This summer the National Parks Store in Oro Valley is hosting a series of “Just for Kids” events full of songs, stories and crafts.

The activities, which all run from 11 a.m. to noon, are designed to encourage children to become advocates for national parks, and involve them in national heritage. All events will take place at the National Parks Store, 12880 N. Vistoso Village Drive.

Reservations are required and may be made by calling 622-6014. Be sure to arrive a bit early, though, as reservations that remain unclaimed will be canceled five minutes before the event.

Here’s the schedule:

  • Thursdays through July 31:
  • Summer Stories

Children can sing, hear stories and make crafts during children’s hour at the National Park Store. This event is recommended for children ages 3-8, who must be accompanied by an adult.

  • July 9:
  • “The Pancake Tree” Storytime and Book Signing

Children will learn if pancakes really do grow on trees with coauthor Laurie Melrood and mesquite harvester Juanita Leoni. They will read from their book “The Pancake Tree” and give children the chance to learn about the wonders of the mesquite tree. Melrood and Leoni will also host a book signing. This event is recommended for children ages 3 and up.

  • July 23:
  • “Riding the Wind” Storytime and Children’s Writing Workshop

Retired teacher Gail Bornfield will read her book “Riding With the Wind,” about a pelican that winds up in the desert after a storm. Children will learn how to create their own characters, setting and plots. This event is recommended for children grades 4-6 and is limited to 15 participants.

  • Aug. 16:
  • When We Dance Native American Hoop Dancing Lessons and Storytime

Children will hear a story about tradition and learn hoop-dancing steps with the Duncan family. Violet Duncan, a “fancy shawl” dancer, will read from “When We Dance,” a story about transferring tradition from mother to daughter. Hoop dancer Tony Duncan, a five-time world champion, will demonstrate traditional hoop-dancing steps.