Visit the Park » Adventures & Skills Instruction

Take a Class with JRPS Education Staff!

Our programs seek to improve the quality of access to the Park’s unique ecology and recreational opportunities. We draw on the Park as the cornerstone of outdoor adventure education in the City of Richmond and as a critical educational tool to instill environmental literacy and stewardship in this community. By improving residents’ access to, and knowledge of, James River Park, we seek to create a physically, emotionally, and environmentally healthier city for everyone who lives, works and plays here.


Programs are held year round and registration is required for most events. Program fees or suggested donations help support programs for under-served youth and elementary school students in Richmond.


For questions concerning the JRPS Adventure Recreation Program or to register, contact Penelope Davenport at [email protected].

Adventure & Skills Programs

Salamander Salutations

Yoga instructors from the Richmond community lead these sessions, outdoors whenever the weather allows, suitable for anyone interested in expanding their practice. Please check our Salamander Salutations Facebook Group to determine the week’s location.

Beginner Mountain Biking

Learn the basics of mountain biking on trails throughout the James River Park System. This course is designed to introduce those new to mountain biking or interested in getting into mountain biking, but riders of all skill levels are welcome. Please bring a water bottle and bike riding appropriate attire.

Intro to Rock Climbing

Come learn the basics of rock climbing at James River Parks Manchester Wall. Here you will learn the fundamentals of climbing movement, belaying, knot tying as well as gear needed to enjoy top rope climbing outdoors. Bring water, snacks and climbing appropriate clothing.

Kayak Pool Sessions

Learn the fundamentals of whitewater kayaking indoors before you get out on the river. We’ll work on basic strokes and self- rescue techniques, including the roll, to prepare you for kayaking in the James River.

Intro to Whitewater Kayaking

Sign up to learn the fundamentals of whitewater paddling in a fun environment with a low instructor to student ratio, so you’ll get plenty of individual attention. We’ll provide any equipment that you don’t have yourself. Be sure to wear clothes and sturdy shoes that can all get wet. Minimum age of 12; maximum weight limit of 200 lbs; must be a confident swimmer. Class size is limited to 8 participants, so sign up early!

Beginner’s Whitewater Weekend

This two-day course will teach you the fundamental techniques of whitewater kayaking: basic strokes, rescues, and river reading. The course will be tailored to participants’ desires and skill levels. All equipment will be provided. Additional dates are available; please contact Penelope Davenport for more information.

Meteor Shower Bike Tour

After a scenic and challenging ride along the Virginia Capitol Trail, we’ll camp under the stars at Chickahominy State Park and watch the Perseid Meteor Shower. At its peak, we can expect to see between 60 and 100 meteors per hour during the Perseids. We’ll return to the city the following morning. This annual ride is not to be missed!


Escape the heat but still bask in the sun with these leisurely floats down the James River. We’ll meet at the Park Headquarters, hike upstream along the banks of the river, and then float back down through Mitchell’s Gut rapids. Please bring water to drink and dress to be in the water and in the sun.

Adventure Hikes

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Leave No Trace Trainer Course

Leave No Trace Ethics are a great way to educate the public on ways to keep James River Parks and other state and national parks healthy. Become a LNT Trainer so you can better educate others on the best environmental practices while navigating the great outdoors. Participates will be eligible to receive Leave No Trace Trainer Certification upon course completion.

All Upcoming Events

Click on the event header to see details and for registration information.

Educator Resources

Would you like to bring a school group, girl scout troop, or your family to learn about the park? JRPS Education staff teaches place-based environmental science throughout the year. We tailor curricula to meet your group’s specific needs, including aligning with SOL’s where appropriate, and we’d love to design a course for you.

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