Open House- Sat May 21st 10a-4p*

The Outdoor Lab Open House is REscheduled for Saturday May 21st 10a-1p OR 1p-4p.  

The Outdoor Lab welcomes all Arlington Families to the Open House. Grab your “pod” and explore our 226 acres of mountain trails, meadows, streams and pond.  While at the Lab, your family can: 

  • fish in the pond (cane poles & worms provided!)
  • paddle the boats
  • hike our trails (over 5 miles, various hiking abilities)
  • observe critters in our Nature Center (maybe pet a snake?)
  • find a perfect spot for a family picnic! (bring your lunch!
Get your Tickets!

Due to COVID, we need families to pre-register through Eventbrite here.

  • Please choose EITHER 10a-1p ticket OR 1p-4p ticket (NOT BOTH) This will allow us to meet COVID limits and allow as many families as we can.
  • Each ticket is for one Carload. Please do NOT register for a ticket for each person in your car.
  • Tickets are “donate what you can.” The Outdoor Lab is owned by the non-profit Arlington Outdoor Education Association (a 501c3, tax exempt organization)
  • We will create a waitlist if needed, if your plans change and you don’t plan to come, please let us know

For the Safety of Visitors:

  • all visitors must sign in
  • masks must be worn while inside and when social distancing is not possible
  • NO Dogs allowed
  • please leave only footsteps and take only pictures
Other Info

While at the lab, talk to AOEA board members about the upcoming capital projects or how you could volunteer.  We’re looking for additional board members and have lots of great projects on our plate! 

You can find Directions here, look for signs and volunteers on where to park.

Bad weather, check back here for cancellations or updates.  

We look forward to seeing you!  

Share your pictures and tag #LovetheODL

May 20th 4-8p Fundraiser OneMorePageBooks

Outdoor Lab Fundraiser at One More Page Books

On Friday, May 20, 2022 – 4pm to 8pm

Shop Friday, May 20th between 4pm and 8pm to support the Outdoor Lab! One More Page Books will donate 15% of all sales during those hours – in person and online – to the Arlington Outdoor Education Association.  Meet a great local business and support the ODL.

Browse in person:
One More Page Books (2200 N Westmoreland St, Arlington, VA 22213)
Share with your Friends and Family and #lovetheodl

AAPI Heritage Month @ ODL

This May, the Outdoor Lab and the AOEA celebrate Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month.

With staff and directors with AAPI heritage in our families, we’d like to honor all Asian American and Pacific Islander families, their contributions to science and education and the building of our nation.

In this time of violence against AAPI individuals and communities, we stand together with all who speak out against hate, bigotry, and exclusion.

Join the AOEA Board!

The Outdoor Lab is a partnership between the Arlington Public Schools (APS) and the non-profit Arlington Outdoor Education Association (AOEA).

  • APS provides the teachers, educational program and buses.
  • AOEA owns and manages the land and buildings as well as advocates for outdoor education, STEAM curriculum, and hands-on, experiential leaning.

We need  members of the Arlington community to step-up and help us in this critical time for educating our students.  

We need Board Members for the AOEA!

Current and past Board Members have a variety of experience and skills.  Many are parents, teachers or staff of Arlington schools.  Others are scientists, marketing professionals, real estate agents/builders or consultants.  We need a variety of experiences to challenge our organization to improve and grow.

If you are willing to help Arlington children and the Outdoor Lab (or know someone who might) please contact the AOEA President to learn more about our Board of Directors at president@outdoorlab.org.  We elect a slate of Directors at our annual meeting May, but have openings year round.

If you’d like to volunteer to help the Outdoor Lab learn more HERE.

APS Students- Join the AOEA Board

In 2021, the AOEA Board began a student Board Member program.  The Inaugural Student Board Member was Maria Soukup, a senior at Yorktown High School.

The student Board Member participates in AOEA board meetings, offering advice and voting on AOEA business.  They participate in AOEA events at the Outdoor Lab and in Arlington.  And acts a liaison to their schools and student groups in APS.

If you are a rising Junior or Senior at an APS high school and are interested in learning more.  Contact AOEA Board president at president@outdoorlab.org.

Women’s History Month @ODL

The Women who make the Outdoor Lab Great

Phoebe Hall Knipling

The Outdoor Lab owes its existence to Phoebe Hall Knipling. Her vision and determination that children should experience science first hand, led to the creation of the Outdoor Lab and other pillars of Arlington science education like the Brown Planetarium, Gulf Branch and Long Branch Nature Centers. Learn more from a recent story from Arlington Library’s Womens Work series.

Anita Knipling Scott

Phoebe’s daughter Anita has served on the Board of Directors of the Outdoor Lab for years. She’s continued to build on her mother’s vision and helped thousands of Arlington families experience the joys of the Outdoor Lab.

Recently, Anita was interviewed for the Biscuit Mountain Breakdown and shared some of the early history of the Outdoor Lab. Click here to listen to podcast “Walking Down Memory Lane.”

Michele Karnbach

Michele re-joined the Outdoor Lab staff in 2019 as its new Director. She’s guided the ODL through some of the most challenging months in its existence.

