This just in from the National Park Foundation: Top 10 ways to celebrate National Park Week 2011. Our national parks are our treasures and should not be missed. The handful I have visited over the years (some repeatedly) cannot be expressed in mere words or pictures; they truly have to be experienced. If not during National Park Week, at some point make it a priority to visit a national park or two (or more, discover for yourself that feeling of awe and amazement as you explore new places that are available to each and every one of us.
Here is the press release:
The National Park Foundation, the official charity of America’s national parks, is teaming up with the National Park Service to celebrate National Park Week 2011 April 16 – 24. People everywhere are invited to experience America’s nearly 400 national parks which will be fee FREE all week. Celebrating the theme “Healthy Parks, Healthy People,” national parks across the country are encouraging people to come visit, get outdoors, and embrace a healthy lifestyle, while also embracing the importance of keeping our parks protected and preserved.
Here are 10 great ways to celebrate:
• Visit a national park! There are nearly 400 national parks in America, and during National Park Week, they are all fee FREE. Take the time to go visit, and discover the magic of these treasured places. Start by visiting .
• Healthy Parks make Healthy People. From hiking to biking to swimming, there are great outdoor activities in your national parks for visitors of all ages. Start by getting the FREE National Park Foundation Owner’s Guide: “35 National Park Adventures for Kids of All Ages.”
• Show your support! As we celebrate National Park Week, take the time to consider what it would be like without these iconic places. Give today to the National Park Foundation and your gift will be MATCHED up to $50,000! With your help we can provide the necessary support to America’s nearly 400 national parks.
• Become a Junior Ranger! Introduce a young person to our national parks on Junior Ranger Day, April 23. Through the Junior Ranger program kids learn about history, the environment and much more. At the end, each participant will be sworn in as a National Park Service Junior Ranger. Kids can also get active with the new “Let’s Move Outside Junior Ranger” program celebrating First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” initiative striving to end childhood obesity within a generation.
• “Check-In” on Facebook. Using Facebook “Places” on your mobile device, “check-in” at a national park and The North Face will donate $1 to the National Park Foundation! Just search for the national park near you using the latest version of the Facebook for iPhone app or by visiting https://touch.facebook.com/ from your HTML5-enabled mobile device.
• Meet a National Park Service Ranger! Do you know the people that help safeguard our national parks every day? Take the time to learn more about the National Park Service and the men and women that protect these special places. Get out and visit them or go to www.nps.gov to learn more.
• Share your adventure! Upload your photos, videos, poems or stories exclusively at facebook.com/nationalpark, and share your National Park Week experience with the world!
• Celebrate Earth Day in the parks! Take the time on April 22 to get outside to a national park and celebrate all the wonders and magical places that our planet has given us. In return, do the small things to show your appreciation like using environmentally-friendly transportation, recycling and supporting the National Park Foundation.
• Enter the ” I Heart Parks” contest! Go to www.facebook.com/nationalpark for the opportunity to win daily prizes from the National Park Foundation including park passes, outdoor gear, and a trip to Shenandoah National Park!
For more information on National Park Week, and a full listing of events, including details on park-specific Earth Day events (April 22), visit www.nationalparkweek.org.
To find out more about the work of the National Park Foundation, and how to help, visit www.nationalparks.org.
ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION
The National Park Foundation is the official charity of America’s national parks. Chartered by Congress, we work hand in hand with the National Park Service to strengthen and connect all Americans to our parks, so they are protected for present and future generations. It is a legacy that began more than a century ago, when private citizens took action to first establish, then protect and endow our national parks. Today, the National Park Foundation carries on that tradition as the only national charitable partner for America’s national parks.