America250 launches new nationwide student contest: America’s Field Trip

Published 4:48 pm Tuesday, March 5, 2024

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MONTEVALLO – On March 4, America250, the official nonpartisan entity charged by Congress with planning the 250th anniversary of the nation’s founding, launched America’s Field Trip—a nationwide scholastic contest with awardees receiving once-in-a-lifetime, behind-the-scenes access to iconic American historical and cultural sites. America’s Field Trip invites elementary, middle and high school students to submit artwork and essays reflecting on what America means to them.

75 first place awardees and a designated chaperone will be provided free travel, lodging, and access to exclusive, once-in-a-lifetime field trip experiences at select historical and cultural sites across the country, and second-place awardees will receive scholarship grants. Inaugural field trip experiences and partners include:

  • Private tour of the crown of the Statue of Liberty
  • Behind-the-scenes tour and hike at Yellowstone National Park
  • Weekend with National Park Rangers at Rocky Mountain National Park
  • Behind-the scenes tours at the National Archives, National Museum of American History, the Library of Congress, the National Museum of African American History and Culture, or the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, DC
  • Special tour of the USS Constitution Museum in Boston & sunset boat cruise
  • Candlelight tour at Fort Point at the base of the Golden Gate Bridge
  • Costumed role-playing experience at American Village in Alabama

“America’s Field Trip is one of the most ambitious education engagement campaigns ever attempted because it’s more than a contest—it’s an extraordinary opportunity to bring students across the country together in celebrating and commemorating our nation’s 250th anniversary by exploring our past and allowing them to express their dreams for the future,” America250 Chair, Rosie Rios said.

“Alabama is excited to participate in America’s Field Trip with America250, offering students a unique educational journey to explore America’s founding,” said Alan Miller, president and CEO of American Village. “Through this initiative, America’s founding history will be on display, providing young learners with invaluable insights into moments that brought forth a new nation.”

The inaugural contest, designed in partnership with Discovery Education, will serve as the pilot launch of America’s Field Trip, which will expand in 2025 and 2026 to include additional prompts on topics relating to the country’s past, present and future and more extraordinary field trip experiences.

In order to participate, students must submit individually and must work with either teachers or parents to submit entries on their behalf. Submissions across all age groups would respond to the question, “What does America mean to you?” Students and teachers can find more information, including resources, contest rules, release forms, and toolkit materials to integrate the competition into classroom activities at

The contest has different submission requirements and is available to any student in elementary school (third to fifth grade), middle school (sixth to eighth grade), and high school (ninth to twelfth grade) who aligns with age-appropriate skills. The contest goes live and begins accepting submissions March 4 and will remain open until May 17, 2024. Award recipients will be announced in June 2024, and field trips will start in mid-July.

The American Village is a unique attraction in the heart of Alabama, on 188 acres in Montevallo, 30 minutes south of Birmingham. Housed here is a nationally pioneering education institution focused on building good citizens through immersive and engaging experiences, where visitors discover the power and drama of America’s journey for independence, liberty and self-government.

Tom Walker, American Village Founder and President Emeritus, serves as vice-chair of the U.S. Semiquincentennial Commission, and Val Crofts, American Village chief education and programs officer, serves as a member. For more information, visit

America250 is a nonpartisan initiative working to engage every American in celebrating and commemorating the 250th anniversary of our country. It is spearheaded by the congressionally appointed U.S. Semiquincentennial Commission and its nonprofit supporting organization,

This multi-year effort kicked off with America’s Invitation on July 4, 2023: a national public engagement campaign inviting all Americans to share their stories and their hopes and dreams for the future of this country.

Until July 4, 2026, America250 is working to provide opportunities for all Americans to pause and reflect on the nation’s past, honor the contributions of all Americans and look to the future we want to create for the next generation and beyond.

To learn more, visit, or follow the organization on social media.