Summer Solstice Celebrations at Lewis & Clark Caverns State Park
By Moosetrack Megan

Posted: June 19, 2019

(Whitehall, MT) – Celebrate the summer solstice with interpretive programs at Lewis & Clark Caverns State Park on June 21, 22, and 24.

Dance your way into summer with “Swinging Through History” on Friday, June 21 at 8:00pm. This summer solstice dance will take participants on a journey through American history with historian and dance caller Mark Matthews, courtesy of Humanities Montana. The evening will begin with an old-time barn dance featuring European-based community dances including English Country, New England contra and western square—plus round dances such as the heel-and-toe polka.

Between songs, Mark will explain how particular styles of dancing evolved and how old-time balls, hops and frolics helped build community throughout the centuries. All dances will be taught and are simple and engaging for all ages! This program will be held at the Campground Pavilion.

Mark Matthews is author of “Swinging through American History,” a four-volume set chronicling the evolution of American social dancing from 1619 to 2000. In recent years, he has traveled throughout Montana introducing thousands of school children to various forms of dancing. Mark is also a sculptor. Visit his gallery on the main road heading into the town of Hysham off Interstate-94.

On Saturday, June 22 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm, Park Ranger Julia Smit will lead hikers on “A solstice Look at the Desert Ecosystem”. This moderate hike explores one of the park’s varied habitats: desert-like sagebrush steppe. Over the course of this 2.5-mile hike, examine this unique area, filled with cactus and other desert dwellers, and learn how the natural world reacts to changing light and day length. This hike will meet at the campground registration kiosk.

On Monday, June 24 at 8:00pm join us for the ranger talk “How to Not Get Struck by Lightning”. There’s a lot of conflicting information out there about what to do if you’re caught outside in a lightning storm. This ranger talk will bust some common lightning myths, give insight into how storms work, and teach you what to do if you’re caught out in a lightning storm. The presentation will be at the campground amphitheater.

For more information about these or other events at Lewis & Clark Caverns State Park, call (406) 287-3541.

Lewis & Clark Caverns State Park, 25 Lewis & Clark Caverns Rd, Whitehall, MT

From the exit 274 on I-90 we are 13 miles south on Highway 287 and 5 miles west on MT 2.
From the Cardwell exit 256 on I-90 we are 7 miles east along MT 2.

Lewis & Clark Caverns State Park features one of the largest known limestone caverns in the Northwest filled with spectacular stalactites, stalagmites, columns, and helictites. The park also features camping, trails to hike or bike, a state-of-the-art visitor center, interpretive displays, a gift shop, food and beverage concessions, amphitheater, and interpretive events presented during the summer months.

Visit Montana State Parks ( and enjoy camping, hiking, fishing, swimming, boating and more and discover some of the greatest natural and cultural treasures on earth.

A division of Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks

Julia Smit
Park Ranger,
Lewis & Clark Caverns State Park
(406) 287-3541