National Speleological Society convention, Cookeville, TN, June 17-21

It was such an honor for CaveSim founder Dave Jackson to have his high school science teacher visit to see what CaveSim is all about.  Dr. John Moyle is an amazing educator, conservationist, and wonderful human being.

It was also a great honor for us to receive the NSS Group Award for Conservation, announced and presented by Val Hildreth-Werker.

Ruby Falls, Chattanooga, TN, June 6-9

We were so glad to be able to celebrate National Cave & Karst Day at this wonderful show cave.  We had very challenging weather (gobs of rain), but we kept CaveSim open the whole time.

Cresson Elementary School, Cripple Creek, CO

This was our sixth consecutive year bringing CaveSim to this wonderful school.  The weather was so severe that the fire department packed up their demonstration and went home, but we stayed.  The kids are hearty and didn’t mind the freezing fog.

Above, the students were all smiles after exploring CaveSim.  It was the last day of school, but we snuck in plenty of learning!  Below, students exploring the mobile cave.  Photos by Dave Jackson.


Above, students learn first-hand about pulleys and mechanical advantage on the 12′ CaveSim A-frame.  Below, kids learn some basic circuits concepts while having fun with the cave rescue telephones.  Photos by Dave Jackson.


Beulah School of Natural Sciences

We had a wonderful Family Nature Night at this beautiful rural school, thanks to the support of The Colorado Department of Wildlife and their SOLE program.  We worked with lots of kids and their families at this K-8 school, and the program ran from 5PM-7PM, which fit in perfectly with our program in Cripple Creek in the morning (see next post).

Adults have fun with CaveSim too!


Excited to try the CaveSim tower.

Practice cave rescue with our Skedco stretcher.

Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park, Glenwood Springs, CO

We were so honored to be invited to bring CaveSim to the 20th anniversary of Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park.  CaveSim was so popular that we kept it open for an extra 90 minutes, and didn’t close until 8:30PM!

Ben Franklin Academy, Highlands Ranch, CO, May 14-17

This was our second year doing a four-day program at this wonderful charter school, and we worked with kindergarten through fifth grade.  Most of the students had seen CaveSim last year, but they loved getting to explore the cave again, and they all learned something new from all of the different activities that we brought.

The Colorado Springs School

We’ve been working with this great private school for eight years, and it was really fun to teach a great group of middle school students this year.  We did our advanced program, in which we taught vertical cave rescue on the 12′ tower, as well has horizontal cave rescue using a stretcher and an obstacle course.

Chipeta Elementary School 8 week series of CaveSim programs, Colorado Springs, CO (each Friday from March 15 through May 10)

This afterschool enrichment program has been a big hit with the 19 students who are participating.  The kids are in 2nd – 5th grade, and have been enjoying our hands-on STEM labs, as well as our regular program.  A big thank-you to CaveSim staff member Jackson Fulcher and CaveSim volunteers Christine, Todd, Nicole, and Christa for helping make this program a big success.

John Ross Elementary School, Edmond, OK

Despite terrible weather, we had a fantastic program.  We were able to pull the trailer under the awning at the front of the school, and we put the tower in the school’s 12′ tall atrium.  We worked with about 120 4th grade students (in five classes), and we did two of our labs (karst and formations) in addition to our standard program.


Photos by Amanda Lonberg, 4th grade teacher


Centennial Elementary School, Edmond, OK

Students at Centennial Elementary School in Edmond, OK loved having CaveSim at their school today.  In addition to the mobile cave, we had our vertical caving tower set up for the students to learn about simple machines (including pulleys), mechanical advantage, friction, and forces. We also set up cave rescue activities (which teach teamwork and communication skills), bat games (which teach life science concepts), and other stations.

Above, students learn about pulleys, mechanical advantage, friction, and other physics concepts on the 12′ CaveSim tower with help from CaveSim instructor Jesse Yazzetti.

Below, CaveSim instructor Scott Hall teaches students to work together as a team to “rescue” a classmate using a real cave rescue stretcher.  Photos by Leah DeGiacomo, 4th Grade Teacher.


Below, students learn about how cave formations grow from CaveSim inventor Dave Jackson, who is holding both artificial cave formations (stalactites) and a real cave formation (a soda straw that formed on the edge of a swimming pool because of concrete dissolution and redeposition).  Also below, students play a blindfold game about echolocation with the help of some awesome parent volunteers.


This was our first program in this district, and it went really well!  We worked with 255 students in 3rd and 4th grade, and we had wonderful help from CaveSim staffer Jesse Yazzetti and our friend and volunteer Scott Hall.  We ran four stations, including the trailer, tower, cave rescue/squeezebox, and bats.

Above, students are all smiles after exploring CaveSim.  Photo by Dave Jackson.


Science Museum Oklahoma, Oklahoma City, April 27-28

We were excited to be able to bring CaveSim back to this great museum for the third time, and this time the museum had us do two days of public programs instead of one.  Thank you to CaveSim staffer Jesse Yazzetti for doing such a great job with this program.

Bat Appreciation Day, Cave of the Winds, Manitou Springs, CO

We celebrated Bat Appreciation Day a few days early with this great event at Cave of the Winds.  Members of several grottos (caving clubs) came to staff booths and activities about bat conservation.  We brought CaveSim, which was popular with visitors of all ages.


Above, Dave works with participants on the CaveSim vertical caving tower as they learn about pulleys, simple machines, mechanical advantage, and other physics concepts (left), and Dave helps participants get geared up with knee pads and helmets to explore CaveSim (right). Photos by Mike and Donna Frazier.

Above, Dave by the CaveSim trailer just before visitors arrived.  The fun hand-painted sign was by Christine, who did a great job of organizing the event.  Photo by Mike Frazier.