Learn about trees and forest products. See equipment used by Fort Drum's Forest Management Program. Chainsaw safety and tree falling demonstrations at 10:10, 11:10, 12:10, 1:10, 2:10, and 3:10.

SUNY-ESF Woodsmen's Team. See the Woodsmen's Team from the State University of New York - College of Environmental Science & Forestry demonstrate some of their sport events with saws and axes during scheduled times: 10:30, 11:30, 12:30, 1:30, 2:30, 3:30

Wildland Fire Management and Fire Prevention. The Fort Drum Fire Department will be on scene with their wildland fire equipment. Try on fire fighting equipment or spray water from a fire hose!

Conservation Law Enforcement. Meet Fort Drum Game Wardens and NYSDEC Environmental Conservation Officers and see of the equipment they use including snowmobiles, boats, ATVs, and a robotic deer. Try to save a "drowning victim" by throwing a life ring.

Archery. Learn to use a bow and arrow under the guidance of  4-H Shooting Sports certified instructors. Participants must be at least 10 years of age to shoot. A Hold Harmless Agreement must be signed before participating.

Nerf Archery Range. Not to leave anyone out, anyone 9 years of age or younger can shoot Nerf archery.

Nerf Gun Range. Or...anyone 9 years of age or younger can shoot Nerf guns.

Air Rifle. Learn to use an air rifle under the guidance of 4-H Shooting Sports certified instructors. Participants must be at least 10 years of age to shoot. A Hold Harmless Agreement must be signed before participating.

Fishing. Meet local fishing experts Don Meissner and Justin Walts. Try your hand at casting different rods and test your casting accuracy. Test the action of different lures--or test whether they sink or float--in a large aquarium. Play with live bait--nightcrawlers and minnows will be available. Learn to tie a fly and fly fishing techniques with Project Healing Waters.

Rocks & Minerals / Mining. The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Division of Mineral Resources will be on-hand to show rocks and minerals in the area. Lear n about mineral resources in your everyday life. Remember--everything we use is either grown or mined.  NEW IN 2016: Find your own Herkimer diamond from rock provided by Ace of Diamonds Mine & Campground--just 1.5 hours away in Herkimer County.

Aquatic Critters. Go sampling for aquatic critters with Fort Drum's "Stream Team" and learn what about lurks in the waters of Fort Drum.

Trapping & Skinning. See animal skins and the different traps, lures, and scents used by trappers. There will be live demonstrations how to skin an animal at 11:00, 12:30, 2:00, and 3:30.  

Fish & Widllife Management. Check out various trapping and marking techniques used by biologists and wildlife managers to study fish and wildlife. Get trapped in a bear trap! Talk to Martin Feehan, Cornell graduate student, about the deer project in the Cantonment Area and see various ways he catches deer on Fort Drum. Watch Martin fire the capture gun at 1:00 and 3:00. 

Geocaching. Learn about GPS (Global Positioning Systems) units and go on a modern-day treasure hunt. Use a GPS unit to find your way to a geocache and get a prize!

Outdoor Cooking & Fitness. Try your hand at camp fire designs, using other biofuels while camping, and outdoor cooking. Taste some dutch oven recipes including one for Lazy Cobbler. Make trail mix and learn about nutrition. Cornell Cooperative Extension of Jefferson Co. will also have its "smoothie bike" to make a smoothie with pedal power!

Climbing Wall. Strap on a harness and see if you can reach the top! Participants must weigh at least 45 pounds but not more than 250 pounds. A scale will be on site. A Hold Harmless Agreement must be signed before participating. The climbing wall is provided by Adventure Training at Fort Drum's Directorate of Families and Morale, Welfare and Recreation (DFMWR). 

Paleontology. Learn about fossils withJefferson Community College and make a sedimentary rock or fossil print.  

Outdoor Health: Rabies & Lyme Disease. Jefferson County Public Health Servicewill be providing education about vector born diseases and rabies.  Learn the life cycle of mosquitoes and ticks and how to avoid them.  Get your free DEET wipe by stopping by this booth.

Native Arts. Fort Drum's Cultural Resources Program will be on-hand to show some of the artifacts found on Fort Drum as well as provide the opportunity to make jewelry from beads and natural materials; sculpt figuresfrom clay; or, try your hand at flint-knapping. Materials will be provided.

Working Dog Demo: Barn HuntWatch dogs go through their paces searching for vermin in a "barn"--safe for dog and rat, this is an example of what some dogs did routinely to help humans protect their food and livestock. 

Fish & Wildlife. Live animals will be on display in Bldg. S-2509. Get close up and personal with live frogs, fish, snakes, and turtles. Taxidermist mounts and other displays can be viewed.

Besides the established stations, there will also be a tent with arts-and-craft activities including making fish prints and decorating walking sticks.

Information about tourism and activities in the area will be provided by the Lewis County Chamber of CommerceOswego County Promotion & Tourism, and the 1000 Islands International Tourism Council
Smokey Bear will be strolling the grounds throughout the event--how often he'll be seen will depend on how hot it is that day. (Bears get hot under all that fur!)