Posts Tagged ‘National Park Week’

Need some fresh air to clear your mind?  How about a stroll through a garden to mellow out the stress of a busy day?  Or maybe winter has packed on a few extra pounds and it’s time to hit the bike trails again.

America’s 394 national parks offer many close-to-home opportunities for outdoor recreation.  A growing number of doctors even write “Park Prescriptions” to get patients outside and active.   The growing connection between public lands and public health is the focus of National Park Week, April 16-24.  Entrance to all national parks is free throughout the week.

“National parks have always been great places to go on vacation, have fun, and learn something, but for millions of Americans national parks are also
a daily part of a healthy lifestyle” National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis said.   “If you’ve never thought of your national parks that way, we’d like to invite you to come out to see how parks can help you meet your fitness goals.  Getting outside and moving is the first step.”

However, you don’t have to work up a sweat to enjoy a national park.  Take in a ranger talk or join a free guided tour.  Or add some superlatives to
your life list:  the world’s tallest trees (sequoias), longest cave (Mammoth Cave), largest carnivore (Alaskan Brown Bear), or the United States’ highest peak (Mount McKinley), lowest point (Death Valley), or deepest lake (Crater Lake).  Plan you visit at www.nps.gov.

In addition to waiving entrance fees throughout the week, national parks and park partners are offering programs as part of National Park Week
festivities.  On Saturday, April 16, many parks will be looking for volunteers to help with projects and on Saturday April 23, kids will be the special guests for the 5th annual Junior Ranger Day.  More details at www.nps.gov/npweek.

Additional fee-free days scheduled for 2011 are June 21 (the first day of summer), September 21 (National Public Lands Day), and November 11-13
(Veterans Day Weekend).

If that first step toward fitness isn’t in a national park, it just might be in a place that the National Park Service helped to create.  Through the
Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance (RTCA) program, Land and Water Conservation Fund grants, and other programs, the National Park Service
works with states and communities to create and expand local recreation opportunities outside of national parks.  Learn more at www.nps.gov/communities.

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today announced a schedule of free admission days to many of the public lands managed by Interior.

All national parks, national wildlife refuges, Bureau of Land Management areas will offer free admission on June 5-6, August 14-15, September 25 (Public Lands Day), and November 11 (Veterans Day). These dates are in addition to the previously announced free admission at all 392 national parks April 17-25 as part of the celebration of National Park Week.

America’s public lands offer opportunities to engage in healthy, outdoor activities, whether for a few hours or a few days. More details about fee free days and activities are available for:
National parks at
http://www.nps.gov/findapark/feefreeparks.htm
National wildlife refuges at http://www.fws.gov/refuges/
Bureau of Land Management areas at
http://www.blm.gov/wo/st/en/prog/Recreation/BLM_Fee_Free_Days.html

“What better way to celebrate this Earth Day than to make it easier for all Americans to experience the breathtaking landscapes, amazing creatures, and the stories that make up our shared heritage,” added Salazar. “By getting outdoors, we remind ourselves of our blessings and of the responsibility we all have to pass these lands on to our children and our grandchildren.”

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced today that all 392 national parks will have free admission during National Park Week, April 17 to 25. Parks will also offer additional family friendly activities and special offers on tours, lodging, food, and souvenirs. A listing of parks and promotions is available at www.nps.gov/npweek.

“We are rolling out the red carpet and inviting everyone to visit a national park and help celebrate National Park Week,” said Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar. “Parks are fun and affordable destinations and great places to engage in healthy, outdoor activities, whether for a few hours or a few days.”

National Park Week, a program of the National Park Service, is an opportunity to engage families and communities in America’s Great Outdoors, reconnecting them with nature and creating close to home opportunities for people to get outside, be active, and have fun.

“National parks preserve our heritage, promote recreational experiences, and provide places of quiet refuge,” said National Park Service Director Jon Jarvis. “Most people live within a short drive of a national park so I encourage everyone to spend some time enjoying America’s Great Outdoors during National Park Week.”

There will be hundreds of family friendly events on Saturday, April 24, for National Junior Ranger Day. Each child participating in Junior Ranger activities will receive a certificate, patch, or pin.

Other National Park Week highlights include the 40th anniversary of Earth Day and the 75th anniversary of the nation’s most visited national park –
the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Normally, 146 of 392 national parks charge entrance fees ranging from $3 to $25. The other 246 do not charge for admission. The fee free waiver for National Park Week does not include other fees collected in advance or by contractors—such as fees charged for camping, reservations and use of concessions.

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