Meadowcroft Field Trips

Hands-on educational programs at Meadowcroft allow students to explore the history of life on the land in the upper Ohio Valley. Meadowcroft offers field trips April-November and requires that two adults (admitted free) accompany each group of 20 students. Additional adults are welcome, but will be charged the regular program fee. Chaperones must accompany students at all times.

book a field trip

For more information about planning your next visit, please contact Meadowcroft at 724-587-3412 or

Field Trip Experiences

First Peoples

Prehistoric Pennsylvania

Explore the discovery and excavation of Meadowcroft Rockshelter, a National Historic Landmark, in this newly designed field trip experience.


Interactive stations provide students with hands-on and inquiry-based opportunities for uncovering the secrets of the “First Peoples” and the multidisciplinary approach of the experts who study the archaeological site. Investigate how the geography and ecology of the Cross Creek watershed impacted the ability of prehistoric people to camp here, explore the geologic forces that created the Rockshelter and its stratigraphy, examine the archaeological site, and analyze educational artifacts to understand how archaeologists interpret a cultural assemblage.


Grades: All
Program Length: 2 hours
Availability: April to November
Cost: $7 per student

Woodland Encounters

Prehistoric Pennsylvania


Travel 400 years into the past to explore a re-created Eastern Woodland Indian Village at Meadowcroft.


The palisaded settlement includes wigwams, a representative native garden plot, hunting camp, and other educational archaeological features common to Monongahela Indian sites. This program emphasizes the forest-centered lifestyle of pre-contact American Indians in the Upper Ohio Valley. Students have an opportunity to try using an atlatl, a prehistoric spear thrower, and learn about the complex relationship between nature and man.


Grades: All
Program Length: 80 minutes
Availability: April to November
Cost: $7 per student

Village Life

Industrialization and Immigration


Visit Meadowcroft’s 19th-century village to learn about how early industrialization affected rural life in the Upper Ohio Valley.


Students will visit historic log houses and learn what life was like before modern conveniences. The topics include textile manufacture, pre-electric lighting, and historical games. In addition to visiting the log homes, students will experience a simulated lesson in a one-room schoolhouse and get to witness a blacksmith at work in his forge.


Grades: K – 8
Program Length: 3 hours with 1/2 for lunch
Availability: April to November
Cost: $7 per student

Meadowcroft Rockshelter Tour

Add on a guided tour of the Meadowcroft Rockshelter to any other Meadowcroft programs. Discover why prehistoric people picked this site and how they lived here over the last 19,000 years as you explore the archaeological excavation that uncovered this National Historic Landmark.


Grades: All
Program Length: 1 hour
Availability: April to November
Cost: $7 per student


Please note that due to high visitation during the spring field trip season, availability may be limited.

Souvenir Bags

Meadowcroft Rockshelter and Historic Village

Meadowcroft Rockshelter and Historic Village offers a $3 souvenir bag to visiting school groups. This bag contains an arrowhead, Meadowcroft-branded suede bag, postcard (images vary), and Meadowcroft-branded pencil. If you would like to get gift bags for your students, please ask to add them to your tour confirmation when booking your tour. Bags must be ordered at least 30 days prior to your tour.

Helpful Field Trip Tips

Meadowcroft is primarily an outdoor museum. It is important that all field trip participants dress appropriately for the weather. Rainy days are common in the spring so ensure that students bring raincoats, ponchos, or umbrellas when rain is a possibility. Be aware that strongly scented perfumes and hair sprays sometimes attract insects. Insect repellent is permitted. We suggest that all visitors stay on the trails.

It is particularly important that students not touch any artifacts unless invited to do so by museum staff. This protects the artifacts and helps to ensure the safety of the students.

Accessibility varies depending on the educational program. The viewing platform at the Meadowcroft Rockshelter is located at the top of 65 steps. Rest areas are provided on the stairwell. The Woodland Encounters program takes place within a forest clearing located at the end of a 150 foot crushed stone trail. Both the trail and the Indian Village are accessible. The 19th century village is partially accessible with some of the buildings having a few steps. We ask that any student with special needs be accompanied by an adult who can help them to navigate the site if necessary. Visually impaired students are welcome and will have many hands-on opportunities as they listen to talks given by museum staff. Teachers are encouraged to call Meadowcroft at 724-587-3412 to discuss any accessibility-related concerns.

Upon arriving at Meadowcroft, the bus should pull up in front of the Visitors Center. While students remain on the bus, the lead teacher should enter the building to purchase tickets and receive instructions. The only restrooms at Meadowcroft are located at the Visitors Center. Students will be given the opportunity to use the restrooms prior to beginning their educational program.

Students will need to bring bagged lunches with them, as only light snacks and soft drinks are available at the museum gift shop. A picnic pavilion, outdoor picnic tables, and limited indoor seating are available on a first-come basis. During pleasant weather, school groups frequently picnic on the grass behind the Visitors Center.

School groups are welcome to visit the museum gift shop provided they are accompanied by a teacher or chaperone. In addition to regular shopping, the gift shop also offers pre-packaged souvenir gift bags. Please call Meadowcroft at 724-587-3412 to discuss the cost and contents of gift bags. The gift shop is located within the Visitors Center.