She has reorganized the Lab staff and operations, created new curriculum and lessons for synchronous and asynchronous learning, and launched a podcast as well as new weekend activities for families.
Michele is charting the Lab’s path for the next 50 years of the Outdoor Lab.

Kendra Liddicoat

Michele created the Biscuit Mountain Breakdown podcast and interviewed leaders in the field of outdoor education.  Such as Dr. Kendra Liddicoat who researches memories as outcomes for programs like The Outdoor Lab.  Learn about how memories are an important feature of what happens at nature centers and how we can use that research to improve our program.  Click HERE for Podcasts.

Spring Hikes at ODL- Saturdays

Come visit the Outdoor Lab with your Friends and Family this Spring.  (New Dates Added!)

Grab your “pod” and explore our 226 acres of mountain trails, meadows, streams and pond.

Here are the details:

  • Sign up before you come.  (Click HERE for our EventBrite Page)
    • Each sign-up slot admits one carload of people.
    • Sign-up slots for morning OR afternoon.  Check the date and time carefully!  (show up at any time during your morning or afternoon window.)
  • No pets!  Sorry!
  • Masks are required when in the bathrooms and when social distancing is difficult to maintain.
  • Protect the land by following the “leave no trace” philosophy. Dispose of waste properly, leave what you find, be considerate of other visitors, stay on trails, and respect wildlife
  • Release Form must be signed by all participants.  Find Release Forms HERE.  (Save time and fill out before you arrive.  We’ll have some on hand as well )
  • Check in with an AOEA volunteer before you get started.
  • Gates close at 4 pm sharp, don’t get locked in!

Every little bit helps!  To support the Outdoor Lab’s educational programs and help reach more Arlington students, a suggested donation of $20 per car is welcomed but not mandatory.  We can always use help collecting kindling, just leave neatly stacked by wood piles. (Thanks!)

So put on your hiking shoes, dress for the weather, and come and enjoy the beauty of The Outdoor Lab.

Directions can be found on our website.  Click Here for DIRECTIONS

ODL celebrates Black History Month

The Outdoor Lab Board and Staff celebrate Black History Month throughout February and the entire year.

Last year we launched our Cultural History Project to research, document, and share the stories of ALL the families who called the Pond and Biscuit mountain gap home.  We continue to research African American families who worked and lived on Outdoor Lab and adjacent properties through Deeds and Census records.

On a visit to the Afro-American History Association of Fauquier County, Outdoor Lab staff learned that part of the Underground Railroad went through our property.  The oral history was that enslaved people escaping through Fauquier were told “Follow the Pine/Pond Mountains” to freedom.  The map shows the path along the Bull Run Mountains (of which our Pond and Biscuit are a part) to safety with Quaker supporters in Waterford.

We continue to partner with other researchers, families and organizations as we progress with the Cultural History Project.  Please check back to see our progress.  If you have an interest in helping please contact president@outdoorlab.org.

ODL’s Amazon Wish List

For supporters who like to give something tangible, the Outdoor Lab Staff has created an AmazonSmile Charity List to use with students at the Outdoor Lab.

Shop online or on your app and help the students experience the Outdoor Lab with hands-on STEM learning.

 

While you’re there, you can select the Arlington Outdoor Education Association (the non-profit behind the Outdoor Lab) as your AmazonSmile charity.

Dec 4th 5-9p Chipotle Ballston Fundraiser

Save the Date for our Chipotle Fundraiser- Saturday Dec 4th from 5-9pm at the Ballston Common Chipotle!

The Outdoor Lab will receive part of the sales at the Ballston Common Chipotle (4300 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA 22203)

Please share with your friends and family to help support the Outdoor Lab!  You can make it safer by ordering online for pickup.  Details and flyers below…

Guarantee your purchase supports the Outdoor Lab:

  • Show the cashier a digital flyer prior to paying
  • Show the cashier a paper flyer prior to paying
  • Flying flyer-free? Just mention the fundraiser to the cashier prior to paying
  • Order online and pickup Chipotle by using the Promo Code V9EZR9M on the Chipotle app or website.
  • Please note that fundraiser online ordering is only valid through pickup on Saturday Dec 4th from 5p-9p at the Ballston Chipotle location.

A few more notes:

  • Don’t order delivery or through a separate app – online orders will only count for pickup through the official Chipotle App or on our website.
  • Don’t place orders for your fundraiser on days other than your fundraiser date and time. Orders placed outside of your fundraiser date, time, or assigned restaurant WILL NOT be counted.
  • Don’t hand out flyers to our regular customers in or around the restaurant – that’s cheating! (Which may also lead to your fundraiser being cancelled)
  • Don’t alter your flyer in any way
  • Don’t be shy! Make sure you tell our cashier that you’re attending the fundraiser before you pay
  • Don’t purchase a gift card – gift card purchases during fundraisers do NOT count towards total donated sales, but purchases made with an existing gift card will count.

Chipotle Fundraiser Dec 2021 english 374040-flyer

Chipotle fundraiser Dec 2021 374040-spanish-flyer